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Am J Physiol. 1994 Dec;267(6 Pt 2):R1454-60.

Renal effects of nitric oxide synthesis inhibition in cirrhotic rats.

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Departamento de Fisiología, Facultad de Medicina, Murcia, Spain.


In the present study, we have characterized the renal response to inhibition of endogenous nitric oxide (NO) synthesis [intravenous NG-nitro-L-arginine methyl ester (L-NAME) for 3 h] in anesthetized cirrhotic rats, with (ASC) and without (CIR) ascites, at doses that do not change blood pressure (BP). Administration of L-NAME induced opposite effects on water (UV) and sodium (UNaV) excretion in cirrhotic and control animals. Infusion of 1 of L-NAME in CIR (n = 5) decreased renal plasma flow (RPF) at the end of the 3-h period, whereas UV, UNaV, and glomerular filtration rate (GFR) were unaltered. In contrast, infusion of L-NAME at 10 in six more CIR increased UV and UNaV significantly by the 1st h, without changes in BP or GFR, and these parameters remained elevated throughout the experiment. Infusion of 1 in ASC (n = 6) did not change BP or GFR but significantly enhanced UV and UNaV after the 1st h. These effects were prevented by pretreatment with L-arginine (0.1 in another group of ASC infused with 1 of L-NAME. These results indicate that, in ASC and CIR cirrhotic rats, inhibition of NO synthesis at nonpressor does improves renal excretion of sodium and water via a decrease in tubular reabsorption. NO is an important mediator of the renal excretory and hemodynamic alterations of experimental liver cirrhosis.

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