Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

LSUSHC researchers find potential new target for hypertension treatment

02.02.2009
Huijing Xia, PhD, a postdoctoral research associate in the lab of Eric Lazartigues, PhD, Assistant Professor of Pharmacology at LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans, is the lead author on a paper reporting that a recently identified enzyme in the brain plays a critically important role in the central regulation of blood pressure.

The LSUHSC research team showed that Angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) helps preserve the function of a key spontaneous reflex involved in blood pressure regulation and confirms its potential as a target for the prevention or treatment of High Blood Pressure.

The research is published in the February 1, 2009 issue of the peer reviewed journal, Hypertension, and the cover of the issue features images of ACE2 expression from the Lazartigues laboratory at LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans.

The LSUHSC researchers had previously identified ACE2 in the mouse brain in areas involved in the central regulation of cardiovascular function. In this study, they wanted to clarify the role it plays.

Beat-to-beat short term regulation of blood pressure is provided by a spontaneous reflex called the baroreceptor reflex. Receptors in the arteries sense blood pressure and relay the information to the central nervous system where a network of brain stem cells adjust vascular resistance and heart rate. Action of a hypertensive hormone – Angiotensin II – is known to interfere with that process.

First, the researchers demonstrated that chronically hypertensive mice showed dramatically decreased baroreceptor reflex sensitivity and ACE2 activity. Following treatment with compounds to block both Angiotensin II receptors, the researchers found that by blocking one of these receptors – AT1Rs – ACE2 activity increased. In order to determine the relationship between AT1Rs blockade and ACE2, as well as the significance of ACE2, the LSUHSC researchers generated a triple-transgenic mouse model with increased ACE2 on a background of chronic hypertension. In this model, they observed that the impaired baroreceptor reflex and other critical functions normalized, as did blood pressure.

"We now have evidence that brain ACE2 plays a critical role in baroreceptor reflex function and , consequently, in the prevention of hypertension," says Dr. Xia.

"Blood pressure" is the force of blood pushing against the walls of the arteries as the heart pumps out blood. If this pressure rises and stays high over time, it can damage the body in many ways. According to the National Institutes of Health, in the United States, about 72 million people have hypertension or High Blood Pressure (HBP). This is about 1 in 3 adults. HBP itself usually has no symptoms. Rarely, headaches may occur. Some people only learn that they have HBP after it causes health problems, such as coronary heart disease, stroke, or kidney failure.

"Beyond our discovery of ACE2, we have now confirmed its potential as a target for the treatment of hypertension and other cardiovascular diseases," concludes Dr. Lazartigues.

LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans educates the majority of Louisiana's health care professionals. The state's academic health leader, LSUHSC comprises a School of Medicine, the state's only School of Dentistry, Louisiana's only public School of Public Health, Schools of Allied Health Professions and Graduate Studies, as well as the only School of Nursing in Louisiana within an academic health center. LSUHSC faculty take care of patients in public and private hospitals and clinics throughout Louisiana. In the vanguard of biosciences research in a number of areas worldwide, LSUHSC faculty have made lifesaving discoveries and continue to work to prevent, treat, or cure disease. LSUHSC outreach programs span the state.

Leslie Capo | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.lsuhsc.edu

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: In best circles: First integrated circuit from self-assembled polymer

For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.

In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...

Im Focus: Demonstration of a single molecule piezoelectric effect

Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale

Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...

Im Focus: Hybrid optics bring color imaging using ultrathin metalenses into focus

For photographers and scientists, lenses are lifesavers. They reflect and refract light, making possible the imaging systems that drive discovery through the microscope and preserve history through cameras.

But today's glass-based lenses are bulky and resist miniaturization. Next-generation technologies, such as ultrathin cameras or tiny microscopes, require...

Im Focus: Stem cell divisions in the adult brain seen for the first time

Scientists from the University of Zurich have succeeded for the first time in tracking individual stem cells and their neuronal progeny over months within the intact adult brain. This study sheds light on how new neurons are produced throughout life.

The generation of new nerve cells was once thought to taper off at the end of embryonic development. However, recent research has shown that the adult brain...

Im Focus: Interference as a new method for cooling quantum devices

Theoretical physicists propose to use negative interference to control heat flow in quantum devices. Study published in Physical Review Letters

Quantum computer parts are sensitive and need to be cooled to very low temperatures. Their tiny size makes them particularly susceptible to a temperature...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

2nd International Conference on High Temperature Shape Memory Alloys (HTSMAs)

15.02.2018 | Event News

Aachen DC Grid Summit 2018

13.02.2018 | Event News

How Global Climate Policy Can Learn from the Energy Transition

12.02.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Researchers invent tiny, light-powered wires to modulate brain's electrical signals

21.02.2018 | Life Sciences

The “Holy Grail” of peptide chemistry: Making peptide active agents available orally

21.02.2018 | Life Sciences

Atomic structure of ultrasound material not what anyone expected

21.02.2018 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>