A role for endothelin in malignant phase hypertension has been suggested on the basis of reported increases of circulating plasma immunoreactive endothelins in animal models. Recently, a hypertensive rat model that exhibits a genetically determined tendency for developing spontaneous onset malignant hypertension has been described. Expression of the three genes endothelin-1, endothelin-2, and endothelin-3 was quantified in the kidney by specific RNase protection assays in rats with established malignant hypertension, in rats with benign hypertension with and without a genetic susceptibility to malignant hypertension, and in normotensive Sprague-Dawley rats. Endothelin-1 mRNA levels were significantly elevated in the group with malignant hypertension compared with the other three groups. For determination of whether endothelin-1-mediated effects were crucial in the transition from benign to malignant phase hypertension, an oral nonspecific combined endothelin-A and endothelin-B receptor antagonist (bosentan) was given to hypertensive rats susceptible to malignant hypertension. No hypotensive effects were observed, and no significant difference in the incidence of malignant hypertension was observed between treated and control groups. In conclusion, although increased endothelin-1 mRNA expression was found in kidney tissue from rats developing malignant hypertension, blockade of endothelin-1-mediated effects did not prevent the transition from benign phase hypertension. Hence, increased renal endothelin-1 expression in this model of malignant hypertension does not appear to have a causative role and may simply reflect cellular damage and ischemia.
|Number of pages||7|
|Publication status||Published - Dec 1995|