The objectives of this study were to determine plasma levels of endothelin (ET) in a genetic model of hypertension and in control rats during control conditions and in response to short-term volume expansion with saline. Okamoto spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR) and control Wistar-Kyoto (WKY) rats were used in this study. One group of each strain served as control animals, and another group of each strain underwent volume expansion with saline (5% of body weight infused during a period of 30 minutes). The levels of ET-1 and ET-3 were measured in plasma by using a double-antibody radioimmunoassay. In the control groups of SHR and WKY rats, plasma ET-1 levels were 72.5 ± 14.9 pg/ml (N = 8) and 40.2 ± 7.5 pg/ml (N = 12), respectively (P<0.05). In the volume-expanded SHR group (N = 8), the plasma ET-1 level was 45.5 ± 11.1 pg/ml (∼37% less than that of the control SHR group), whereas it was 40.6 ± 10.2 pg/ml in the volume-expanded group of WKY rats (N = 10) (almost identical to that of the control WKY group). Plasma levels of ET-3 were similar in control and in volume-expanded groups of SHR and WKY rats. These data show that basal levels of plasma ET-1 are significantly higher in the SHR than in the WKY rat. During short-term volume expansion with saline, the exaggerated natriuretic and diuretic responses of the SHR are accompanied by a pronounced decrease in plasma levels of ET-1, but no changes in these levels were observed in the WKY rat in response to the same degree of volume expansion.
ASJC Scopus subject areas