Plasma renin activity predicts blood pressure responses to Β-blocker and thiazide diuretic as monotherapy and add-on therapy for hypertension

Stephen T. Turner, Gary L. Schwartz, Arlene B. Chapman, Amber L. Beitelshees, John G. Gums, Rhonda M. Cooper-Dehoff, Eric Boerwinkle, Julie A. Johnson, Kent R. Bailey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

70 Scopus citations


Background Age and race categories or renin profiling have been recommended to predict blood pressure responses to monotherapy with a Β-blocker or thiazide diuretic. Whether these or other characteristics predict blood pressure responses when the drugs are administered as add-on therapy is uncertain. Methods We evaluated predictors of blood pressure response in 363 men and women ≤65 years of age with primary hypertension (152 blacks, 211 whites), 86 of whom (24%) were untreated and 277 of whom (76%) were withdrawn from previous antihypertensive drugs before randomization to either atenolol followed by addition of hydrochlorothiazide (N = 180) or hydrochlorothiazide followed by addition of atenolol (N = 183). Responses were determined by home blood pressure averages before and after each drug administration. Race, age, plasma renin activity, and other characteristics including pretreatment blood pressure levels were incorporated into linear regression models to quantify their contributions to prediction of blood pressure responses. Results Plasma renin activity and pretreatment blood pressure level consistently contributed to prediction of systolic and diastolic responses to each drug administered as mono-and as add-on therapy. Higher plasma renin activity was consistently associated with greater blood pressure responses to atenolol and lesser responses to hydrochlorothiazide. The predictive effects of plasma renin activity were statistically independent of race, age, and other characteristics. Conclusions Plasma renin activity and pretreatment blood pressure level predict blood pressure responses to atenolol and hydrochlorothiazide administered as mono-and as add-on therapy in men and women ≤65 years of age.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1014-1022
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican journal of hypertension
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2010



  • antihypertensive drug therapy
  • blood pressure
  • hypertension
  • plasma renin activity
  • thiazide diuretic
  • β-blocker

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine

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