Aldosterone, not estradiol, is the physiological agonist for rapid increases in cAMP in vascular smooth muscle cells. (1/759)

BACKGROUND: Steroid-induced gene regulation in the endocrine tissues and vascular wall is achieved through the interaction of specific receptor proteins and promoters of target genes. In addition to these delayed steroid actions, rapid effects of steroids have been reported in various tissues that were clearly incompatible with the classic theory of genomic steroid action. METHODS AND RESULTS: Because high doses of 17beta-estradiol have been shown to modulate intracellular cAMP levels in vascular smooth muscle cells, steroid-induced stimulation of adenylate cyclase stimulation and phosphorylation of cAMP response element binding protein was investigated in porcine coronary artery vascular smooth muscle cells. Aldosterone induces a approximately 1.5- to 2.5-fold increase in intracellular cAMP levels (EC50 approximately 0.01 to 0.1 nmol/L) within 1 minute, whereas 17beta-estradiol and hydrocortisone act only at supraphysiological concentrations (10 micromol/L). Aldosterone-induced changes in intracellular cAMP are calcium dependent; they are not blocked by inhibitors of mineralocorticoid receptors, transcription, or protein synthesis. In addition, aldosterone induces a time-dependent phosphorylation of cAMP response element binding protein with potential transcriptional importance. CONCLUSIONS: A nongenomic modulation of vascular smooth muscle cells by aldosterone is consistent with the data that aldosterone, not estrogen, is the physiological stimulus for cAMP.  (+info)

Effects of spironolactone and angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor on left ventricular hypertrophy in patients with essential hypertension. (2/759)

There is increasing evidence for important cardiovascular effects of aldosterone via classical mineralocorticoid receptors in the heart. Administration of aldosterone with excess salt produces both cardiac hypertrophy and interstitial cardiac fibrosis in rats, and concomitant administration of potassium canrenoate at a dose that only modestly lowers blood pressure completely blocks the cardiac effects of aldosterone. In the present study, we examined the effect on left ventricular hypertrophy of adding a low dose of the mineralocorticoid receptor antagonist spironolactone (25 mg/d) to an angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor (enalapril maleate) in patients with essential hypertension. Eighteen untreated patients with moderate to severe essential hypertension based on the WHO/ISH guidelines participated in this study. Subjects were treated with either an angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor alone (group I: 10 patients, 4 men and 6 women, mean age 56 +/- 18 yr) or an angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor plus spironolactone (group II: 8 patients, 3 men and 5 women, mean age 59 +/- 14 yr) for 9 mo. Left ventricular mass index, various echocardiographic variables, mean blood pressure, plasma renin activity, and plasma aldosterone concentration before treatment were similar in the two groups. Blood pressure of both groups decreased significantly and similarly after antihypertensive treatment (group I, 136 +/- 9/82 +/- 9 mmHg; group II, 133 +/- 9/85 +/- 10 mmHg). Left ventricular mass index also decreased significantly in both groups (group I, -10.2 +/- 7.1%; group II, -18.1 +/- 6.9%). The extent of reduction was significantly greater in the spironolactone group (group II) (p < 0.05 vs. group I). In group II patients, spironolactone did not cause any side effects during the observation period. We conclude that spironolactone may have beneficial effects on left ventricular hypertrophy in patients with essential hypertension who are receiving an angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor.  (+info)

Brain mineralocorticoid receptor control of blood pressure and kidney function in normotensive rats. (3/759)

Brain mineralocorticoid receptors appear to contribute to mineralocorticoid hypertension and may be involved in blood pressure control in normotensive rats. We examined the effect of blockade of central mineralocorticoid receptors with the use of a selective antagonist (RU28318) on cardiovascular and renal function in conscious normotensive rats. The contribution of renal innervation was evaluated in rats with bilaterally denervated kidneys. Young adult, male Wistar rats were trained for systolic blood pressure measurement by a tail sphygmographic method and accustomed to metabolic cages for collection of urine. One week before experimentation, an intracerebroventricular cannula was implanted. Systolic blood pressure was diminished 30 minutes after an intracerebroventricular dose of 10 ng of RU28318. The effect was maximal at 8 hours and was still present after 24 hours. Blood pressure returned to the basal level by 48 hours. During the period 0 to 8 hours after intracerebroventricular injection, rats treated with the antagonist showed an increase in diuresis and urinary electrolyte excretion. No significant effect on plasma renin activity, measured 8 and 30 hours after administration of RU28318, was observed. In denervated rats, the decrease in systolic blood pressure after administration of RU28318 was reduced. The difference was statistically significant compared with controls at 2 hours but not at 8 hours, and blood pressure returned to the basal value by 24 hours. The increases in diuresis and urinary electrolyte excretion induced by RU28318 were abolished in denervated rats. These results show that brain mineralocorticoid receptors are involved in blood pressure regulation and kidney function homeostasis in conscious normotensive rats. The renal nerves appear to participate in the brain mineralocorticoid receptor control of blood pressure.  (+info)

Lesion-induced plasticity in rat vestibular nucleus neurones dependent on glucocorticoid receptor activation. (4/759)

1. We have recently shown that neurones in the rostral region of the medial vestibular nucleus (MVN) develop a sustained increase in their intrinsic excitability within 4 h of a lesion of the vestibular receptors of the ipsilateral inner ear. This increased excitability may be important in the rapid recovery of resting activity in these neurones during 'vestibular compensation', the behavioural recovery that follows unilateral vestibular deafferentation. In this study we investigated the role of the acute stress that normally accompanies the symptoms of unilateral labyrinthectomy (UL), and in particular the role of glucocorticoid receptors (GRs), in the development of the increase in excitability in the rostral MVN cells after UL in the rat. 2. The compensatory increase in intrinsic excitability (CIE) of MVN neurones failed to occur in animals that were labyrinthectomized under urethane anaesthesia and kept at a stable level of anaesthesia for either 4 or 6 h after UL, so that they did not experience the stress normally associated with the vestibular deafferentation syndrome. In these animals, 'mimicking' the stress response by administration of the synthetic GR agonist dexamethasone at the time of UL, restored and somewhat potentiated CIE in the MVN cells. Administration of dexamethasone in itself had no effect on the intrinsic excitability of MVN cells in sham-operated animals. 3. In animals that awoke after labyrinthectomy, and which therefore experienced the full range of oculomotor and postural symptoms of UL, there was a high level of Fos-like immunoreactivity in the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus over 1.5-3 h post-UL, indicating a strong activation of the stress axis. 4. The GR antagonist RU38486 administered at the time of UL abolished CIE in the rostral MVN cells, and significantly delayed behavioural recovery as indicated by the persistence of circular walking. The mineralocorticoid receptor (MR) antagonist spironolactone administered at the time of UL had no effect. 5. Vestibular compensation thus involves a novel form of 'metaplasticity' in the adult brain, in which the increase in intrinsic excitability of rostral MVN cells and the initial behavioural recovery are dependent both on the vestibular deafferentation and on the activation of glucocorticoid receptors, during the acute behavioural stress response that follows UL. These findings help elucidate the beneficial effects of neuroactive steroids on vestibular plasticity in various species including man, while the lack of such an effect in the guinea-pig may be due to the significant differences in the physiology of the stress axis in that species.  (+info)

The effect of spironolactone on morbidity and mortality in patients with severe heart failure. Randomized Aldactone Evaluation Study Investigators. (5/759)

BACKGROUND AND METHODS: Aldosterone is important in the pathophysiology of heart failure. In a doubleblind study, we enrolled 1663 patients who had severe heart failure and a left ventricular ejection fraction of no more than 35 percent and who were being treated with an angiotensin-converting-enzyme inhibitor, a loop diuretic, and in most cases digoxin. A total of 822 patients were randomly assigned to receive 25 mg of spironolactone daily, and 841 to receive placebo. The primary end point was death from all causes. RESULTS: The trial was discontinued early, after a mean follow-up period of 24 months, because an interim analysis determined that spironolactone was efficacious. There were 386 deaths in the placebo group (46 percent) and 284 in the spironolactone group (35 percent; relative risk of death, 0.70; 95 percent confidence interval, 0.60 to 0.82; P<0.001). This 30 percent reduction in the risk of death among patients in the spironolactone group was attributed to a lower risk of both death from progressive heart failure and sudden death from cardiac causes. The frequency of hospitalization for worsening heart failure was 35 percent lower in the spironolactone group than in the placebo group (relative risk of hospitalization, 0.65; 95 percent confidence interval, 0.54 to 0.77; P<0.001). In addition, patients who received spironolactone had a significant improvement in the symptoms of heart failure, as assessed on the basis of the New York Heart Association functional class (P<0.001). Gynecomastia or breast pain was reported in 10 percent of men who were treated with spironolactone, as compared with 1 percent of men in the placebo group (P<0.001). The incidence of serious hyperkalemia was minimal in both groups of patients. CONCLUSIONS: Blockade of aldosterone receptors by spironolactone, in addition to standard therapy, substantially reduces the risk of both morbidity and death among patients with severe heart failure.  (+info)

Aldosterone activates Na+/H+ exchange in vascular smooth muscle cells by nongenomic and genomic mechanisms. (6/759)

BACKGROUND: In vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs), Na+/H+ exchange (NHE) plays an important role in intracellular pH (pHi) regulation. Recently, nongenomic effect of aldosterone (ALDO) on NHE activity has been suggested in VSMCs. However, the nongenomic and genomic effects of ALDO on NHE and the intracellular signaling mechanisms for these effects have not fully been determined in VSMCs. METHODS: The effects of short- (3 hr) and long- (24 hr) term exposure to ALDO on NHE activity were examined in cultured VSMCs from rat thoracic aortae by using single-cell pHi measurement with the pH-sensitive dye 2'7'-bis(carboxyethyl)-5(6)-carboxyfluorescein. The NHE activity was calculated from the initial rate of Na+-dependent pHi recovery after acid load. RESULTS: The NHE activity significantly increased after short- and long-term exposure of VSMCs to ALDO (10(-6) M). The inhibitors of gene transcription (actinomycin D) and of protein synthesis (cycloheximide) had no effect on the short-term ALDO effect, but inhibited the long-term ALDO effect. The antagonists of the mineralocorticoid receptor (MR) (spironolactone) and of the glucocorticoid receptor (GR) (RU38486) caused no effect on the short-term ALDO effect, but inhibited the long-term ALDO effect. Two protein kinase C (PKC) inhibitors (staurosporine A and calphostin C) and PKC down-regulation (24 hr pre-exposure to phobol 12-myristate 13-acetate, PMA) inhibited both the short- and long-term ALDO effects. Exposure of VSMCs to PMA for 3 hours mimicked the short-term effect of ALDO on NHE activity. ALDO significantly increased PKC activity in VSMCs. The short-term ALDO effect was inhibited by disruptors of microtubule (colchicine) and of filamentous-actin (cytochalasin B). Long-term exposure of ALDO caused a threefold increase in NHE (NHE-1) mRNA levels. CONCLUSIONS: The short-term effect of ALDO on NHE activity is not mediated through either MR or GR, occurs independent of gene transcription and protein synthesis, and occurs through a mechanism involving the structural elements of cytoskeleton. The long-term effect of ALDO on NHE activity occurs through both MR and GR and requires gene transcription and protein synthesis. Both short- and long-term effects of ALDO are mediated through PKC activation. Therefore, ALDO activates NHE by nongenomic and genomic mechanisms in VSMCs.  (+info)

Influence of spironolactone on neonatal screening for congenital adrenal hyperplasia. (7/759)

AIM: To determine if the diuretic spironolactone cross reacts with 17alpha-hydroxyprogesterone (17OHP) in an enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) kit used for the mass screening of congenital adrenal hyperplasia. METHODS: Concentrations of 17OHP on a blood filter paper disc were measured using an ELISA kit (kit C-7: ENZAPLATE N-17alpha -OHP-7; Chiron, Tokyo, Japan). The cross reactivity of spironolactone and its metabolites with 17OHP was determined. The concentrations of spironolactone and its metabolites in blood were measured using HPLC (high performance liquid chromatography). RESULTS: Spironolactone cross reacted with 17OHP using kit C-7 (0.01%), by increasing 17OHP concentration in a dose dependent manner. The blood concentration of spironolactone and its metabolites was nearly 900 ng/ml, high enough to show an additive effect on the 17OHP concentration. About 12% of the false positive cases screened using the kit were due to the administration of spironolactone. CONCLUSIONS: Spironolactone interferes with 17OHP concentrations, leading to false positive test results for CAH.  (+info)

Effect of poststroke captopril treatment on mortality associated with hemorrhagic stroke in stroke-prone rats. (8/759)

We tested the ability of captopril treatment (50 mg/kg/day p.o.), initiated 2 weeks before stroke or up to 5 days after stroke, to alter the onset of stroke and death after stroke in Kyoto Wistar stroke-prone spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHRsp). The benefits of blood pressure and aldosterone suppression during captopril treatment were assessed. SHRsp developed a 100% mortality rate with intracerebral hemorrhage by 16 weeks of age. Captopril treatment, started 2 weeks before or at the initiation of stroke, suppressed plasma aldosterone and equally prevented mortality to a mean age of >27 weeks. Treatment started 5 days after stroke extended the mean lifespan to >23 weeks. The re-elevation of plasma aldosterone (via osmotic pumps to levels in untreated SHRsp) during captopril treatment, before stroke, allowed stroke to develop. The initiation of the latter manipulation in pre- or poststroke captopril-treated SHRsp at a latter age (23 weeks) didn't alter the lifespan of SHRsp (death occurred at about 28 weeks). The antistroke effects of captopril treatment occurred without an antihypertensive effect, weren't altered by enhancing hypertension during treatment (with dexamethasone), and couldn't be duplicated by antihypertensive treatment with hydralazine. Spironolactone treatment didn't duplicate the effects of captopril. The suppression of plasma aldosterone may retard the onset of stroke in SHRsp during captopril treatment but likely other factors prolong life in pre- and poststroke SHRsp receiving long-term captopril treatment. The observation that spironolactone treatment couldn't duplicate the effects of captopril suggests that aldosterone may facilitate stroke through nongenomic receptor mechanisms.  (+info)