Hypertension, Na+/Ca2+ exchanger, and Na+, K+-ATPase

Iwamoto, T.; Kita, S.
June 2006
Kidney International;Jun2006, Vol. 69 Issue 12, p2148
Academic Journal
Hypertension is the most prevalent risk factor for stroke, myocardial infarction, or end-stage renal failure. The critical importance of excess salt intake in the pathogenesis of hypertension is widely recognized, but the mechanisms whereby salt intake elevates blood pressure have puzzled researchers. Recent studies using Na+/Ca2+ exchange inhibitors and genetically engineered mice provide evidence that vascular Na+/Ca2+ exchanger type 1 (NCX1) is involved in the development of salt-dependent hypertension. Endogenous cardiac glycosides, which may contribute to salt-dependent hypertension, seem to be necessary for NCX1-mediated hypertension. Intriguingly, studies using knock-in mice with modified cardiac glycoside binding affinity of Na+,K+-ATPases provide a clear demonstration that this cardiac glycoside-binding site plays an important role in blood pressure regulation. Taken all together: (1) endogenous cardiac glycosides are secreted after high salt intake; (2) these cardiac glycosides inhibit Na+,K+-ATPase in vascular smooth muscle cells; (3) this inhibition results in the elevation of local Na+ on the submembrane area; and (4) this elevation of local Na+ facilitates Ca2+ entry through NCX1, resulting in vasoconstriction. This proposed pathway may have enabled us to explain how to link dietary salt to hypertension.Kidney International (2006) 69, 2148–2154. doi:10.1038/sj.ki.5000421; published online 26 April 2006


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