Lengthy-term use of blood stress medicine might be contributing to kidney injury

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New kidney analysis from the College of Virginia College of Drugs is elevating issues that long-term use of medicine generally prescribed to deal with high-blood stress and coronary heart failure might be contributing to kidney injury.

Sufferers ought to proceed taking the medicines, which embody the well-known and extensively used ACE inhibitors, the researchers say. However the scientists are urging research to higher perceive the medication’ long-term results.

Our research present that renin-producing cells are answerable for the injury. We at the moment are specializing in understanding how these cells, that are so vital to defend us from drops in blood stress and keep our well-being, endure such transformation and induce kidney injury. What is required is to determine what substances these cells make that result in uncontrolled vessel development.”

Maria Luisa Sequeira Lopez MD, UVA’s Division of Pediatrics and Baby Well being Analysis Middle

The causes of kidney injury

Continual hypertension impacts a billion individuals around the globe. The UVA researchers needed to higher perceive why extreme types of the situation are sometimes accompanied by thickening of the arteries and small blood vessels within the kidney, resulting in organ injury.

They discovered that specialised kidney cells known as renin cells play an vital position. These cells usually produce renin, a significant hormone that helps the physique regulate blood stress. However dangerous adjustments within the renin cells may cause the cells to invade the partitions of the kidney’s blood vessels. The renin cells then set off a buildup of one other cell sort, easy muscle cells, that trigger the vessels to thicken and stiffen. The outcome: Blood cannot movement by way of the kidney because it ought to.

Additional, the researchers discovered, long-term use of medicine that inhibit the renin-angiotensin system, resembling ACE inhibitors, or angiotensin receptor blockers, have an analogous impact. These medication are extensively used for a lot of functions, together with treating hypertension, congestive coronary heart failure and coronary heart assaults, in addition to to forestall main coronary heart issues. However long-term use of the medication was related to hardened kidney vessels in each lab mice and people, the scientists discovered.

The researchers notice that the medicines may be lifesaving for sufferers, in order that they stress the significance of constant to take them. However they are saying extra research are wanted to higher perceive the medication’ long-term results on the kidneys.

“It could be vital to conduct potential, randomized managed research to find out the extent of practical and tissue injury in sufferers taking medicines for blood stress management,” stated Ariel Gomez, MD, of UVA’s Division of Pediatrics and Baby Well being Analysis Middle. “It’s crucial to seek out out what molecules these cells make in order that we are able to counteract them to forestall the injury whereas the hypertension is handled with the present medication accessible at the moment.”

Findings printed

The researchers have printed their findings within the scientific journal JCI Perception. The article was chosen as a canopy story. The analysis group consisted of Hirofumi Watanabe, Alexandre G. Martini, Evan A. Brown, Xiuyin Liang, Silvia Medrano, Shin Goto, Ichiei Narita, Lois J. Arend, Sequeira-Lopez and Gomez.

The analysis was supported by the Nationwide Institutes of Well being, grants P50 DK 096373, R01 DK 116718, R01 DK 116196, R01 DK 096373 and R01 HL 148044; and the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science Abroad Analysis Fellowships.


Journal reference:

Watanabe, H., et al. (2021) Inhibition of the renin-angiotensin system causes concentric hypertrophy of renal arterioles in mice and people. JCI Perception. doi.org/10.1172/jci.perception.154337.




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