Oxidant Stress and Blood Pressure Responses to Angiotensin II Administration in Rats Fed Varying Salt Diets*

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To examine the hypothesis that NAD(P)H ox idase (Nox)-derived superoxide generation is involved in the development of angiotensin II (ANG II)-induced hypertension, we evaluated the responses to ANG II infusion (65 ng/min; osmotic mini-pump) for 2 weeks in rats treated with or without apocynin (APO) (inhibitor of Nox subunits assembly) in drinking water (12 mmol/L). Rats were grouped according to their diets with varying salt content (normal salt [NS], 0.4%; high salt [HS], 8%; low salt [LS], 0.03%) given during the 2-week experimental period. The variation in salt intake did not alter mean arterial pressure (MAP, recorded via pre-implanted arterial catheter) but showed proportionate levels in urinary excretion rate of Isoprostaglandin2α (UISOV; NS, 179 ± 26; HS, 294 ± 38; LS, 125 ± 7 ng/kg/24 h). Treatment with ANG II increased MAP proportional to salt intake (NS, 126 ± 3 to 160 ± 5; HS, 116 ± 4 to 184 ± 5; LS, 125 ± 1 to 154 ± 5 mm Hg). However, ANG II increased UISOV only in NS rats (250 ± 19 ng/kg/24 h) but not in HS or LS rats. In response to ANG II, Nox subunits protein expression increased in HS but not in the NS or LS rats. Apocynin treatment partially ameliorated these changes in Nox proteins in HS rats but did not alter ANG II-induced increases in MAP or UISOV. These data suggest that Nox activation may not be the sole factor or alternatively, that a constitutively active isoform of Nox is involved in oxidative stress mechanism that is associated with dietary salt or ANG II-induced hypertension.

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