Selective Defect in Nitric Oxide Synthesis May Explain the Impaired Endothelium-Dependent Vasodilation in Patients With Essential Hypertension

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Patients with essential hypertension have impaired endothelial NO activity, but the mechanism underlying this abnormality is unknown.


Hypertensive patients have impaired endothelium-dependent vasodilation in response to acetylcholine but preserved NO activity in response to beta-adrenergic stimulation. These findings suggest that the endothelial dysfunction in essential hypertension is due to a selective abnormality of NO synthesis, probably related to a defect in the phosphatidylinositol/Ca2+ signaling pathway. (Circulation. 1998;97:851-856.)

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