Decreased elastin in vessel walls puts the pressure on

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Mice haploinsufficient for elastin develop structural changes in vessel walls similar to those seen in patients with mutations in the elastin gene. A new study (see the related article beginning on page 1419) demonstrates that due to mechanical changes in the vessel wall, these animals exhibit increased mean arterial pressures. The results evoke the possibility that alterations in elastin may contribute to the development of essential hypertension in patients.

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