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The pharmacological profile of a novel angiotensin II type 1 receptor blocker, azilsartan medoxomil, was compared with that of the potent angiotensin II receptor blocker olmesartan medoxomil. Azilsartan, the active metabolite of azilsartan medoxomil, inhibited the binding of [125I]–Sar1–I1e8-angiotensin II to angiotensin II type 1 receptors. Azilsartan medoxomil inhibited angiotensin II-induced pressor responses in rats, and its inhibitory effects lasted 24 h after oral administration. The inhibitory effects of olmesartan medoxomil disappeared within 24 h. ID50 values were 0.12 and 0.55 mg/kg for azilsartan medoxomil and olmesartan medoxomil, respectively. In conscious spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHRs), oral administration of 0.1–1 mg/kg azilsartan medoxomil significantly reduced blood pressure at all doses even 24 h after dosing. Oral administration of 0.1–3 mg/kg olmesartan medoxomil also reduced blood pressure; however, only the two highest doses significantly reduced blood pressure 24 h after dosing. ED25 values were 0.41 and 1.3 mg/kg for azilsartan medoxomil and olmesartan medoxomil, respectively. In renal hypertensive dogs, oral administration of 0.1–1 mg/kg azilsartan medoxomil reduced blood pressure more potently and persistently than that of 0.3–3 mg/kg olmesartan medoxomil. In a 2-week study in SHRs, azilsartan medoxomil showed more stable antihypertensive effects than olmesartan medoxomil and improved the glucose infusion rate, an indicator of insulin sensitivity, more potently (≥ 10 times) than olmesartan medoxomil. Azilsartan medoxomil also exerted more potent antiproteinuric effects than olmesartan medoxomil in Wistar fatty rats. These results suggest that azilsartan medoxomil is a potent angiotensin II receptor blocker that has an attractive pharmacological profile as an antihypertensive agent.