Serum Angiotensinogen Concentration in Relation to Gonadal Hormones, Body Size, and Genotype in Growing Young People

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Multiple factors are thought to influence the level of circulating angiotensinogen (AGT). We showed previously that the serum AGT concentration was significantly related to body mass index (BMI) in a cohort of young people. In the present study, we studied whether levels of the gonadal hormones estradiol and testosterone might also predict the AGT level and might contribute to the BMI effect, since both the production of these hormones and BMI increase with age. In boys (n=127; mean +/- SD age, 14.7 +/- 1.9 years) and girls (n=104; age, 14.8 +/- 1.9 years) studied as a single group, we found a significant association of AGT level with level of estradiol (P=0.015) after adjustment for haplotype, age, race, testosterone concentration, and BMI. In girls studied alone, the level of AGT showed a significantly positive relation to level of testosterone (P=0.043), possibly a result of peripheral conversion of testosterone to estradiol, after adjustment for haplotype, age, race, estradiol concentration, and BMI. In boys, on the other hand, the level of testosterone was inversely related to AGT concentration (P=0.019), again after making adjustments for the other variables. Finally, in pairs of subjects matched for BMI, age, race, and gender where 1 member of each pair had either 1 or 2 copies of an AGT gene haplotype (T235 and -1074t) and the other member had no copy, the level of AGT was higher in the carrier of a haplotype in 24 of the 34 pairs (P<0.001). In conclusion, gonadal hormones are an additional influence on the circulating level of AGT in growing young people. In addition, with matching for BMI and other covariates, there is a strong association of AGT genotype with the serum level of AGT, emphasizing the importance of AGT gene expression as a determinant of the circulating level of AGT. (Hypertension. 1998;32:875-879.)

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