Role of renal nerves in development of hypertension in DOCA-salt model in rats: A telemetric approach

Frédéric Jacob, Leah A. Clark, Pilar Ariza Guzman, John W. Osborn

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Centrally mediated hyperactivity of the autonomic nervous system contributes to DOCA hypertension; however, the targeted peripheral vascular bed(s) remain unclear. We propose that if renal sympathetic activity is a factor in the development of DOCA-salt hypertension, then renal denervation (RDNX) should attenuate the hypertensive response. In protocol 1, uninephrectomized RDNX (n = 9) and sham-denervated (n = 6) Sprague-Dawley rats were allowed free access to 0.9% NaCl solution and 0.1% NaCl diet. Mean arterial pressure (MAP) and heart rate were telemetrically recorded for 4 days before and 36 days after DOCA (100 mg/rat) implantation; sodium and water balances were recorded daily. Protocol 2 was similar except that saline intake in sham rats (n = 7) was matched to that observed in RDNX rats of protocol 1 for 30 days; for the last 10 days, the rats were allowed free access to saline. Before DOCA in protocol 1, MAP was lower (P < 0.05) in RDNX rats (99 ± 1 mmHg) compared with sham rats (111 ± 3 mmHg); however, heart rate and sodium and water balances were similar between groups. RDNX attenuated the MAP response to DOCA by ∼50% (ΔMAP = 22 ± 3 mmHg, where Δ is change in MAP) when compared with sham rats (ΔMAP = 38 ± 6). RDNX rats consumed significantly less saline than sham rats, and cumulative sodium and water balances were reduced by 33% and 23%, respectively. In protocol 2, a similar pattern in MAP elevation was observed in RDNX and saline-restricted, sham-denervated rats even when saline restriction was removed. These results indicate that the renal sympathetic nerves are important in hypertension development but that other factors are also involved.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)H1519-H1529
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Heart and Circulatory Physiology
Issue number4 58-4
StatePublished - Oct 2005


  • Deoxycorticosterone-salt hypertension
  • Renal denervation
  • Sympathetic renal nerves


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