NIH-Supported Study Finds Novel Pathway May Open Doors for New Blood Pressure Treatments
Researchers have found that increasing certain proteins in the blood vessels of mice, relaxed the vessels, lowering the animalís blood pressure. The study provides new avenues for research that may lead to new treatments for hypertension. The study demonstrates that cytochrome P450 plays an important role in the management of high blood pressure, a disease of enormous public health concern.
Akinso: Researchers have found that increasing certain proteins in the blood vessels of mice, relaxed the vessels, lowering the animal's blood pressure.
Zeldin: Targeting this pathway might lead to new therapies, new treatments for hypertension.
Akinso: Dr. Darryl Zeldin is the Acting Clinical Director at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. He says a study shows that cytochrome P450 plays an important role in the management of high blood pressure.
Zeldin: Cytochrome P450 have traditionally been known to be involved in the metabolism of drugs and carcinogens, they’re the major detoxifying enzymes in the body. Recently it's been discovered that these enzymes can also be involved in the metabolism of endogenous fatty acids to compounds called EETs—that have potent effects on the cardiovascular system. What our studied showed was that mice that were genetically engineered to have high levels of these cytochrome P450s in their cardiovascular system did not develop high blood pressure, hypertension when stimulated in ways that the normal mice develop high blood pressure.
Akinso: The study was conducted by researchers at the NIEHS, who teamed with investigators at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee, and Oregon Health and Science University in Portland. Dr. Zeldin says the study provides new avenues for research that may lead to new treatments for hypertension.
Zeldin: The most exciting thing about this study is that it shows how findings can be translated from humans to mice and then back to humans. The study gave us a better understanding of the basic physiology and will lead to additional studies in humans that target this pathway—patients with hypertension, with high blood pressure, to try to develop new ways to treat this disease of enormous public health importance.
Akinso: He adds that this is a great example of a basic finding that improves our understanding of a metabolic pathway that can be used to develop improved treatments for those suffering from a common disease like hypertension. For more information on this study, visit www.niehs.nih.gov. This is Wally Akinso at the National Institutes of Health Bethesda, Maryland.
About This Audio Report
Reporter: Wally Akinso
Sound Bite: Dr. Darryl Zeldin