10 February 1999
Aims: We investigated whether kallikrein infusion attenuates renal injury in Dahl salt-sensitive rats with hypertension and assessed the role of bradykinin-nitric oxide axis in the renal protection using HOE-140, the bradykinin type-2 (B<sub>2</sub>) receptor specific antagonist. Methods: Subdepressor dose of purified rat urinary kallikrein (RUK) (400 ng/day) was continuously infused through the jugular vein by an osmotic mini-pump for 4 weeks in Dahl salt-sensitive (Dahl S) rats fed a high-salt (2% NaCl) diet. Results: Blood pressure increased in a time-dependent manner in Dahl S rats fed a high-salt diet. The RUK infusion did not influence the elevation of blood pressure in Dahl S rats. However, the RUK infusion significantly decreased urinary protein excretion, and increased glomerular filtration rate, as compared with untreated high-salt Dahl S rats. Morphological investigation disclosed that the RUK infusion significantly attenuated glomerulosclerosis and arterial and tubular injuries in the kidney of hypertensive Dahl S rats. The RUK infusion produced an increase in urinary excretions of nitric oxide and cyclic guanosine monophosphate. In addition, the RUK infusion enhanced the generation of nitric oxide from the kidney slices. The functional and morphological effects of the RUK infusion on the kidney were completely lessened by co-administration of the bradykinin B<sub>2</sub>-receptor antagonist, HOE-140. Conclusion: Long-term infusion of subdepressor dose of rat urinary kallikrein attenuates functionally and morphologically the progression of renal injury in Dahl rats susceptible to salt-induced hypertension, and that the protection is mediated by stimulation of bradykinin B<sub>2</sub> receptor.