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Are angiotensins involved in the hemodynamic changes of cirrhosis patients?
Date:6/11/2009

Liver cirrhosis has been recently studied in the light of the new view of the renin angiotensin system (RAS). While the angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE)-Ang 2-AT1 receptor arm contributes to liver tissue injury and fibrosis and the maintenance of basal vascular tonus in non-compensated cirrhosis, the activation of the ACE2-Ang-(1-7)-Mas receptor arm exerts anti-fibrotic actions and probably has also a role in arterial vasodilation in liver cirrhosis. In a previous study published last year in WJG by the same research group, it was shown that chronic treatment with propranolol in cirrhotic patients was characterized by marked changes in the precursors of the RAS cascade (renin and Ang 1 with repercussions on the 2 main RAS components, Ang 2 and Ang-(1-7), in the splanchnic and peripheral circulation. Therefore, the circulating profile of RAS components at different stages of liver cirrhosis and their role in hemodynamic changes of cirrhosis remained unclear.

A research article to be published in May 28, 2009 in the World Journal of Gastroenterology addressed this issue. The research team led by Prof. Santos from the Federal University of Minas Gerais measured the circulating levels of angiotensins in patients at different stages of liver cirrhosis by radioimmunoassay, and further evaluated the influence of RAS components on hemodynamic changes during liver transplantation.

The study showed that the progression of liver dysfunction is characterized by marked changes in circulating Ang-(1-7) and Ang 2 levels. In the initial stages, there were a predominance of Ang-(1-7) rather than Ang 2. On the other hand, advanced stages of cirrhosis showed an activation of the peripheral and splanchnic RAS, and a deviation toward the formation of Ang-(1-7) in the splanchnic circulation. Furthermore, there was a positive correlation between the Ang-(1-7)/Ang 2 ratio and cardiac output and a negative correlation between this ratio and systemic vascular
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Contact: Lai-Fu Li
wjg@wjgnet.com
0086-105-908-0039
World Journal of Gastroenterology
Source:Eurekalert

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