Specific features and roles of renal circulation: angiotensin II revisited.J Physiol Pharmacol. 2006 Nov; 57 Suppl 11:169-78.JP
The status of intrarenal circulation determines in part renal excretion, affects body fluid homeostasis and has a role in long term control of arterial blood pressure. The vascular resistance in the renal cortex and medulla is determined by interaction of a vast array of vasoactive hormones and paracrine factors; among these the role of constrictor angiotensin II and dilator prostaglandins and nitric oxide may appear to be dominating. The focus of this review and underlying studies is on the mechanisms whereby the microcirculation of the renal medulla is protected against the vasoconstrictor action of angiotensin II. In anaesthetized normal rats the three mentioned active agents or their inhibitors were applied and total renal blood flow and cortical, outer- and inner medullary laser-Doppler fluxes were determined; in some studies renal tissue nitric oxide was measured using selective electrodes. We conclude that angiotensin II, acting via AT1 receptors, constricts the renal cortical vasculature; in the medulla its action is effectively buffered by prostaglandin E2 but most probably not by nitric oxide.