Imbalanced plasma ACE and ACE2 level in the uremic patients with cardiovascular diseases and its change during a single hemodialysis session.
ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND:The renin-angiotensin system (RAS) has significant influences on heart and renal disease progression. Angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) and angiotensin converting enzyme II (ACE2) are major peptidases of RAS components and play counteracting functions through angiotensin II (Ang II)/ATIR and angiotensin-(1-7) (Ang-(1-7))/Mas axis, respectively. METHODS:There were 360 uremic patients on regular hemodialysis (HD) treatment (inclusive of 119?HD patients with cardiovascular diseases (CVD) and 241?HD patients without CVD and 50 healthy subjects were enrolled in this study. Plasma ACE, ACE2, Ang II and Ang-(1-7) levels of the HD patients were determined. RESULTS:We compared pre-HD levels of plasma ACE, ACE2, Ang II and Ang-(1-7) in the HD patients with and without CVD to those of the controls. The HD patients, particularly those with CVD, showed a significant increase in the levels of ACE and Ang II, whereas ACE2 and Ang-(1-7) levels were lower than those in the healthy controls. Therefore, imbalanced ACE/ACE2 was observed in the HD patients with CVD. In the course of a single HD session, the plasma ACE, ACE/ACE2 and Ang II levels in the HD patients with CVD were increased from pre-HD to post-HD. On the contrary, ACE2 levels were decreased after the HD session. These changes were not detected in the HD patients without CVD. CONCLUSIONS:Pathogenically imbalanced circulating ACE/ACE2 was detected in the HD patients, particularly those with CVD. HD session could increase ACE/Ang II/AT1R axis and decrease ACE2/Ang-(1-7)/Mas axis activity in the circulation of HD patients with CVD.
Project description:The angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE)/Angiotensin II (Ang II) and angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2)/angiotensin-(1-7) (Ang-(1-7)) pathways are coexpressed in most tissues. The balance between these pathways determines, at least in part, whether tissue damage will occur in response to pathological stimuli. The present study tested the hypothesis that male sex and high blood pressure are associated with ACE/ACE2 imbalance in the lungs. Experiments were conducted in male and female Wistar rats and spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHRs). Lung ACE and ACE2 gene expression was also evaluated in normotensive and hypertensive humans using the Genotype-Tissue Expression (GTEx) project. Compared with Wistar rats and female SHRs, male SHRs displayed reduced lung ACE2 mRNA, ACE2 protein abundance and ACE2 activity, and increased Ang II concentration. Lung ACE mRNA levels were higher in male SHRs than in Wistar rats, whereas lung ACE protein abundance and activity were similar among the four groups of rats. Lung Ang-(1-7) concentration was higher in female than in male SHRs (89 ± 17 vs. 43 ± 2 pg/g, P<0.05). Lung ACE to ACE2 mRNA expression in hypertensive patients was significantly higher than that in normotensive subjects. Taken together, these results demonstrate that male hypertensive rats display imbalance between the ACE/Ang II and ACE2/Ang-(1-7) pathways in the lungs mainly attributable to ACE2 down-regulation. Further studies should be conducted to investigate whether this imbalance between ACE/ACE2 may promote and accelerate lung injury in respiratory infections, including coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
Project description:Angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) 2 is a negative regulator of the renin angiotensin system (RAS) through its role to degrade angiotensin II. In rats with subtotal nephrectomy (STNx), adverse cardiac remodelling occurs despite elevated cardiac ACE2 activity. We hypothesised that diminazene aceturate (DIZE), which has been described as having an off-target effect to activate ACE2, would have beneficial cardiac effects in STNx rats. STNx led to hypertension, diastolic dysfunction, left ventricular hypertrophy, cardiac fibrosis, and increased cardiac ACE, ACE2, Ang II and Ang 1-7 levels. Cardiac gene expression of ADAM17 was also increased. In STNx, two-weeks of subcutaneous DIZE (15mg/kg/d) had no effect on blood pressure but improved diastolic dysfunction and cardiac fibrosis, reduced ADAM17 mRNA and shifted the cardiac RAS balance to a cardioprotective profile with reduced ACE and Ang II. There was no change in cardiac ACE2 activity or in cardiac Ang 1-7 levels with DIZE. In conclusion, our results suggest that DIZE exerts a protective effect on the heart under the pathological condition of kidney injury. This effect was not due to improved kidney function, a fall in blood pressure or a reduction in LVH but was associated with a reduction in cardiac ACE and cardiac Ang II levels. As in vitro studies showed no direct effect of DIZE on ACE2 or ACE activity, the precise mechanism of action of DIZE remains to be determined.
Project description:Angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) is expressed in the kidney and may be a renoprotective enzyme, since it converts angiotensin (Ang) II to Ang-(1-7). ACE2 has been detected in urine from patients with chronic kidney disease. We measured urinary ACE2 activity and protein levels in renal transplant patients (age 54 yrs, 65% male, 38% diabetes, n = 100) and healthy controls (age 45 yrs, 26% male, n = 50), and determined factors associated with elevated urinary ACE2 in the patients. Urine from transplant subjects was also assayed for ACE mRNA and protein. No subjects were taking inhibitors of the renin-angiotensin system. Urinary ACE2 levels were significantly higher in transplant patients compared to controls (p = 0.003 for ACE2 activity, and p≤0.001 for ACE2 protein by ELISA or western analysis). Transplant patients with diabetes mellitus had significantly increased urinary ACE2 activity and protein levels compared to non-diabetics (p<0.001), while ACE2 mRNA levels did not differ. Urinary ACE activity and protein were significantly increased in diabetic transplant subjects, while ACE mRNA levels did not differ from non-diabetic subjects. After adjusting for confounding variables, diabetes was significantly associated with urinary ACE2 activity (p = 0.003) and protein levels (p<0.001), while female gender was associated with urinary mRNA levels for both ACE2 and ACE. These data indicate that urinary ACE2 is increased in renal transplant recipients with diabetes, possibly due to increased shedding from tubular cells. Urinary ACE2 could be a marker of renal renin-angiotensin system activation in these patients.
Project description:The novel SARS coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 pandemic may be particularly deleterious to patients with underlying cardiovascular disease (CVD). The mechanism for SARS-CoV-2 infection is the requisite binding of the virus to the membrane-bound form of angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) and internalization of the complex by the host cell. Recognition that ACE2 is the coreceptor for the coronavirus has prompted new therapeutic approaches to block the enzyme or reduce its expression to prevent the cellular entry and SARS-CoV-2 infection in tissues that express ACE2 including lung, heart, kidney, brain, and gut. ACE2, however, is a key enzymatic component of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system (RAAS); ACE2 degrades ANG II, a peptide with multiple actions that promote CVD, and generates Ang-(1-7), which antagonizes the effects of ANG II. Moreover, experimental evidence suggests that RAAS blockade by ACE inhibitors, ANG II type 1 receptor antagonists, and mineralocorticoid antagonists, as well as statins, enhance ACE2 which, in part, contributes to the benefit of these regimens. In lieu of the fact that many older patients with hypertension or other CVDs are routinely treated with RAAS blockers and statins, new clinical concerns have developed regarding whether these patients are at greater risk for SARS-CoV-2 infection, whether RAAS and statin therapy should be discontinued, and the potential consequences of RAAS blockade to COVID-19-related pathologies such as acute and chronic respiratory disease. The current perspective critically examines the evidence for ACE2 regulation by RAAS blockade and statins, the cardiovascular benefits of ACE2, and whether ACE2 blockade is a viable approach to attenuate COVID-19.
Project description:Pharmacological blockade of the renin–angiotensin–aldosterone system (RAAS) with angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE)-inhibitors and angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) are cornerstone treatments in several cardiovascular disease entities . The RAAS is a central regulator of blood pressure, consisting of two counterregulatory pathways, commonly described as classical and nonclassical, respectively . The main effect of classical RAAS activation is the generation of angiotensin (Ang)-II by ACE . In contrast, non-classical RAAS activation results in cleavage of Ang-II by angiotensin converting enzyme-2 (ACE2) to form angiotensin 1–7, which directly counteracts the effects of classical RAAS activation . Critically ill #COVID19 patients display markedly increased alternative angiotensin pathway activity compared to healthy controls, reflected by increased blood ACE2 levels as well as decreased angiotensin-II and enhanced angiotensin-1–7 formationhttps://bit.ly/2MU1z4z
Project description:In angiotensin II (Ang II)-dependent hypertensive rats there is an increased expression of proximal tubule angiotensinogen (AGT), collecting duct renin and angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE), which contributes to intratubular Ang II formation. Ang II acts on Ang II type 1 receptors promoting sodium retention and vasoconstriction. However concurrently, the ACE2-Ang-(1-7) axis and the expression of kallikrein and medullary prostaglandins counteract the effects of Ang II, promoting natriuresis and vasodilation. Human studies demonstrate that dietary potassium (K+) intake lowers blood pressure. In this report we evaluate the expression of AGT, ACE, medullary prorenin/renin, ACE2, kallikrein and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) in Ang II-infused rats fed with high K+ diet (2%) for 14 days. Dietary K+ enhances diuresis in non-infused and in Ang II-infused rats. The rise in systolic blood pressure in Ang II-infused rats was attenuated by dietary K+. Ang II-infused rats showed increased renal protein levels of AGT, ACE and medullary prorenin and renin. This effect was attenuated in the Ang II + K+ group. Ang II infusion decreased ACE2 compared to the control group; however, K+ diet prevented this effect in the renal medulla. Furthermore, medullary COX-2 was dramatically induced by K+ diet in non-infused and in Ang II infused rats. Dietary K+ greatly increased kallikrein immunostaining in normotensive rats and in Ang II-hypertensive rats. These results indicate that a high K+ diet attenuates Ang II-dependent hypertension by preventing the induction of ACE, AGT and collecting duct renin and by enhancing medullary COX-2 and ACE2 protein expression in the kidney.
Project description:Angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) has been recognized as a potential entry receptor for SARS-CoV-2 infection. Binding of SARS-CoV-2 to ACE2 allows engagement with pulmonary epithelial cells and pulmonary infection with the virus. ACE2 is an essential component of renin-angiotensin system (RAS), and involved in promoting protective effects to counter-regulate angiotensin (Ang) II-induced pathogenesis. The use of angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs) and ACE inhibitors (ACEIs) was implicitly negated during the early phase of COVID-19 pandemic, considering the role of these antihypertensive agents in enhancing ACE2 expression thereby promoting the susceptibility to SARS-CoV-2. However, no clinical data has supported this assumption, but indeed evidence demonstrates that ACEIs and ARBs, besides their cardioprotective effects in COVID-19 patients with cardiovascular diseases, might also be beneficial in acute lung injuries by preserving the ACE2 function and switching the balance from deleterious ACE/Ang II/AT<sub>1</sub> receptor axis towards a protective ACE2/Ang (1-7)/Mas receptor axis.
Project description:Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) employs angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) as its receptor for cell entrance, and studies have suggested that upon viral binding, ACE2 catalytic activity could be inhibited; therefore, impacting the regulation of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system (RAAS). To date, only few studies have evaluated the impact of SARS-CoV-2 infection on the blood levels of the components of the RAAS. The objective of this study was to determine the blood levels of ACE, ACE2, angiotensin-II, angiotensin (1-7), and angiotensin (1-9) at hospital admission and discharge in a group of patients presenting with severe or critical evolution of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). We showed that ACE, ACE2, angiotensin (1-7), and angiotensin (1-9) were similar in patients with critical and severe COVID-19. However, at admission, angiotensin-II levels were significantly higher in patients presenting as critical, compared to patients presenting with severe COVID-19. We conclude that blood levels of angiotensin-II are increased in hospitalized patients with COVID-19 presenting the critical outcome of the disease. We propose that early measurement of Ang-II could be a useful biomarker for identifying patients at higher risk for extremely severe progression of the disease.
Project description:Introduction: Renin angiotensin system (RAS) plays a role in idiopathic nephrotic syndrome (INS). Most studies investigated only the classical RAS axis. Therefore, the aims of the present study were to evaluate urinary levels of RAS molecules related to classical and to counter-regulatory axes in pediatric patients with INS, to compare the measurements with levels in healthy controls and to search for associations with inflammatory molecules, proteinuria and disease treatment. Subjects and methods: This cross-sectional study included 31 patients with INS and 19 healthy controls, matched for age and sex. Patients and controls were submitted to urine collection for measurement of RAS molecules [Ang II, Ang-(1-7), ACE and ACE2] by enzyme immunoassay and cytokines by Cytometric Bead Array. Findings in INS patients were compared according to proteinuria: absent (<150?mg/dl, n = 15) and present (?150?mg/dl, n = 16). Results: In comparison to controls, INS patients had increased Ang II, Ang-(1-7) and ACE, levels while ACE2 was reduced. INS patients with proteinuria had lower levels of ACE2 than those without proteinuria. ACE2 levels were negatively correlated with 24-h-proteinuria. Urinary concentrations of MCP-1/CCL2 were significantly higher in INS patients, positively correlated with Ang II and negatively with Ang-(1-7). ACE2 concentrations were negatively correlated with IP-10/CXCL-10 levels, which, in turn, were positively correlated with 24-h-proteinuria. Conclusion: INS patients exhibited changes in RAS molecules and in chemokines. Proteinuria was associated with low levels of ACE2 and high levels of inflammatory molecules.
Project description:Aerobic exercise training leads to a physiological, nonpathological left ventricular hypertrophy; however, the underlying biochemical and molecular mechanisms of physiological left ventricular hypertrophy are unknown. The role of microRNAs regulating the classic and the novel cardiac renin-angiotensin (Ang) system was studied in trained rats assigned to 3 groups: (1) sedentary; (2) swimming trained with protocol 1 (T1, moderate-volume training); and (3) protocol 2 (T2, high-volume training). Cardiac Ang I levels, Ang-converting enzyme (ACE) activity, and protein expression, as well as Ang II levels, were lower in T1 and T2; however, Ang II type 1 receptor mRNA levels (69% in T1 and 99% in T2) and protein expression (240% in T1 and 300% in T2) increased after training. Ang II type 2 receptor mRNA levels (220%) and protein expression (332%) were shown to be increased in T2. In addition, T1 and T2 were shown to increase ACE2 activity and protein expression and Ang (1-7) levels in the heart. Exercise increased microRNA-27a and 27b, targeting ACE and decreasing microRNA-143 targeting ACE2 in the heart. Left ventricular hypertrophy induced by aerobic training involves microRNA regulation and an increase in cardiac Ang II type 1 receptor without the participation of Ang II. Parallel to this, an increase in ACE2, Ang (1-7), and Ang II type 2 receptor in the heart by exercise suggests that this nonclassic cardiac renin-angiotensin system counteracts the classic cardiac renin-angiotensin system. These findings are consistent with a model in which exercise may induce left ventricular hypertrophy, at least in part, altering the expression of specific microRNAs targeting renin-angiotensin system genes. Together these effects might provide the additional aerobic capacity required by the exercised heart.