Background: The activity of the renin-angiotensin system is usually evaluated as plasma renin activity (PRA, ngAI/ml per h) but the reproducibility of this enzymatic assay is notoriously scarce. We compared the inter and intralaboratory reproducibilities of PRA with those of a new automated chemiluminescent assay, which allows the direct quantification of immunoreactive renin [chemiluminescent immunoreactive renin (CLIR), μU/ml]. Methods: Aliquots from six pool plasmas of patients with very low to very high PRA levels were measured in 12 centres with both the enzymatic and the direct assays. The same methods were applied to three control plasma preparations with known renin content. Results: In pool plasmas, mean PRA values ranged from 0.14 ± 0.08 to 18.9 ± 4.1 ngAI/ml per h, whereas those of CLIR ranged from 4.2 ± 1.7 to 436 ± 47 μU/ml. In control plasmas, mean values of PRA and of CLIR were always within the expected range. Overall, there was a significant correlation between the two methods (r = 0.73, P <0.01). Similar correlations were found in plasmas subdivided in those with low, intermediate and high PRA. However, the coefficients of variation among laboratories found for PRA were always higher than those of CLIR, ranging from 59.4 to 17.1% for PRA, and from 41.0 to 10.7% for CLIR (P <0.01). Also, the mean intralaboratory variability was higher for PRA than for CLIR, being respectively, 8.5 and 4.5% (P <0.01). Conclusion: The measurement of renin with the chemiluminescent method is a reliable alternative to PRA, having the advantage of a superior inter and intralaboratory reproducibility.
- Chemiluminescent immunoreactive renin
- Inter and intralaboratory reproducibility
- Plasma renin activity
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
- Internal Medicine