Growth factor expression in aorta of normotensive and hypertensive rats

R. Sarzani, P. Brecher, A. V. Chobanian

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Hypertension causes biochemical and morphological changes in the vessel wall by unknown mechanisms. Locally produced substances may have a role in mediating these vascular changes. We have studied the expression of platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF) B chain and PDGF A chain, insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-I and IGF-II, endothelial cell growth factor (ECGF), basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF), and transforming growth factor-β TGF-β) in aortic tissue from normotensive rats and rats made hypertensive by deoxycorticosterone (DOC)/salt treatment. Using Northern blotting, we found that genes for each of these growth factors were transcriptionally active in the aorta of both normotensive and hypertensive rats. TGF-β aortic mRNA levels increased up to threefold as a result of DOC/salt hypertension. In contrast, no major changes in the expression of either PDGF chain, IGF-I or II, ECGF, of bFGF were detectable. The results indicate that at least seven genes coding for growth factors that were shown previously to influence growth and function of vascular cells in vitro, are expressed in rat aorta in vivo. These findings support the hypothesis that synthesis and release of growth factors in the arterial wall are involved in autocrine and/or paracrine regulatory mechanisms. In addition, the increased expression of TGF-β in vivo may have a role in mediating the aortic changes induced by hypertension.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1404-1408
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Clinical Investigation
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1989

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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