The role of the renin-angiotensin system in aortic aneurysmal diseases

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68 Scopus citations


The renin-angiotensin system has been invoked in the development of both abdominal and thoracic aortic aneurysms. This has been demonstrated experimentally by the chronic subcutaneous infusion of angiotensin II, which consistently leads to development of abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAAs) in mice. Angiotensin II-induced AAAs have highly heterogenous cellular and extracellular matrix characteristics throughout the aorta that change markedly with infusion duration. The mechanistic basis for the reproducible location of AAA development has not been elucidated, but many insights have been provided, especially regarding receptor and inflammatory mechanisms. A recent clinical study provided limited evidence for extrapolating these results to mechanisms of human AAAs. Experimental evidence has also demonstrated that antagonism of angiotensin II type 1 (AT1) receptors prevents ascending aortic aneurysms in a murine model of Marfan's syndrome. A clinical study is currently ongoing to demonstrate the efficacy of AT1 receptor antagonism in humans.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)99-106
Number of pages8
JournalCurrent Hypertension Reports
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2008

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Work in the authors’ laboratory is supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health (HL62846, HL73085, and HL80100) and the American Heart Association.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine


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