Neuronal nitric oxide synthase within paraventricular nucleus: Blood pressure and baroreflex in two-kidney, one-clip hypertensive rats

Noreen F. Rossi, Maria Maliszewska-Scislo, Haiping Chen, Stephen M. Black, Shruti Sharma, Ruslan Ravikov, Robert A. Augustyniak

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


The renin-angiotensin system is activated in the early phase of two-kidney, one-clip (2K-1C) hypertension. The paraventricular nucleus (PVN) integrates inputs regulating sympathetic outflow. The PVN receives inputs from plasma angiotensin II via projections from circumventricular organs and from renal afferent nerves transmitted via the nucleus tractus solitarii. Nitric oxide within the PVN may exert a sympathoinhibitory effect. These studies tested whether decreasing endogenous nitric oxide by introducing dominant negative (DN) constructs for neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS) into PVN chronically augments hypertension and/or modulates baroreflex function. Male 6-week-old Sprague-Dawley rats underwent sham surgery or right renal artery clipping and placement of radiotelemetry transmitters. One week later, the PVN was injected bilaterally with 250 nl artificial cerebrospinal fluid containing 250 ng μl-1 of RSV β-galactosidase (β-Gal), cytomegalovirus (CMV) wild-type (WT nNOS), or respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) haeme domain or RSV haemeRedF (DN nNOS). Haemodynamics were monitored for 5 weeks. Then left renal nerve electrodes were placed, and 2 days later the rats underwent baroreflex testing in the conscious state. The rise in mean arterial pressure (MAP) was significantly potentiated in the DN nNOS 2K-1C group beyond 15 days after PVN injection. By day 35, MAP in the 2K-1C groups was 152 ± 6.3 (β-Gal), 155.1 ± 6.6 (WT nNOS) and 179 ± 5.4 mmHg (DN nNOS; P < 0.01 versus all other groups). Sham-clipped rats remained normotensive. All groups displayed progressive bradycardia over time that was attenuated in the DN nNOS 2K-1C group. Baroreflex curves shifted to higher pressures, and baroreflex sensitivity of heart rate was diminished to a similar extent in all groups of 2K-1C rats. The baroreflex response of renal sympathetic nerve activity was preserved. The PVN tissue from DN nNOS rats had decreased dimerization of nNOS and generation of total nitric oxide. These findings indicate that chronic interference of nNOS dimerization required for generation of nitric oxide within the PVN potentiates the increase of blood pressure by modulating the sympathoexcitation that accompanies renovascular hypertension.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)845-857
Number of pages13
JournalExperimental Physiology
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2010
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Physiology (medical)


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