Role of angiotensin and sodium intake in cardiac noradrenaline release

Gert Richardt, Eckart Mayer, Albert Schömig

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9 Scopus citations


The effects of exogenous and of endogenous angiotensin on noradrenaline overflow were investigated in saline perfused rat hearts with intact sympathetic nerves. The overflow of endogenous noradrenaline induced by electrical stimulation of the left stellate ganglion was determined in the coronary venous effluent by HPLC. The activity of the renin-angiotensin system was modulated by varying of the nutritional sodium load prior to the experiments. Endogenous angiotensin formation was blocked by angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors. Following high sodium intake, both angiotensin II (100 nmol/l) and angiotensin I (1 μmol/l) caused a marked increase of the electrically evoked noradrenaline overflow. After inhibition of the angiotensin-converting enzyme using captopril (350 nmol/l) or ramiprilat (50 nmol/l), angiotensin I (1 μmol/l) did not enhance noradrenaline overflow. This indicates an active cardiac angiotensin conversion, since the sole administration of captopril and ramiprilat did not affect noradrenaline overflow in rats with high sodium intake. Following low sodium intake, neither angiotensin II (100 nmol/l) nor angiotensin I (1 μmol/l) significantly affected noradrenaline overflow. Both captopril and ramiprilat, however, significantly reduced noradrenaline overflow induced by electrical stimulation, suggesting a facilitory action of endogenous angiotensin under these conditions. This concept was substantiated when evaluating the noradrenaline overflow during control stimulations. Following low sodium intake, stimulation evoked noradrenaline overflow was higher as compared to that after nutritional sodium load. The results are in keeping with a sodium-dependent intracardiac formation of angiotensin II which facilitates noradrenaline release from sympathetic nerve terminals. Following low sodium intake, cardiac angiotensin II formation is active, as indicated by the suppression of noradrenaline release by angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors and the ineffectiveness of exogenous application of angiotensin II. In contrast, suppression of endogenous angiotensin 11 formation in sodium loaded animals sensitizes the sympathetic nerves to exogenous angiotensin.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)297-301
Number of pages5
JournalNaunyn-Schmiedeberg's Archives of Pharmacology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1991
Externally publishedYes


  • Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors
  • Captopril
  • Cardiac renin-angiotensin system
  • Noradrenaline release
  • Ramiprilat


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