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International Journal of Hypertension
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 829786, 5 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/829786
Review Article

Angiotensin II, Aldosterone, and Anti-Inflammatory Lymphocytes: Interplay and Therapeutic Opportunities

1Departamento de Clínica Médica, Faculdade de Ciências Médicas, Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro, Avenida. 28 de Setembro 77, 3o.andar, Sala 329, Vila Isabel, 20551-030 Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil
2Department of Medicine and Lady Davis Institute for Medical Research, Sir Mortimer B. Davis-Jewish General Hospital, McGill University, Montreal, QC, Canada H3T 1E2

Received 16 January 2012; Accepted 13 March 2012

Academic Editor: Mario Fritsch Neves

Copyright © 2012 Daniel Arthur B. Kasal and Ernesto L. Schiffrin. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Inflammation is recognized as an important factor in the pathophysiology of hypertension, with the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system (RAAS) playing a key role in the disease. Initially described because of its contribution to extracellular fluid and electrolyte homeostasis, the RAAS has been implicated in endothelial dysfunction, vascular remodeling, oxidative stress, proinflammatory cytokine production, and adhesion molecule synthesis by the vascular wall. Both angiotensin II and aldosterone are involved in these systemic effects, activating innate and adaptive immune responses. This paper highlights some aspects connecting RAAS to the hypertensive phenotype, based on experimental and clinical studies, with emphasis on new findings regarding the contribution of an increasingly studied population of T lymphocytes: the T-regulatory lymphocytes. These cells can suppress inflammation and may exert beneficial vascular effects in animal models of hypertension.