Experimental biology and medicine (Maywood, N.J.)

A custom rat and baboon hypertension gene array to compare experimental models.

PMID 22228705


One challenge in understanding the polygenic disease of hypertension is elucidating the genes involved and defining responses to environmental factors. Many studies focus on animal models of hypertension; however, this does not necessarily extrapolate to humans. Current technology and cost limitations are prohibitive in fully evaluating hypertension within humans. Thus, we have designed a single-array platform that allows direct comparison of genes relevant to hypertension in animal models and non-human primates/human hypertension. The custom array is targeted to 328 genes known to be potentially related to blood pressure control. Studies compared gene expression in the kidney from normotensive rats and baboons. We found 74 genes expressed in both the rat and baboon kidney, 41 genes expressed in the rat kidney that were not detected in the baboon kidney and 34 genes expressed in the baboon kidney that were not detected in the rat kidney. To begin the evaluation of the array in a pathological condition, kidney gene expression was compared between the salt-sensitive deoxycorticosterone acetate (DOCA) rat model of hypertension and sham animals. Gene expression in the renal cortex and medulla from hypertensive DOCA compared with sham rats revealed three genes differentially expressed in the renal cortex: annexin A1 (up-regulated; relative intensity: 1.316 ± 0.321 versus 2.312 ± 0.283), glutamate-cysteine ligase (down-regulated; relative intensity: 3.738 ± 0.174 versus 2.645 ± 0.364) and glutathione-S transferase (down-regulated; relative intensity: 5.572 ± 0.246 versus 4.215 ± 0.411) and 21 genes differentially expressed in the renal medulla. Interestingly, few genes were differentially expressed in the kidney in the DOCA-salt model of hypertension; this may suggest that the complexity of hypertension may be the result of only a few gene-by-environment responsive events.

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