The role of the kidney in initiating hypertension has been much debated. Here we demonstrate that a recently identified gene of yet unknown function, termed SA, which is differentially expressed in the kidney of the spontaneously hypertensive rat, cosegregates with an increase in blood pressure in F2 rats derived from a cross of the spontaneously hypertensive rat with normotensive Wistar-Kyoto rats, accounting for 28 and 21% of the genetic variability in systolic and diastolic blood pressures, respectively. Further, the genotype at this locus appears to determine the level of expression of the gene in the kidney. The findings provide strong evidence for a primary genetic involvement of the kidney in hypertension.
N J Samani, D Lodwick, M Vincent, C Dubay, M A Kaiser, M P Kelly, M Lo, J Harris, J Sassard, M Lathrop