We tested the hypothesis that endogenous angiotensin II participates in the direct and reflex effects of adenosine on the sympathetic nervous system. Nine healthy men were studied after 1 wk of the angiotensin II type I receptor antagonist losartan (100 mg daily) or placebo, according to a double-blind randomized crossover design. Bilateral forearm blood flows, NE appearance rates, and total body NE spillover were determined before and during graded brachial arterial infusion of adenosine (0.5, 1.5, 5, and 15 microg/100 ml forearm tissue) and nitroprusside. Adenosine increased total body NE spillover (P < 0.05) whereas nitroprusside did not. Losartan lowered BP (P < 0.05), had no effect on total body NE spillover at rest, or forearm vasodilation during either infusion, but reduced the systemic noradrenergic response to adenosine from 1.0+/-0.4 nmol/min on the placebo day to 0.2+/-0.3 nmol/min (P < 0.01), and forearm NE appearance rate in response to adenosine was lower in the infused, as compared with the contralateral arm (P = 0.04). The sympatho-excitatory reflex elicited by adenosine is mediated through pathways involving the angiotensin II type I receptor. Interactions between adenosine and angiotensin II may assume importance during ischemia or congestive heart failure and could contribute to the benefit of converting enzyme inhibition in these conditions.


G A Rongen, S C Brooks, S i Ando, B L Abramson, J S Floras


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