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Sex Differences in Hypertension: Contribution of the Renin-Angiotensin System.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  22795464     Owner:  NLM     Status:  Publisher    
Numerous studies have shown that female human beings exhibit lower blood pressure levels over much of their life span compared with their age-matched counterparts. This sexual dimorphism is apparent in human beings as well as most, if not all, mammals. However, after the onset of menopause blood pressure levels in women increase and become similar to those in men, suggesting an important role of sex hormones in the regulation of blood pressure. The lower blood pressure levels in premenopausal women are associated with a lower risk of development and progression of cardiovascular disease and hypertension compared with age-matched men. This clear female advantage with respect to lower incidence of cardiovascular disease no longer exists after menopause, again highlighting the importance of sex hormones in the pathophysiology of cardiovascular disease in both men and women. In fact, both estrogens and androgens have been implicated in the development of cardiovascular disease and hypertension, with estrogens, in general, being protective and androgens being detrimental. Although the exact mechanisms by which sex hormones contribute to the regulation of cardiovascular function and blood pressure are still being investigated, there is increasing evidence that modulating the activity of locally active hormonal systems is one of the major mechanisms of sex hormone actions in target organs, including the vasculature and kidneys. Indeed, several studies have demonstrated the importance of the interaction between sex hormones and the renin-angiotensin system in regulating cardiovascular function and blood pressure. Furthermore, the differential effects of estrogens and androgens on the expression and activity of the components of the renin-angiotensin system could possibly explain the sex differences in blood pressure levels and the development and progression of cardiovascular disease and hypertension.
Christine Maric-Bilkan; Michaele B Manigrasso
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Publication Detail:
Type:  JOURNAL ARTICLE     Date:  2012-7-11
Journal Detail:
Title:  Gender medicine     Volume:  -     ISSN:  1878-7398     ISO Abbreviation:  -     Publication Date:  2012 Jul 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2012-7-16     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  101225178     Medline TA:  Gend Med     Country:  -    
Other Details:
Languages:  ENG     Pagination:  -     Citation Subset:  -    
Copyright Information:
Copyright © 2012 Elsevier HS Journals, Inc. All rights reserved.
Department of Physiology and Biophysics, University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson, Mississippi; Women's Health Research Center, University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson, Mississippi.
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