Abstract. The effects of aging on plasma renin in normotensive volunteers were evaluated by conventional indirect RIA of angiotensin I and a newly developed direct RIA. Plasma renin activity and the plasma concentration of active renin measured by radiometric assay with monoclonal antibody were significantly lower in 14 subjects over 60 years than in 15 subjects under 60 years (plasma renin activity: 0.5 ± 0.1 vs 1.7 ± 0.4 nmol · 1−1 · h−1, P< 0.01; plasma active renin: 0.50 ± 0.05 vs 0.87 ± 0.13 pmol/l, P< 0.01, means ± sem), wheres neither the total renin activity nor the total plasma renin concentration measured by the newly developed immunometric assay were different in the two groups. In another study, the plasma renin concentration, total renin concentration and immunoreactive total renin concentration measured by direct RIA with polyclonal antibody were determined in 17 young (<60 years) and 12 elderly (≧60 years) subjects. Plasma renin concentration was significantly lower in the elderly subjects (1.7 ± 0.2 nmol · 1−1 · h−1) than in young subjects (3.4 ± 0.7 nmol · 1−1 · h−1, P< 0.05), but the total renin concentration and immunoreactive total renin concentrations in the two groups were not significantly different. These results indicate that the total renin content of the plasma does not change, whereas the active renin content decreases with age in normal subjects, and suggest that activation of prorenin to active renin may be impaired in elderly subjects.
Jitsuo Higaki, Ryuichi Morishita, Toshio Ogihara and Masaru Nishiura
Mitsuaki Nakamaru, Toshio Ogihara, Jitsuo Higaki, Kazuko Masuo, Hiroshi Ikegami, Kenji Shima and Yuichi Kumahara
Abstract. Plasma levels of active and trypsin-activatable inactive renin and catecholamines were measured in 6 diabetic patients with neuropathy (group 1), 8 diabetic patients without neuropathy (group 2) and 8 agematched normal subjects. The effect of insulin administration on plasma active and inactive renin and plasma catecholamine levels in diabetic patients was also investigated. The levels of inactive renin were calculated as the difference between the levels of total renin after trypsin activation and those of active renin. The levels of plasma catecholamines were determined by the trihydroxyindole method. The levels of active renin were significantly lower and inactive renin was increased slightly in group 1 when compared with controls. Group 1 showed a significant reduction in plasma norepinephrine levels. Group 2 showed slightly reduced active renin, normal inactive renin and normal norepinephrine values. There was no significant difference in the levels of epinephrine between the 3 groups. After insulin injection, active renin levels were increased in groups 1 and 2. The mean increment in active renin levels was less in group 1 than in group 2. Inactive renin levels were slightly decreased in both groups. Significant increases in epinephrine and norepinephrine levels were observed following insulin administraion. The mean increment in norepinephrine levels was less in group 1 than in group 2. There was a positive correlation between the mean increment in active renin and in norepinephrine levels in diabetic patients. These results suggest that the impaired conversion of inactive renin into an active form is responsible in part for the low levels of active renin in diabetics with neuropathy.