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Mast Cell Renin and a Local Renin-Angiotensin System in the Airway: Role in Bronchoconstriction

Arul Veerappan, Alicia C. Reid, Racha Estephan, Nathan O'Connor, Maria Thadani-Mulero, Mariselis Salazar-Rodriguez, Roberto Levi and Randi B. Silver
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Vol. 105, No. 4 (Jan. 29, 2008), pp. 1315-1320
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/25451272
Page Count: 6
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Mast Cell Renin and a Local Renin-Angiotensin System in the Airway: Role in Bronchoconstriction
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Abstract

We previously reported that mast cells express renin, the rate-limiting enzyme in the renin-angiotensin cascade. We have now assessed whether mast cell renin release triggers angiotensin formation in the airway. In isolated rat bronchial rings, mast cell degranulation released enzyme with angiotensin I-forming activity blocked by the selective renin inhibitor BILA2157. Local generation of angiotensin (ANG II) from mast cell renin elicited bronchial smooth muscle contraction mediated by ANG II type 1 receptors (AT₁R). In a guinea pig model of immediate type hypersensitivity, anaphylactic mast cell degranulation in bronchial rings resulted in ANG II-mediated constriction. As in rat bronchial rings, broncho-constriction (BC) was inhibited by a renin inhibitor, an AT₁R blocker, and a mast cell stabilizer. Anaphylactic release of renin, histamine, and β-hexosaminidase from mast cells was confirmed in the effluent from isolated, perfused guinea pig lung. To relate the significance of this finding to humans, mast cells were isolated from macroscopically normal human lung waste tissue specimens. Sequence analysis of human lung mast cell RNA showed 100% homology between human lung mast cell renin and kidney renin between exons 1 and 10. Furthermore, the renin protein expressed in lung mast cells was enzymatically active. Our results demonstrate the existence of an airway renin-angiotensin system triggered by release of mast-cell renin. The data show that locally produced ANG II is a critical factor governing BC, opening the possibility for novel therapeutic targets in the management of airway disease.

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