The actions of adrenomedullin (ADM), a 52-amino acid peptide, are not well defined in man. We, therefore, studied eight normal volunteers aged 1832 yr in a placebo-controlled crossover study. On the 2 study days, subjects received, in random order, ADM in "low" and "high" dose (2.9 pmol/kg x min and 5.8 pmol/kg x min for 2 h each) or vehicle (hemaccel) infusion on day 4 of a metabolic diet (Na+ 80 mmol/day, K+ 100 mmol/day). Achieved plasma ADM levels were in the pathophysiological range, and plasma cAMP values rose 5 pmol/L during the higher dose. Compared with time-matched vehicle infusion, high-dose ADM increased peak heart rate by 10 beats per minute (P < 0.05) and lowered diastolic (by 5 mm Hg, P < 0.01) blood pressure. Cardiac output increased in both phases of ADM (low dose, 7.6 L/min; high dose, 10.2 L/min; vehicle, 6 L/min; P < 0.05 for both). Despite a 2-fold rise in PRA during high-dose ADM (P < 0.01), aldosterone levels were unaltered. Norepinephrine levels increased by 50% during high-dose ADM (P < 0.001), but epinephrine levels were unchanged. Plasma PRL levels increased during high-dose ADM (P = 0.014). ADM had no significant effect on urine volume and sodium excretion. Infusion of ADM to achieve pathophysiological plasma levels produced significant hemodynamic effects, stimulated renin but inhibited the aldosterone response to endogenous angiotensin II, and activated the sympathetic system and PRL without altering urine sodium excretion in normal subjects.