Objective: Hypertension is associated with a number of adverse morphologic and functional changes in the cardiovascular system, including left ventricular (LV) hypertrophy. Studies have demonstrated that bradykinin, through the B2 bradykinin receptor (B2BKR), mediates important cardiovascular effects that may protect against LV hypertrophy. Recently, a +9/-9 exon 1 polymorphism of the B2BKR was shown to be strongly associated with LV growth response among normotensive males undergoing physical training. We aimed to clarify whether the processes found in exercise-induced LV growth in normotensive people also occur in pathological LV hypertrophy.
Design and methods: We determined the B2BKR genotype of 90 patients with essential hypertension and echocardiographically diagnosed LV hypertrophy, included in a double-blind study to receive treatment for 48 weeks with either the angiotensin II type 1 (AT1) receptor antagonist irbesartan or the beta1-adrenoceptor antagonist atenolol.
Results: B2BKR +9/+9 genotypes responded poorly in LV mass regression, independent of blood pressure reduction or treatment, as compared to the other genotypes (adjusted mean change in LV mass index = -10.0 +/- 4.6 versus -21.6 +/- 2.2 g/m2, P = 0.03).
Conclusions: Our results suggest an impact of the B2BKR polymorphism on LV mass regression during antihypertensive treatment.