Update on tissue renin-angiotensin systems

J Mol Med (Berl). 2008 Jun;86(6):615-21. doi: 10.1007/s00109-008-0336-0. Epub 2008 Apr 15.


Angiotensin (Ang) II is not only generated in the circulation by renin and angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) but also is produced locally in numerous organs including kidney, vessels, heart, adrenal gland, eye, testis, and brain. Furthermore, widely distributed mast cells have been shown to be a production site. Local Ang II production process is commonly termed the result of a "tissue" renin-angiotensin system (RAS). Because pharmacological experiments do not easily allow targeting of specific tissues, many novel findings about the functional importance of tissue RAS have been collected from transgenic rodent models. These animals either overexpress or lack RAS components in specific tissues and thereby elucidate their local functions. The data to date show that in most tissues local RAS amplify the actions of circulating Ang II with important implications for physiology and pathophysiology of cardiovascular diseases. This review summarizes the recent findings on the importance of tissue RAS in the most relevant cardiovascular organs.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Humans
  • Organ Specificity
  • Renin-Angiotensin System / physiology*