Blood pressure lowering effects of rimonabant in obesity-related hypertension

J Neuroendocrinol. 2008 May;20 Suppl 1:63-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2826.2008.01688.x.


Obesity-related hypertension represents a common clinical condition characterised by complex pathophysiological and therapeutic features. From a pathophysiological view point, results of experimental and animal studies have led to the hypothesis that neurogenic mechanisms participate in the development and progression of the disease. The hypothesis is based on the evidence that metabolic (i.e. insulin-resistance) and neural (sympathetic activation) alterations frequently co-exist in the obese hypertensive patient and that they reciprocally potentiate each other. From a therapeutic view point, the 2007 European Society of Hypertension/European Society of Cardiology emphasised the importance in this clinical condition of treatment not only through antihypertensive drugs but also via lifestyle changes and drug-induced interventions that reduce body weight. The four Rimonabant In Obesity (RIO) studies have shown that rimonabant can decrease body weight. A recent meta-analysis, based on the RIO results, showed that rimonabant, particularly in obese hypertensive patients, can also decrease - although modestly (2.8 mmHg for systolic and 2.2 mmHg for diastolic) - blood pressure. These effects, which appear to be triggered by the weight reduction induced by the drug, are clinically relevant because they contribute favourably to lower the elevated cardiovascular risk profile of the obese hypertensive patient.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antihypertensive Agents / pharmacology
  • Antihypertensive Agents / therapeutic use
  • Blood Pressure / drug effects*
  • Cannabinoids / pharmacology
  • Cannabinoids / therapeutic use
  • Down-Regulation / drug effects
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / drug therapy*
  • Hypertension / etiology*
  • Obesity / complications*
  • Obesity / drug therapy
  • Piperidines / pharmacology
  • Piperidines / therapeutic use*
  • Pyrazoles / pharmacology
  • Pyrazoles / therapeutic use*
  • Rimonabant
  • Sympathetic Nervous System / physiology


  • Antihypertensive Agents
  • Cannabinoids
  • Piperidines
  • Pyrazoles
  • Rimonabant