Objectives: Butyrate, a short-chain fatty acid, is the end product of the fermentation of complex carbohydrates by the gut microbiota. Recently, sodium butyrate (NaBu) has been found to play a protective role in a number of chronic diseases. However, it is still unclear whether NaBu has a therapeutic potential in hypertension. The present study was aimed to investigate the role of NaBu in angiotensin II (Ang II)-induced hypertension and to further explore the underlying mechanism.
Methods: Ang II was infused into uninephrectomized Sprague-Dawley rats with or without intramedullary infusion of NaBu for 14 days. Mean arterial blood pressure was recorded by the telemetry system. Renal tissues, serum samples, and 24-h urine samples were collected to examine renal injury and the regulation of the (pro)renin receptor (PRR) and renin.
Results: Intramedullary infusion of NaBu in Sprague-Dawley rats lowered the Ang II-induced mean arterial pressure from 129 ± 6 mmHg to 108 ± 4 mmHg (P < 0.01). This corresponded with an improvement in Ang II-induced renal injury, including urinary albumin, glomerulosclerosis, and renal fibrosis, as well as the expression of inflammatory mediators tumor necrosis factor α, interleukin 6. The renal expression of PRR, angiotensinogen, angiotensin I-converting enzyme and the urinary excretion of soluble PRR, renin, and angiotensinogen were all increased by Ang II infusion but decreased by NaBu treatment. In cultured innermedullary collecting duct cells, NaBu treatment attenuated Ang II-induced expression of PRR and renin.
Conclusion: These results demonstrate that NaBu exerts an antihypertensive action, likely by suppressing the PRR-mediated intrarenal renin-angiotensin system.