Weight loss and the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system


  • S. Engeli
  • J. Boehnke
  • K. Gorzelniak
  • J. Janke
  • P. Schling
  • M. Bader
  • F.C. Luft
  • A.M. Sharma


  • Hypertension


  • Hypertension 45: 356-362


  • The renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system has been causally implicated in obesity-associated hypertension. We studied the influence of obesity and weight reduction on the circulating and adipose tissue renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system in menopausal women. Blood samples were analyzed for angiotensinogen, renin, aldosterone, angiotensin-converting enzyme activity, and angiotensin II. In adipose tissue biopsy samples, we analyzed angiotensinogen, renin, renin-receptor, angiotensin-converting enzyme, and angiotensin II type-1 receptor gene expression. Obese women (n=19) had higher circulating angiotensinogen, renin, aldosterone, and angiotensin-converting enzyme than lean women (n=19), and lower angiotensinogen gene expression in adipose tissue. Seventeen women successfully participated in a weight reduction protocol over 13 weeks to reduce daily caloric intake by 600 kcal. Body weight was reduced by -5%, as were angiotensinogen levels by -27%, renin by -43%, aldosterone by -31%, angiotensin-converting enzyme activity by -12%, and angiotensinogen expression by -20% in adipose tissue (all P<0.05). The plasma angiotensinogen decrease was highly correlated with the waist circumference decline (r=0.74; P<0.001). Weight and renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system reductions were accompanied by a -7-mm Hg reduced systolic ambulatory blood pressure. These data suggest that a 5% reduction in body weight can lead to a meaningfully reduced renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system in plasma and adipose tissue, which may contribute to the reduced blood pressure.