JOURNAL ARTICLE
REVIEW

New insights on signaling cascades induced by cross-talk between angiotensin II and aldosterone

Catherine A Lemarié, Pierre Paradis, Ernesto L Schiffrin
Journal of Molecular Medicine: Official Organ of the "Gesellschaft Deutscher Naturforscher und Ärzte" 2008, 86 (6): 673-8
18368382
Angiotensin II (Ang II) is considered the main final mediator of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system (RAAS). The actions of Ang II have been implicated in many cardiovascular conditions, such as hypertension, atherosclerosis, coronary heart disease, restenosis after injury, and heart failure. The Ang II type 1 receptor (AT(1)R), a G-protein-coupled receptor, mediates most of the physiological and pathophysiological actions of Ang II. This receptor is predominantly expressed in cardiovascular cells, such as vascular smooth muscle cells where it activates various signaling cascades leading to vascular remodeling and inflammation. Besides Ang II, aldosterone has emerged as an important component and mediator of the effects of the RAAS. Aldosterone-induced genomic effects mediated through binding to the mineralocorticoid receptor (MR), a member of the steroid hormone receptor superfamily, which functions as a ligand-dependent transcription factor, are characterized by a delay of minutes to hours corresponding to a long series of subcellular events that include gene activation and protein synthesis. Besides its well-known genomic actions, there is evidence of aldosterone-mediated rapid effects which lead to the activation of ion channels and other signaling pathways. Some of the effects of aldosterone occur through similar pathways as Ang II-induced signaling events. Indeed, recent studies suggest complex interactions between Ang II and aldosterone: it has become evident that aldosterone may influence the signaling or trafficking of the AT(1)R. Thus, growing evidence demonstrates the existence of cross-talk between Ang II and aldosterone which could potentially modulate Ang II signal transduction. These interactions between Ang II and aldosterone activate specific signaling pathways, sometimes in ways distinct from those that they induce on their own, one which may lead to pathogenic effects on target organs. Here we focus on recent findings and concepts that suggest the existence of novel signaling mechanisms whereby the cross-talk between Ang II and aldosterone plays a role in cardiovascular disease. We also discuss the importance of investigating Ang II/aldosterone cross-talk as a mean of developing new therapeutic strategies to combat cardiovascular disease.

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