Sex differences in the role of the angiotensin type 2 receptor in the regulation of blood pressure

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It is well established that there are pronounced sex differences in the physiological regulation of arterial pressure and vascular function. Longitudinal studies have demonstrated that in premenopausal women, arterial pressure is lower than age-matched males. In part, sex differences in the regulation of arterial pressure may be underpinned by an enhanced role for the angiotensin type 2 (AT2) receptor in females compared with males. Thus the protective actions of the AT2 receptor likely confer benefits in terms of protection from hypertension and cardiovascular disease in women of reproductive age. Moreover, the AT2 receptor may contribute to the normal cardiovascular adaptations that occur during pregnancy, which enable blood volume to increase without a concomitant increase in blood pressure. Conversely, evidence now suggests that defects in AT2 receptor expression may contribute to the pathophysiology of pregnancy-induced hypertension and postmenopausal hypertension.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSex Differences in Cardiovascular Physiology and Pathophysiology
EditorsBabbette LaMarca, Barbara R. Alexander
Place of PublicationLondon, UK
Number of pages31
ISBN (Electronic)9780128131978
ISBN (Print)9780128131985
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Kidney
  • Pregnancy
  • Renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system
  • Vasculature

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