Role of the paraventricular nucleus in renal excretory responses to acute volume expansion: Role of nitric oxide

Yi Fan Li, William G. Mayhan, Kaushik P. Patel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


Acute volume expansion (VE) produces a suppression of renal sympathetic nerve discharge (RSND) resulting in diuresis and natriuresis. Recently, we have demonstrated that the endogenous nitric oxide (NO) system within the paraventricular nucleus (PVN) produces a decrease in RSND. We hypothesized that endogenous NO in the PVN is involved in the suppression of RSND leading to diuretic and natriuretic responses to acute VE. To test this hypothesis, we first measured the VE-induced increase in renal sodium excretion and urine flow with and without blockade of NO, with microinjection of N G-monomethyl-L-arginine (L-NMMA; 200 pmol in 200 nl), within the PVN of Inactin-anesthetized male Sprague-Dawley rats. Acute VE produced significant increases in urine flow and sodium excretion, which were diminished in rats treated with L-NMMA within the PVN. This effect of NO blockade within the PVN on VE-induced diuresis and natriuresis was abolished by renal denervation. Consistent with these data, acute VE induced a decrease in RSND (52% of the baseline level), which was significantly blunted by prior administration of L-NMMA into the PVN (28% of the baseline level) induced by a comparable level of acute VE. Using the push-pull perfusion technique, we found that acute VE induced a significant increase in NOx concentration in the perfusate from the PVN region. Taken together, these results suggest that acute VE induces an increase in NO production within the PVN that leads to renal sympathoinhibition, resulting in diuresis and natriuresis. We conclude that NO within the PVN plays an important role in regulation of sodium and water excretions in the volume reflex via modulating renal sympathetic outflow.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)H1738-H1746
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Heart and Circulatory Physiology
Issue number4 54-4
StatePublished - Oct 1 2003


  • Renal sympathetic nerves
  • Sodium retention

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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