Renin-Angiotensin System Inhibitors as Therapeutic Alternatives in the Treatment of Chronic Liver Diseases

Author(s): Hitoshi Yoshiji, Ryuichi Noguchi, Yasuhide Ikenaka, Mitsuteru Kitade, Kosuke Kaji, Tatsuhiro Tsujimoto, Masahito Uemura, Hiroshi Fukui.

Journal Name: Current Medicinal Chemistry

Volume 14 , Issue 26 , 2007

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Abstract:

The renin-angiotensin system (RAS) is frequently activated in the patients with chronic liver diseases, and recent studies have shown that RAS plays a pivotal role in the progression of chronic liver diseases, i.e., liver fibrosis and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Angiotensin-II (AT-II) reportedly stimulates contractility and proliferation of the activated hepatic stellate cells, and increases the transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β) expression through angiotensin type-I receptors (AT1-R). Many studies have demonstrated that the clinically used angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (ACE-I) and AT1-R blockers (ARB) significantly attenuated the liver fibrosis development in the experimental studies and clinical practice. AT-II also strongly promotes neovascularization, which plays a pivotal role in tumor development. AT-II induces a potent angiogenic factor; namely, the vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). It has been reported that ACE-I significantly attenuated the experimental HCC growth and hepatocarcinogenesis along with suppression of neovascularization. The VEGF expression in the tumor was suppressed by ACE-I, too. The combined treatment of ACE-I with other clinically used agents, such as interferon, imatinib mesylate, and vitamin K, shows more potent inhibitory effects on the development of liver fibrosis and HCC. Since RAS inhibitors are widely used in the clinical practice without serious side effects, they may represent a potential new therapeutic strategy against the progression of chronic liver diseases.

Keywords: Renin-angiotensin system, angiotensin-II, angiogenesis, liver fibrosis, hepatocellular carcinoma, vascular endothelial growth factor

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Article Details

VOLUME: 14
ISSUE: 26
Year: 2007
Page: [2749 - 2754]
Pages: 6
DOI: 10.2174/092986707782360169
Price: $58

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