Transcriptional networks in rodent models support a role for gut-brain communication in neurogenic hypertension: a review of the evidence Review Article (Web of Science)


  • Hypertension (HTN) is the most prevalent condition observed in primary health care. Hypertension shows complex etiology, and neuroinflammation, overactive sympathetic drive, and the microbiome are each associated with the disease. To obtain mechanistic perspective into neurogenic HTN, we first constructed a framework for transcriptional regulators of the disease using the Comparative Toxicogenomics Database. This approach yielded a core group of 178 transcripts that are prevalent in studies of HTN, including leptin and neuropeptide Y. We then conducted a meta-analysis for transcriptome data generated in brain tissue from HTN studies. Eight expression studies were reanalyzed, in which transcriptomics was conducted in hypertensive animal models [spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR) and high blood pressure (BPH/2J) Schlager mice] (140 microarrays). Most strikingly, a gut-brain connection was a dominant theme in both rodent models of HTN. The transcriptomic data in the rat CNS converged on processes that included gastrointestinal motility and appetite, among others. In the mouse model, pathways converged on gastrointestinal transit. Thus, our data provide a powerful review of current molecular evidence of the interplay between gut and brain in HTN. Analyses of meta-genome data also suggested that transcriptome networks related to natriuresis, thermoregulation, reproduction (lactation and pregnancy), and vasoconstriction were associated to HTN, supporting physiological observations in independent studies by others. Lastly, we present novel transcriptome networks that may contribute to a neurogenic origin of HTN. Using this framework, new therapeutic targets can be proposed and investigated in treatment strategies.


publication date

  • 2017

published in

number of pages

  • 11

start page

  • 327

end page

  • 338


  • 49


  • 7