Urinary Kallikrein Excretion in Normal Man
Relationships to Sodium Intake and Sodium-Retaining Steroids
The urinary excretion of kallikrein, a renal enzyme that cleaves the potent vasodilator kinin, kallidin, from kininogen, was measured in normal volunteers by three different assays, one of which was a bioassay. When sodium intake was changed from ad libitum or 109 mEq/day to 9 mEq/day, daily kallikrein excretion increased progressively in every subject to a mean maximal value that was 271% of control by day 7; an increase in sodium intake to 259 mEq/day resulted in the return of kallikrein excretion to control values. Urinary excretion of amylase, a protein with a molecular weight similar to that of kallikrein, did not change when sodium intake was changed, but plasma renin activity and aldosterone excretion changed appropriately. In subjects on a constant-sodium (109 mEq/day), constant-potassium (100 mEq/day) diet, fludrocortisone, 0.5 mg/day for 10 days, increased kallikrein excretion to a mean maximal value that was 203% of control. In subjects on a diet containing 9 mEq sodium/day, elevated kallikrein excretion decreased during treatment with spironolactone, 400 mg/day. Rapid administration of water (1 or 2 liters in 30 minutes, orally) or rapid infusion of 2.4 liters of normal saline did not significantly alter urinary kallikrein excretion despite large changes in urine volume or sodium excretion. Thus, kallikrein excretion appears to be directly related to the effective level of circulating sodium-retaining steroid. The findings are consistent with a role for the kallikrein-kinin system in the renal response to sodium-retaining hormones.
- Accepted August 11, 1974.
- © 1974 American Heart Association, Inc.