Developmental aspects of the renal response to hypoxemia in the lamb fetus.
The effects of fetal hypoxemia on renal hemodynamics and renal function were studied in two groups of chronically catheterized young (< 120 days of gestation) and near-term lamb fetuses (> 130 days). Fetal hypoxemia produced, in both groups, a significantly decrease in renal blood flow (RBF) and a significant increase in the filtration fraction. However, the glomerular filtration rate (GFR) did not change significantly suggesting that the renal vasoconstriction associated with fetal hypoxemia was more important at the efferent than at the afferent arteriolar level. In the group of near-term fetuses, the decrease in RBF correlated closely with changes in plasma renin activity (PRA) (r = 0.77). No changes in PRA were observed during hypoxemia in the group of young fetuses. After hypoxemia, reactive hyperemia associated with a significant increase in urinary prostaglandin excretion (PGE and PGF2 alpha) was observed in near-term fetuses but not in young fetuses. It also was demonstrated that fetal hypoxemia produced a significant increase in fetal plasma concentrations of vasopressin associated with an antidiuresis in all but one near-term fetus and in 50% of the young fetuses, suggesting that the ability of the fetal kidney to reabsorb free water is more developed in near-term fetuses. Finally, fetal hypoxemia had no effect on mean arterial pressure and heart rate in young fetuses; however, in near-term fetuses, a significant increase in blood pressure and a decrease in heart rate were observed. In summary, it appears that the response of the fetal kidney to hypoxemia depends on the degree of fetal maturation.
- Copyright © 1981 by American Heart Association