Is Hypertension a Bone Marrow Disease?
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Is Hypertension a Bone Marrow Disease?

September 10, 2019

– Hello, I’m David Harrison
from Vanderbilt University. And today I was asked to
give a talk on the topic of is hypertension a bone marrow disease? So this is kind of a novel concept. We’ve been interested in
the role of the kidney and the vascular, the blood
vessels, and the brain in hypertension for many years. But in the last 15 years or so, it’s been shown by many laboratories that immune cells,
cells of both the innate and adaptive immune system, infiltrate our kidneys
and our blood vessels, and produce very powerful mediators that alter vascular,
kidney, and brain function, and promote damage and
dysfunction in these tissues. And this raises blood pressure. And one of the things that’s interesting, is that these cells, cells
like monocytes, macrophages, dendritic cells, T-cells and B-cells, all drive initially from the bone marrow. Some mature elsewhere, but
the bone marrow drives cells. And so the question is,
are there influences in hypertension that promote
the activation of these cells in the bone marrow? We know that the bone
marrow releases these cells constitutively, so we
always have circulating immune cells in our blood stream. So one possibility is that
the peripheral tissues are just activated to take up these cells in hypertension and related diseases. But another possibility is that things like sympathetic
outflow, excessive salt, or perhaps other cytokines or chemokines that are common to the hypertensive milieu cause the bone marrow to
release more of these cells. And today I presented
some preliminary data from (mumbles) work
and some published data to suggest that in fact,
there does appear to be a role of bone marrow
activation in the release of these cells and in their trafficking to and from peripheral tissues. And I think this is an important topic because we don’t really
know what regulates the bone marrow in a
disease like hypertension. We don’t know if this is
unique to high blood pressure. And there may be
therapeutic opportunities. It might be possible
that some of the drugs that we currently have
available, or other drugs, would modulate the
collection of these cells in the bone marrow would
modulate their egress or their release from the bone marrow. And perhaps prevent/end organ damage, and elevation of blood pressure.

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