The effects of hypertension on cerebral artery structure and function, and cerebral blood flow

Paulo W. Pires, Anne M. Dorrance

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

2 Scopus citations


Careful regulation of cerebral blood flow is required to maintain proper brain function. The cerebral arteries are particularly sensitive to the effects of hypertension, which alters the arteries in a manner that impairs the brains ability to tightly regulate perfusion. This chapter focuses the effects of hypertension on cerebral artery structure and function, with emphasis on myogenic reactivity and endotheliumdependent dilation. Hypertension causes a reduction in the lumen diameter of cerebral arteries and this is often associated with an increase in the wall-to-lumen ratio. Several circulating factors have been implicated in mediating this inward artery remodeling; these include aldosterone, angiotensin II, proinflammatory cytokines, and reactive oxygen species. Endothelium-dependent dilation in response to nitric oxide and epoxyeicosatrienoic acids is impaired in hypertension; this leads to increases in myogenic tone and impaired dilation. Dysfunction of ion channels, including calcium-activated potassium channels and transient receptor potential (TRP) V4 channels, has also been associated with impaired endothelial function in hypertensive models. Understanding the mechanisms responsible for the hypertension- associated vascular dysfunction is important because hypertension is associated with an increased risk of dementia and stroke and with increased ischemic injury in the event of a stroke.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationHypertension and the Brain as an End-Organ Target
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
Number of pages36
ISBN (Electronic)9783319256160
ISBN (Print)9783319256146
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Arterial remodeling
  • Autoregulation
  • Cerebral artery
  • Cerebral blood flow
  • Hypertension
  • Neuromuscular coupling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine
  • General Neuroscience


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