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Biomarkers of inflammation and endothelial dysfunction and risk of hypertension among Inner Mongolians in China

Zhang, Yonghonga; Thompson, Angela Mb; Tong, Weijuna; Xu, Tana; Chen, Jingb,c; Zhao, Lid; Kelly, Tanika Nb; Chen, Chung-Shiuanb; He, Jiangb,c

doi: 10.1097/HJH.0b013e3283324650
Original papers: Epidemiology

Objective We examined the association between plasma concentrations of high-sensitivity C-reactive protein, soluble intercellular adhesion molecule 1, soluble E-selectin, angiotensin II, renin activity and the risk of hypertension among 2589 study participants aged 20 years and older from Inner Mongolia, China.

Methods Three blood pressure measurements were obtained using a standard mercury sphygmomanometer and hypertension was defined as blood pressure of at least 140/90 mmHg or use of antihypertensive medications. Overnight fasting blood samples were obtained to measure the biomarkers of endothelial dysfunction and inflammation.

Results The average levels of high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (7.5 vs. 5.4 mg/l), soluble intercellular adhesion molecule 1 (339.4 vs. 322.6 ng/ml), soluble E-selectin (19.1 vs. 18.2 ng/ml), and angiotensin II (52.0 vs. 47.0 pg/ml) were significantly higher, whereas renin activity (1.3 vs. 1.5 mg/ml.h) was lower in hypertensive compared to normotensive participants (all P value <0.001). Compared to the lowest quartile, the multivariable-adjusted odds ratios (95% confidence interval) of hypertension for the highest quartile were 1.41 (1.06, 1.86) for high-sensitivity C-reactive protein, 1.93 (1.48, 2.53) for angiotensin II, and 0.70 (0.54, 0.91) for renin activity.

Conclusion Our study indicated that elevated plasma levels of high-sensitivity C-reactive protein and angiotensin II were positively and renin activity inversely associated with the risk of hypertension. These data suggest that inflammation and endothelial dysfunction may play a role in the cause of hypertension.

aDepartment of Epidemiology, Soochow University School of Radiation Medicine and Public Health, Suzhou, China

bDepartment of Epidemiology, Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, USA

cDepartment of Medicine, Tulane University School of Medicine, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA

dTongliao Center for Disease Prevention and Control, Tongliao, Inner Mongolia, China

Received 12 April, 2009

Revised 8 July, 2009

Accepted 24 August, 2009

Correspondence to Jiang He, MD, PhD, Department of Epidemiology, Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, 1430 Tulane Ave, SL18, New Orleans, LA 70112, USA E-mail:

© 2010 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.