1. Plasma renin reactivity (PRR) is the rate of angiotensin I production after addition of renin to plasma, minus endogenous renin activity. PRR is increased in plasma of patients with renal failure compared with that of normal subjects. The present study was carried out to determine if increased PRR in uraemic plasma is related to differences of endogenous active or inactive renin, endogenous renin substrate, or pH of the incubation in vitro. 2. PRR in plasma of ten uraemic patients was greater ( P <0.02) than that in plasma of ten normal subjects in incubations carried out at pH 7.4 and 5.7. 3. Increased PRR was not accounted for by differences of endogenous active and inactive renin activity. 4. After addition of renin, renin concentration (measured by direct radioimmunoassay) did not differ in normal and uraemic plasma. 5. Renin substrate concentration, measured both indirectly and by direct radioimmunoassay, also did not differ in normal and uraemic plasma. 6. Increased PRR in uraemic plasma is not related to alterations of renin or renin substrate concentrations. These observations are consistent with our earlier hypothesis that there is a deficiency of a renin inhibitor in uraemic plasma.
1. Physicochemical properties of renin secreted by isolated perfused rat kidney were examined and the results compared with those obtained for the renin in renal extract. 2. In renal extract, two high-molecular-weight reruns (molecular weight 65 000 and 55 000) and one low-molecular-weight renin (molecular weight 39 000) were found. Their relative proportion varied depending on extraction conditions. By acidification, high-molecular-weight renins were converted into low-molecular-weight renin without marked changes in activity. 3. In renal perfusate only low-molecular-weight renin was found after renin stimulation by isoprenaline or anoxia. Inactive renin was not found. 4. Renin in renal extract and perfusate samples were both found to consist of at least four isoenzymes having different isoelectric points (pI). The pI patterns were identical in renal extract and perfusate samples: pI 5.7 (60-70%), 5.5 (15-25%), 5.3 (5-10%) and 5.0-5.2 (2-5%). 5. These results indicate that the native renin secreted by rat kidney consists entirely of the low-molecular-weight and active form comprising multiple isoenzymes with a stable pI pattern.