Substantial reductions in blood pressure after bilateral nephrectomy in fetal sheep

D. F. Anderson, A. Barbera, J. J. Faber

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


The role of the kidneys in the maintenance of arterial blood pressure was examined in fetal sheep. Surgery was performed on 11 pregnant sheep (8 twin pregnancies) at ~125 days. All 19 fetuses were instrumented with hindlimb arterial and venous catheters. Eleven of the fetuses (but only 1 of each twin) were also bilaterally nephrectomized. Fetal arterial blood pressure was measured several times between 2 and 14 days after surgery. Arterial blood pressure in the intact fetuses increased from 44 ± 1 to 47 ± 1 mmHg (SE) but gradually decreased from 37 ± 4 to 25 ± 3 mmHg in the nephrectomized group. Whereas the arterial blood pressures measured on the first day of the experiment were not statistically significantly different between the two groups, by the final day of the experiment the arterial blood pressure of the intact fetuses was much higher than that of the nephrectomized fetuses. Venous blood pressure was similar in the two groups. We conclude that bilateral nephrectomy in fetal sheep not only stops the normal gestational increase in arterial blood pressure but also leads to a progressive decline.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)H17-H20
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Heart and Circulatory Physiology
Issue number1 35-1
StatePublished - 1994
Externally publishedYes


  • arterial blood pressure
  • blood volume
  • catecholamines
  • fetal hypotension
  • nephrectomy
  • renin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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