Experimental Hypertension

Nazarbayev University School of Medicine, Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan

In the early 1900s, several authors tried to demonstrate the renal cause of hypertension.However, most of the studies were controversial (1). In 1934,  Harry Goldblatt(1891-1977), professor of experimental pathology at the Case‐Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Cleveland, established a successful experimental model of hypertension (2)From careful examination of autopsy specimens, Dr. Goldblatt noted the narrowing of the renal arteries and enlargement of the heart in patients who died from hypertension and renal failure. He suggested that a decrease in blood flow in the kidneys, and consequently reduced oxygen supply to the kidneys (ischemia), might be the cause of hypertension (3)Goldblatt performed experimental studies on dogs and demonstrated renal ischemia-induced hypertension by constricting both renal arteries with a self-styled adjustable silver clamp, which resulted in an elevation of blood pressure (2, 4). The clamping of other arteries (splenic or femoral) did not result in hypertension, which showed the specific role of kidneys in hypertension. Further, this experimental model became the basis for identifying the role of the renin-angiotensin system in the regulation of blood pressure (5, 6).


  1. Goldblatt H. Experimental Hypertension Induced by Renal Ischemia: Harvey Lecture, May 19, 1938. Bull N Y Acad Med. 1938;14(9):523-53.
  2. Goldblatt H, Lynch J, Hanzal RF, Summerville WW. Studies on Experimental Hypertension: I. The Production of Persistent Elevation of Systolic Blood Pressure by Means of Renal Ischemia. J Exp Med. 1934;59(3):347-79.
  3. Van Epps HL. Harry Goldblatt and the discovery of renin. J Exp Med. 2005;201(9):1351.
  4. Gerbi C, Rubenstein BB, Goldblatt H. Studies on Experimental Hypertension: X. The Oxygen Consumption of the Ischemic Kidney. J Exp Med. 1940;71(1):71-6.
  5. Katz YJ, Goldblatt H. Studies on Experimental Hypertension: Xxi. The Purification of Renin. J Exp Med. 1943;78(1):67-74.
  6. Goldblatt H, Katz YJ, Lewis HA, Richardson E. Studies on Experimental Hypertension: Xx. The Bioassay of Renin. J Exp Med. 1943;77(4):309-13.

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