1. Electrical stimulation of the brachial nerves at 3 Hz (15 V, 0.2 ms), in sodium pentobarbitone‐anaesthetized rats whose renal arterial pressure was held constant, elicited a 26% increase in systemic blood pressure, a 15% rise in heart rate, an 11% reduction in renal blood flow, did not alter glomerular filtration rate and significantly reduced absolute and fractional sodium excretions and urine flow by 44, 49 and 31%, respectively. 2. In a separate group of rats, brachial nerve stimulation at 3 Hz increased plasma renin activity approximately 2‐fold, while in animals in which the brachial nerves were not stimulated plasma renin activity did not change. 3. Following inhibition of the renin‐angiotensin system with captopril or sar‐1‐ile‐8‐angiotensin II, brachial nerve stimulation resulted in similar increases in systemic blood pressure and heart rate as in the animals with an intact renin‐angiotensin system but, in captopril‐infused rats, did not change renal haemodynamics or urine flow while absolute and fractional sodium excretions were reduced by 20 and 25%, respectively. In sar‐1‐ile‐8‐angiotensin II‐infused animals, similar nerve stimulation decreased renal blood flow by 12%, glomerular filtration rate by 7% and absolute and fractional sodium excretions and urine flow by 25, 18 and 18%, respectively. These decreases in sodium and water output were significantly smaller than those observed in animals with an intact renin‐angiotensin system. 4. Stimulation of the brachial nerves increased post‐ganglionic efferent renal nerve activity by 20% and the magnitude of this response was unaffected following inhibition of the renin‐angiotensin system. 5. The results show that low rates of brachial nerve stimulation in the rat can increase efferent renal nerve activity and result in an antinatriuresis and antidiuresis which is dependent on the presence of angiotensin II, and appears to be due to an action of angiotensin II at the level of the kidney.
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