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The kinin-kallikrein system makes bradykinin by proteolytic cleavage of its kininogen precursor, high-molecular-weight kininogen (HMWK), by the enzyme kallikrein. ACE inhibitors prevent ACE (angiotensin-converting enzyme) from degrading bradykinin, which accumulates in the lungs and acts as an irritant and provokes coughing.
In humans, bradykinin is broken down by three kininases: angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE), aminopeptidase P (APP), and carboxypeptidase N (CPN), which cleave the 7-8, 1-2, and 8-9 positions, respectively .
Bradykinin is a potent endothelium-dependent vasodilator, causes contraction of non-vascular smooth muscle, increases vascular permeability and also is involved in the mechanism of pain. In some aspects, it has similar actions to that of histamine, and like histamine is released from venules rather than arterioles.
Bradykinin is also thought to be the cause of the dry cough in some patients on angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor drugs. This refractory cough is a common cause for stopping ACE-inhibitor therapy.
The kinin B1 and B2 receptors belong to G protein coupled receptor (GPCR) family.
Bradykinin was discovered in 1948 by three Brazilian physiologists and pharmacologists working at the Instituto Biológico, in São Paulo, Brazil, led by Dr. Maurício Rocha e Silva. Together with colleagues Wilson Teixeira Beraldo and Gastão Rosenfeld, they discovered the powerful hypotensive effects of bradykinin in animal preparations. Bradykinin was detected in the blood plasma of animals after the addition of venom extracted from the Bothrops jararaca (Brazilian lancehead snake), brought by Rosenfeld from the Butantan Institute. The discovery was part of a continuing study on circulatory shock and proteolytic enzymes related to the toxicology of snake bites, started by Rocha e Silva as early as 1939. Bradykinin was to prove a new autopharmacological principle, i.e., a substance that is released in the body by a metabolic modification from precursors, which are pharmacologically active. According to B.J. Hagwood, Rocha e Silva's biographer, "The discovery of bradykinin has led to a new understanding of many physiological and pathological phenomena including circulatory shock induced by venoms and toxins."
The practical importance of the discovery of bradykinin became apparent when one of his collaborators at the Medical School of Ribeirão Preto at the University of São Paulo, Dr. Sérgio Henrique Ferreira, discovered a bradykinin potentiating factor (BPF) in the bothropic venom which increases powerfully both the duration and magnitude of its effects on vasodilation and the consequent fall in blood pressure. On the basis of this finding, Squibb scientists developed the first of a new generation of highly-effective anti-hypertensive drugs, the so-called ACE inhibitors, such as captopril (trademarked Capoten).
|This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Bradykinin". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.|