Toxic gas new frontier for regulating hypertension

Widely considered simply a malodourous toxic gas, hydrogen sulfide may help treat high blood pressure, a new study suggests.

“We had to start with what happens in healthy subjects before we can turn our attention to what happens with disease,” said Lacy Alexander, associate professor of kinesiology at the Pennsylvania State University.

The findings suggest that in the skin circulation, hydrogen sulfide widens blood vessels in healthy, young adults.

When blood vessels widen, the flow of blood can increase without significant increases in vascular resistance.

Thus vascular resistance is effectively increased due to dilation, which could lead to decreased blood pressure if used in a systemic intervention, the researchers noted.

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