Angiotensin-2 antagonists

Synonyms in a broader sense

Angiotensin receptor blocker, Sartane English: antagonists of angiotensin 2


Angiotensin is a hormone that causes vasoconstriction and causes a rise in blood pressure. It is part of the finely tuned system for regulating blood pressure, the renin-angiotensin system. The angiotensin-2 antagonists have an opposite effect to angiotensin: the active ingredients of this group of drugs displace the angiotensin at its site of action, so that the hormone cannot develop its effect in the form of vasoconstriction; consequently, the vessels dilate.

The drugs also lead to a reduced release of aldosterone, a hormone that increases blood pressure. The lower amount of aldosterone lowers blood pressure. The angiotensin-2 antagonists are used in the treatment of high blood pressure.

The Renin-Angiotensin-Aldosterone System

The renin-angiotensin system, abbreviated RAAS, serves to regulate blood pressure by producing certain hormones. If the blood pressure drops or the blood volume decreases, the system reacts by releasing renin into the blood. Renin is a protein that activates the hormone angiotensinogen.

The activated angiotensinogen is then called angiotensin 1. A protein called ACE (angiotensin-converting enzymes) acts on this hormone, resulting in the hormone angiotensin 2. Angiotensin 2 causes a general activation of the stress-mediating nervous system, which in turn leads to vasoconstriction and an increase in blood pressure.

The hormone also causes a constriction directly at the vessels, independently of the nervous system, which also leads to an increase in blood pressure. More aldosterone is also released into the bloodstream. Because of the aldosterone, the body retains more sodium and therefore more water, and the blood volume and blood pressure rise.

How do the angiotensin-2 antagonists work?

The angiotensin 2 receptor antagonists intervene in this finely tuned system of blood pressure control by suppressing the effect of the angiotensin 2 produced. Thus the influence of the stress-mediating nervous system decreases, the vessels dilate and blood pressure falls. The lower amount of aldosterone supports the effect of blood pressure reduction.

When are angiotensin-2 antagonists prescribed?

The angiotensin-2 antagonists are recommended in the presence of high blood pressure (hypertension) and in cases of limited heart function (heart failure). This group of drugs is often used in hypertensive patients with kidney disease and diabetics with kidney damage, because angiotensin-2 antagonists prevent the rapid progression of kidney disease and reduce the excretion of proteins. If the typical ACE inhibitor side effect of dry coughing occurs during therapy with ACE inhibitors, another group of antihypertensive drugs, preparations from the angiotensin-2 antagonist group can be prescribed as an alternative. The angiotensin-2 antagonists lead to dry coughs much less frequently.

The group of angiotensin-2 antagonists

The angiotensin-2 antagonists are also called Sartane because all drug names end in “-sartane”. The column “Name of the preparation” contains the names of the pharmaceutical companies for their drugs with a special active ingredient from the group of angiotensin-2 antagonists. – Candesartan, e.g.

Atacand®, Blopress®

  • Eprosartan, e.g. Emestar Mono®, Teveten Mono®
  • Irbesartan, e.g. Aprovel®, Karvea®
  • Losartan, for example Lorzaar®
  • Olmesartan, e.g. Olmetec®, Votum®
  • Telmisartan, Kinzal mono®, Micardis®. – Valsartan, Cordinate®, Diovan®, Provas®