Elevated serum uric acid (SUA) levels are associated with development of hypertension and vascular and renal target organ damage, according to a new long-term study.

Investigators studied 961 parents and 570 children who were initially healthy at the time of recruitment into the STANISLAS cohort, a single-center familial longitudinal cohort that began recruiting patients in 1993 to 1995. The primary objective of the cohort was to investigate gene-gene and gene-environment interactions as they relate to cardiovascular diseases. A team led by Patrick Rossingnol, MD, of Université de Lorraine, INSERM CIC-P, CHRU de Nancy, Nancy France, analyzed the impact of SUA on hypertension risk and target organ damage using values obtained at visit (V) 1 (baseline), V2 and V3 (conducted approximately 5 and 10 years later, respectively), and V4 (conducted from 2011 to 2016).

Among the parents, each 0.79 mg/dL (70 µmol/L) increment in SUA level at V1 and V4 was significantly associated with 32% and 33% greater odds of hypertension, respectively, after adjusting for age, gender, smoking status, and other possible confounding variable, Dr Rossingnol and his colleagues reported in the American Journal of Hypertension. Each increase of 0.57 mg/dL in SUA between V1 and V4 was significantly associated with 25% greater odds of hypertension.

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An analysis of the whole study population (parents and children) found that each 0.79 mg/dL increment in SUA was significantly associated with 28% increased odds of hypertension at V1, but was not significantly associated with hypertension at V4. Each 0.57 mg/dL (50 µmol/L) increment in SUA between V1 and V4 was significantly associated with 25% increased odds of hypertension.

Higher baseline SUA was marginally associated with an increased risk of having high carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity.

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The study found an association between SUA with blood pressure (BP) that was dependent on body mass index, with the increase in BP being greater in leaner participants. The association between SUA and decline in estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) was age dependent, with older individuals experiencing greater eGFR declines.

Dr Rossingnol’s team found no significant association between SUA and diastolic dysfunction or left ventricular hypertrophy.


Kanbay M, Girerd N, Machu JL, et al. Impact of uric acid on hypertension occurrence and target organ damage: Insights from the STANISLAS cohort with a 20-year follow-up [published online April 8, 2020]. Am J Hypertens. doi: 10.1093/ajh/hpaa030