Background: Although the recommended target blood pressure for patients with chronic kidney disease is <130/80 mm Hg, this is difficult to achieve by treatment with an angiotensin receptor blocker alone. Addition of either a calcium channel blocker or a diuretic is suggested as second-line medication; however, which combination is most beneficial for target-organ protection remains unknown. Methods: SHR/NDmcr-cp rats were administered no medications (control) or low-dose olmesartan for 2 weeks and then either olmesartan at an increased dose, azelnidipine, or the hydrochlorothiazide for 3 weeks. We assessed oxidative stress in the kidney and aorta, and endothelial function. Results: Urinary protein excretion was lower in all treated rats than in control rats. Oxidative stress caused by activation of NAD(P)H oxidase was observed in the glomeruli and aorta of control rats and was significantly suppressed in the olmesartan/azelnidipine (Olm/Azl) groups. Combination therapy with olmesartan and hydrochlorothiazide (Olm/HCTZ) however failed to suppress oxidative stress. The Olm/Azl groups maintained the endothelial surface layer in the glomeruli and protected endothelial function in the aorta. Conclusion: In an animal model of metabolic syndrome, a combination of Olm/Azl is superior to a combination of Olm/HCTZ in terms of prevention of glomerular and vascular injuries.

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