Chronic dietary administration of L-tryptophan (2.5 and 5.0 g/100 g food) to rats provided significant protection against the development of hypertension induced by bilateral encapsulation of the kidneys with latex envelopes. Lower doses of tryptophan (0.5 and 1.0 g/100 g food) attenuated the rate of elevation of blood pressure, but failed to maintain systolic blood pressures at levels significantly below that of untreated renal hypertensive controls. The body weight of the rats was not affected significantly by treatment with any dose of tryptophan used. Chronic treatment with tryptophan also protected against the reduced urinary concentrating ability during a 24-hour dehydration that characteristically accompanies renal encapsulation. A modest (5–8%) effect of treatment to reduce cardiac hypertrophy was also observed. The mechanism of the antihypertensive effect of tryptophan is not revealed by these studies although they rule out the possibilities that reduction in sodium intake and/or reduction in body weight may be important factors.