Atrial Natriuretic factor

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What is Atrial Natriuretic Factor?

ANF – Atrial natriuretic factor is called the hormone of the heart. It is a protein-based hormone, secreted and released by the cardiac muscle cells. The synthesized hormones are released into the atrium in counter to the high blood pressure through the heart muscle cells. The ANF – Atrial natriuretic factor is also called ANP – Atrial Natriuretic Peptide or ANH – Atrial Natriuretic Hormone or Atriopeptin.

ANF is an important vasodilator, which is involved in the homeostatic regulation of body fluids, sodium, potassium and fats in the adipose tissue.

Production of ANF – Atrial Natriuretic Factor

The ANF is synthesized as inactive peptide hormones and is encoded by the human NPPA- natriuretic peptide A, a gene located on the short arm of chromosome 1.

The ANF is secreted and produced in response to:

  1. Stress or injury.
  2. Hypernatremia – An increased sodium concentration.
  3. Increased sympathetic stimulation of adrenoceptors.
  4. It is produced, stored and released by cardiac myocytes of the atria of the heart.
  5. It is released in response to the stretching of the atrial wall induced by exercise, hypervolemia and caloric restriction.

Physiological effects of ANF – Atrial Natriuretic Factor

Atrial natriuretic factor acts on various organs of the human body and is mainly involved in the following physiological effects.

  • ANF acts as an anti-hypertensive hormone.
  • ANF dilates the blood vessels to reduce the blood pressure.
  • ANF helps in the reduction of reabsorption of sodium by acting on several segments of the nephron and other inner medullary collecting ducts.
  • ANF is also involved in the increase in renal blood flow and an increase in glomerular filtration rate through the process of Vasodilation- the widening of blood vessels.

Also Refer: Regulation Of Kidney Function

This article concludes an introduction to Atrial Natriuretic Factor and its physiological effects. To know more about the Atrial natriuretic factor, functions, other related topics and important questions, keep visiting our website at BYJU’S Biology.

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