Metoclopramide (10 mg i.v. injection followed by 10 mg/h i.v. for 2 h) caused a transient rise in blood concentrations of aldosterone in sodium-replete and sodium-depleted sheep. Infusion of metoclopramide into the adrenal artery of sheep with an autotransplanted adrenal gland, at a rate to give a similar concentration of metoclopramide at the adrenal cell level (calculated from rate of infusion and adrenal blood flow), resulted in no alteration in aldosterone secretion rate in either sodium-replete or sodium-depleted animals, even though intravenous metoclopramide caused transient stimulation of aldosterone secretion in the same sheep when sodium replete.
Dopamine administered either into the adrenal arterial blood supply or intravenously had no significant effect on aldosterone secretion and did not reverse the stimulatory effects of angiotensin II on aldosterone secretion in the adrenal transplant.
The data do not support the suggestion that direct dopaminergic elements play a tonic inhibitory role in aldosterone secretion. It is possible that the agonist effect of metoclopramide on aldosterone secretion may occur by some non-dopaminergic mechanism and it is tempting to speculate that the effect is centrally mediated.