Article summaryBNP (B-Type Natriuretic Peptide, Brain Natriuretic Peptide)
- What is BNP?
- What is BNP doing in the body?
- When will BNP be determined?
- What is BNP determined from?
- BNP normal values
- When can the BNP value be too high?
- Can the BNP value be too low?
What is BNP?
BNP (B-type Natriuretic Peptide or Brain Natriuretic Peptide) and ANP (Atrial Natriuretic Peptide) are hormones that play an important role in controlling water balance and blood pressure. They are referred to as Natriuretic Peptides. Both hormones are formed mainly in the muscle cells of the heart: BNP in the heart chambers, ANP in the atria. Small amounts of ANP and BNP are also produced in the adrenals and brain.
BNPs first detected scientists in the brain of pigs. That's why they called it "brain Natriuretic Peptide". Meanwhile, the more appropriate name "B-type Natriuretic Peptide" is also common.To the table of contents
What is BNP doing in the body?
When the pressure in the heart increases, the heart muscle cells release ANP and BNP. An increase in pressure occurs, for example, when there is a lot of blood in the bloodstream or the blood pressure is very high. ANP and BNP cause the kidneys to excrete more sodium and water: this decreases the blood volume - the blood pressure drops. In addition, the two hormones expand the blood vessels and slow down the production of the hormone aldosterone: this also lowers blood pressure.
In people with acute heart failure, the heart no longer manages to supply the body with enough blood. The blood builds up in the heart. This is the incentive for the muscle cells to release BNP and ANP. Elevated values may therefore point to acute heart failure. But also in other diseases, the values may increase, for example, in a kidney failure.