We tested for sex-related differences in the pressure diuresis/natriuresis relationships in anaesthetized, renally denervated rabbits, using an extracorporeal circuit to perfuse the left kidney with the rabbit's own blood, through a series of step-wise increases in renal artery pressure (RAP) (from 65 to 130 mmHg). Urine flow, sodium excretion, and the fractional excretions of sodium and urine increased with increasing RAP, and were greater in male than in female rabbits at all levels of RAP-tested. However, these apparent sex-related differences in the acute pressure diuresis/natriuresis relationships were not reflected in alterations in chronic regulation of mean arterial pressure (MAP). Thus, in rabbits on a normal salt diet (0.85 g day(-1)), resting conscious MAP was significantly greater in males (87 +/- 3 mmHg) compared with females (77+/-1 mmHg). Chronically increasing daily salt intake to 4.98 g day(-1) for 28 days had no significant effect on resting conscious MAP in either sex. Thus, although our observations indicate sex differences, at least under the present experimental conditions, in the factors regulating extracellular fluid volume, these do not appear to have a major impact in setting the level of MAP in the long term.