Archive for atherosclerosis
CRP Concentrations Correlate With the Severity of Atherosclerosis
C-Reactive Protein is a marker for chronic inflammation in the body. Many experts believe that inflammation is a major contributor to heart disease. Make sure that CRP levels are checked with your cholesterol if you are at risk for heart disease.
Eur Heart J 2000;21:958-960,1000-1008 Dr. Mira-Christine Tataru from Herz- und Gefassklinik, in Bad Neustadt/Saale, and colleagues analyzed the relationship between plasma C-reactive protein levels and the severity of atherosclerosis in 1,112 male and 299 female survivors of acute myocardial infarction and in 326 male and 138 female age-matched controls without coronary disease. Confirming prior studies, Dr. Tataru and colleagues report that plasma C-reactive protein levels increase with age and are higher in smokers than in nonsmokers. Additionally, they report that C-reactive protein concentrations are higher in coronary heart disease patients than in control patients. Among survivors of acute myocardial infarction, C-reactive protein levels correlate with the angiographically detected severity of coronary heart disease. It is also noteworthy, the authors say, that C-reactive protein levels were higher not only in patients with clinically manifest atherosclerosis, but also in patients with preclinical stenoses of the pelvic and leg arteries as well as the extracranial arteries supplying the brain, or aneurysm of the abdominal aorta.
Enhanced Progression of Early Carotid Atherosclerosis & C pneumoniae
We are starting to see more and more evidence that an infectious etiology plays a part in heart disease. I believe that this is a big reason why mainstream medicine has such a problem with heart disease; there is no “one cause, one cure.” Inflammation, hyperinsulinemia, hypertension, oxidation of cholesterol, high homocysteine, infections…the list is quite long. An approach to heart disease prevention needs to be comprehensive and address all these factors. Putting on blinders and lowering only high blood pressure or cholesterol is not good enough.
Circulation — Abstracts: Sander et al. 103 (10): 1390
Metabolites of (+)-catechin, quercetin on monocyte adhesion to aorta
Flavonoids are substances found in nature, such as in certain fruits and teas. These substances were shown to lower the ability of monocytes to attach the the walls of arteries and cause damage that ultimately leads to atherosclerosis.
AJCN — Abstracts: Koga and Meydani 73 (5): 941
Magnesium sulphate and EDTA in the hypercholesterolaemic rabbit
Chelation therapy for the treatment and potential reversal of atherosclerosis has been viewed negatively for much of it’s history. However, much like a vast majority of alternative practices that have been used for a long time, some portion usually turns out to have some merit.
Synergy : Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism 3 (6), 417-422
Oxygenated Carotenoid Lutein and Progression of Early Atherosclerosis
This study shows a protective effect of the carotenoid lutein (a cousin of beta carotene) on hardening of the arteries. Something to remember here…it is always beta carotene that gets all the press, and yet nature makes many types of carotenoids and that we need whole foods to get the variety that optimal health needs. Also…some of the best quality multivitamins will also contain a variety of carotenoids.
Circulation — Abstracts: Dwyer et al. 103 (24): 2922
Infectious Burden and Long-Term Prognosis of Atherosclerosis
I think it is safe to add an infectious mechanism to the list of contributors to cardiovascular disease. A few interesting things here. H. pylori is included in the list of possible infectious agents. Could it be that the infectious agent is there because of some depression in the immune system? Much evidence points to a reduction in gastric Vit C as a risk factor for H. pylori infection. Considering that Vit C has definite benefits in CVD, it may actually be the Vit C and not the H. pylori infection…
Circulation — Abstracts: Espinola-Klein et al. 105 (1): 15
Reduced Progression of Atherosclerosis with Antibiotic Treatment & C. pneumoniae Seropositivity
The research that supports the role of infectious organsims in cardiovascular disease is building, and now we’re seeing the next step…treatment of the condition leads to reduction in the progression of the condition. My only thought…instead of antibiotics I would wonder if certain lifestyle changes designed to improve cardiovascular health may not exert a portion of their effects via supporting the immune system.
Circulation — Abstracts: Sander et al. 106 (19): 2428
DHEA Inhibits VSMC Proliferation Independent of ARs and ERs
I know it’s a big, long, complicated title, but basically this study shows that DHEA has independent effects on reducing atherosclerosis. Although DHEA is produced by the adrenals and converted to testosterone and then estrogen, this is an example of a precurser hormone/molecule having physiologic effects. Pretty amazing. Now, I would not recommend running out and taking bottles of DHEA to lower risk of CVD. However, making sure that your adrenal glands are functioning optimally is very important to maintaining healthy, physiologicaly normal levels.
JCEM — Abstracts: Williams et al. 87 (1): 176