Effect of treatment with pravastatin or ezetimibe on endothelial function in patients with moderate hypercholesterolemia

Center for the Study of Atherosclerosis-SISA Lombardia, Bassini Hospital, Via Gorki 50, 20092, Cinisello Balsamo, Milan, Italy.
European Journal of Clinical Pharmacology (Impact Factor: 2.7). 07/2012; 69(3). DOI: 10.1007/s00228-012-1345-z
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT BACKGROUND/AIM: Statin treatment improves endothelial function. It is matter of debate, however, if this effect of statins is due to their action on low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) or to other non-lipidic (pleiotropic) effects. The aim of this study was to evaluate whether the effect of pravastatin on endothelial function is mediated by pleiotropic effects. We therefore compared the effect of pravastatin and ezetimibe, a cholesterol absorption inhibitor, at doses yielding similar reductions in LDL-C and examined the effect of the two treatments on flow-mediated dilation (FMD) in hypercholesterolemic subjects. METHODS: A total of 33 moderately hypercholesterolemic patients were randomized into three treatment groups to receive ezetimibe 10 mg/day (n = 10), pravastatin 10 mg/day (n = 13) or no treatment (control, n = 10) for 6 weeks. To assess endothelial function, we determined FMD of the brachial artery non-invasively by high-resolution ultrasound before and after treatment. RESULTS: Ezetimibe and pravastatin treatment reduced LDL-C (mean ± standard error) to a similar extent (-20.6 ± 4.1 vs. -24.1 ± 4.0 %, respectively; P = 0.4771), while no decrease was observed in the control group. FMD increased significantly after treatment with ezetimibe (from 11.4 ± 5.7 to 16.8 ± 3.6 %; P = 0.022) and with pravastatin (from 13.7 ± 4.9 to 17.5 ± 4.4 %; P = 0.0466), but not in the control group. There were no differences in the endothelial function changes between the two treatment groups. CONCLUSIONS: In this study, two treatments that lower cholesterol via different mechanisms improved endothelial function to a similar extent, suggesting that the observed effect can be explained by the reduction of cholesterol levels.

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    ABSTRACT: Increased lipid profile after each meal can disturb the endothelial function. The present study assessed the effects of bread supplemented with oat bran on serum lipids and endothelial dysfunction in patients with hypercholesterolemia. This clinical trial was conducted on 60 isolated hypercholesterolemic patients. The subjects were randomly allocated to either intervention (consuming at least five daily servings of oat bread with 6 g beta-glucan) or control (receiving at least five servings of wheat bread). Anthropometric indicators, fasting blood sugar and lipid profiles ere measured at baseline and after 6 weeks (in the end of the intervention). Endothelial function was assessed using flow-mediated dilation (FMD). Within the group and between group differences were investigated using paired t-test and Student's t-test, respectively. Oat bread consumption could significantly reduce total cholesterol (P = 0.029). A significant increase in baseline and after ischemia brachial artery diameters at the end of the study was seen. However, it did not have a significant effect on FMD (P = 0.825). In the control group, none of the measured indices had changed significantly at the end of the study. Finally, only the mean change of brachial artery diameter after ischemia and baseline brachial artery diameter were significantly higher in the intervention group than in the control group (P = 0.036 and P = 0.012 respectively). Oat bread with beta-glucan could successfully reduce cholesterol levels. Furthermore, in this study oat bread did not reduce FMD more than wheat bread. Since hypercholesterolemia is a proven risk factor for endothelial dysfunction, hypercholesterolemic patients can hence be advised to eat oat bread.