Multispecies Probiotic Supplementation Favorably Affects Vascular Function and Reduces Arterial Stiffness in Obese Postmenopausal Women-A 12-Week Placebo-Controlled and Randomized Clinical Study.
ABSTRACT: Obesity in the postmenopausal period is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular diseases in women. One of the key drivers of cardiovascular risk is endothelial dysfunction; thus, this is also a crucial point for studies on new therapeutic methods of cardioprotective properties. The aim of the current study was to evaluate the effect of two doses of multispecies probiotic Ecologic® Barrier supplement on functional (primary endpoint) and biochemical parameters (secondary endpoint) of endothelial dysfunction in obese postmenopausal women in a 12-week randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trial. A total of 81 obese Caucasian women participated in the trial. The subjects were randomly assigned to three groups that received a placebo, a low dose (LD) (2.5 × 10? colony forming units (CFU) per day), or a high dose (HD) (1 × 1010 CFU per day) of lyophilisate powder containing live multispecies probiotic bacteria. The probiotic supplement was administered each day for 12 weeks in two equal portions. A high dose probiotic supplementation for 12 weeks decreased systolic blood pressure, vascular endothelial growth factor, pulse wave analysis systolic pressure, pulse wave analysis pulse pressure, pulse wave analysis augmentation index, pulse wave velocity, interleukin-6, tumor necrosis factor alpha, and thrombomodulin. Low doses of probiotic supplementation decreased the systolic blood pressure and interleukin-6 levels. The mean changes in the estimated parameters, compared among the three groups, revealed significant differences in the vascular endothelial growth factor, the pulse wave analysis systolic pressure, the pulse wave analysis augmentation index, the pulse wave velocity, the tumor necrosis factor alpha, and thrombomodulin. The post hoc tests showed significant differences for all parameters between HD and the placebo group, and HD and LD (besides pulse wave analysis augmentation index). We show for the first time that supplementation with multispecies probiotic Ecologic® Barrier favorably modifies both functional and biochemical markers of vascular dysfunction in obese postmenopausal women.
Project description:PURPOSE:Consumption of nitrate-rich beetroot juice can lower blood pressure in peripheral as well as central arteries and may exert additional hemodynamic benefits (e.g. reduced aortic wave reflections). The specific influence of nitrate supplementation on arterial pressures and aortic wave properties in postmenopausal women, a group that experiences accelerated increases in these variables with age, is unknown. Accordingly, the primary aim of this study was to determine the effect of consuming nitrate-rich beetroot juice on resting brachial and aortic blood pressures (BP) and pulse wave characteristics in a group of healthy postmenopausal women, in comparison to a true (nitrate-free beetroot juice) placebo. METHODS:Brachial (oscillometric cuff) and radial (SphygmoCor) pressures and derived-aortic waveforms were measured during supine rest in thirteen healthy postmenopausal women (63?±?1?yr) before and 100?min after consumption of 140?ml of either nitrate-rich (9.7?mmol, 0.6?gm NO3-) or nitrate-depleted beetroot juice on randomized visits approximately 10 days apart (cross-over design). Ten young premenopausal women (22?±?1?yr) served as a reference (non-supplemented) cohort. RESULTS:Brachial and derived-aortic variables showed the expected age-associated differences in these women (all p?<?0.05). In post-menopausal women, nitrate supplementation reduced (p?<?0.05 vs. placebo visit) brachial systolic BP (BRnitrate -4.9?±?2.1?mmHg vs BRplacebo +1.1 ± 1.8 mmHg), brachial mean BP (BRnitrate -4.1?±?1.7?mmHg vs BRplacebo +0.9 ± 1.3 mmHg), aortic systolic BP (BRnitrate -6.3?±?2.0?mmHg vs BRplacebo +0.5 ± 1.7 mmHg) and aortic mean BP (BRnitrate -4.1?±?1.7?mmHg vs BRplacebo +0.9 ± 1.3 mmHg), and increased pulse pressure amplification (BRnitrate +4.6 ± 2.0% vs BRplacebo +0.7 ± 2.5%, p = 0.04), but did not alter aortic pulse wave velocity or any other derived-aortic variables (e.g., augmentation pressure or index). CONCLUSIONS:Dietary nitrate supplementation favorably modifies aortic systolic and mean blood pressure under resting conditions in healthy postmenopausal women. Acute supplementation of nitrate does not, however, appear to restore indices of aortic stiffness in this group. Future work should evaluate chronic, long-term effects of this non-pharmacological supplement.
Project description:We aimed to study whether inhibition of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system has effects on vascular structure and function beyond the effects on blood pressure reduction alone. Patients with mild-to-moderate hypertension (n = 61, age 54 ± 12 years, 34% women) received the angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor ramipril 10 mg or the alpha 1-adrenoceptor blocker doxazosin 8 mg double-blind for 12 weeks. Aortic blood pressure, pulse wave velocity, and augmentation index were assessed by applanation tonometry. Endothelial function was studied by forearm post-ischemic flow mediated vasodilatation and by pulse wave analysis with beta 2-adrenoceptor agonist stimulation. Skin microvascular reactivity was assessed by laser Doppler fluxmetry and iontophoresis. Treatment with doxazosin or ramipril reduced aortic and brachial blood pressures (all P < 0.001), with greater reductions in aortic than brachial systolic blood pressures (P = 0.021) and aortic/brachial pulse pressure ratio (P = 0.005). Compared to doxazosin, ramipril reduced carotid-femoral and carotid-radial pulse wave velocity (both P < 0.05). Forearm endothelial dependent and independent vasodilatation, assessed by post-ischemic flow mediated vasodilatation and glyceryl trinitrate, and by pulse wave analysis remained unchanged by both doxazosin and ramipril. In addition, skin microvascular endothelial dependent (acetylcholine) and independent vasodilatation (sodium nitroprusside) remained unchanged. In conclusion, ramipril reduced indices of aortic stiffness, suggesting that angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor therapy may have effects beyond blood pressure reduction. However, treatment did not appear to influence endothelial function. Evidence of endothelial dysfunction and its possible improvement by antihypertensive treatment might require more advanced hypertension.This study is registered at ClinicalTrials.gov (NCT02901977) and at EudraCT (# 2007-000631-25).
Project description:The age-related increase in pulse pressure (PP) and systolic blood pressure (SBP) is often attributed to alterations in the wave reflection profile and augmented contributions of the reflected waves. However, clinical evidence shows that the stiffening of the proximal aorta with age and the consequent augmentation of the forward pressure wave plays an equally important role. The relative importance of the forward and reflected wave components in essential hypertension has not yet been fully elucidated.The aim of the current investigation was to simulate the major ageing mechanisms in the arterial system and the heart using a mathematical one-dimensional model of the arterial tree and to assess the evolution of systolic and pulse pressure during normal (non-pathological) ageing.Our state-of-the-art 1-D model was extended to include turbulence and inertial effects of the flow exiting the left ventricle. Literature data on the age-associated changes in arterial stiffness, peripheral resistance and cardiac contractility were gathered and used as an input for the simulations. The predicted evolution of pressure and augmentation index with age followed accurately the curves obtained in a number of large-scale clinical studies. Analysis of the relative contribution of the forward and backward wave components showed that the forward wave becomes the major determinant of the increase in central and peripheral SBP and PP with advancing age.The 1-D model of the ageing tree and heart captures faithfully and with great accuracy the central pressure evolution with ageing. The stiffening of the proximal aorta and the resulting augmentation of the forward pressure wave is the major contributor of the systolic pressure augmentation with age.
Project description:This study aimed to evaluate the effects of the intake of 10 g of cocoa-rich chocolate on blood pressure, other cardiovascular risk factors, and vascular structure and function in postmenopausal women. A total of 140 postmenopausal women participated in this randomized and controlled parallel clinical trial. For six months, the intervention group (IG; n = 73) consumed daily 10 g of chocolate (99% cocoa) added to their usual food intake, whereas the control group (CG; n = 67) did not receive any intervention. Blood pressure, pulse pressure (PP), cardio-ankle vascular index (CAVI), ankle-brachial index (ABI), brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity (baPWV), augmentation index, and laboratory variables were measured at baseline and six months. ANCOVA analyses adjusted for baseline values revealed no significant differences for systolic blood pressure (-1.45 mm Hg; 95% confidence interval (CI): -4.79, 1.88; p = 0.391) or baPWV (0.18 m/s; 95% CI: -0.14, 0.50; p = 0.263) between groups. A decrease in PP was observed in the IG compared to the CG (-2.05 mm Hg; 95% CI: -4.08, -0.02; p = 0.048). The rest of the vascular structure and function parameters and other measured variables remained unchanged. The daily intake of 10 g of cocoa-rich chocolate seems to provide little improvement to cardiovascular health, but neither does it cause any adverse effects on the parameters evaluated in postmenopausal women in the long term.
Project description:During the postmenopausal period, the risk of cardiovascular diseases is increased in many obese women and is associated with a worse cardiometabolic profile and a sub-chronic low-grade systemic inflammation caused by a gut barrier permeability dysfunction. Here, we tested whether administration of two different dosages of the multispecies probiotic Ecologic® Barrier influenced the cardiometabolic biochemical parameters and lipopolysaccharide levels, the latter used as a marker of increased gut permeability in obese postmenopausal women. A total of 81 obese Caucasian postmenopausal women participated in the trial. The subjects were randomly assigned to three groups that received a placebo, a low dose (LD) (2.5 × 10⁸ colony forming units (CFU) per day), or a high dose (HD) (1 × 1010 CFU per day) of lyophilisate powder containing live multispecies probiotic bacteria. The probiotic supplement was administered each day in two equal portions for 12 weeks. We found significant (p < 0.05) favorable changes (mostly large or medium effects) in the evaluated parameters in both the HD and LD groups but not in the placebo group. In the HD group, lipopolysaccharide, waist, fat mass, subcutaneous fat, uric acid, total cholesterol, triglycerides, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, glucose, insulin, and insulin-resistant index (HOMA-IR) were improved. Similar changes were observed in the LD group, except for lipopolysaccharide, uric acid, triglycerides, and glucose levels. Additionally, significant differences were observed in both groups in terms of fat percentage and visceral fat. When the mean changes were compared between the three groups, statistically significant differences in lipopolysaccharide levels, uric acid, glucose, insulin, and HOMA-IR were found. Post hoc tests revealed significant differences in the mean changes (mostly medium effects) between the HD and LD groups for uric acid, glucose, insulin, and HOMA-IR. In the 12-week randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind intervention, we observed that supplementation with the multispecies probiotic Ecologic® Barrier favorably affected the risk factors in a dose-dependent manner, showing beneficial effects on the cardiometabolic parameters and gut permeability of the patients. Our results suggest that this product can be effective in the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular diseases in obese postmenopausal women.
Project description:OBJECTIVES:To describe the epidemiology and parent-child concordance of vascular function in a population-based sample of Australian parent-child dyads at child age 11-12 years. DESIGN:Cross-sectional study (Child Health CheckPoint), nested within a prospective cohort study, the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children (LSAC). SETTING:Assessment centres in seven major Australian cities and eight regional towns or home visits, February 2015-March 2016. PARTICIPANTS:Of all participating CheckPoint families (n=1874), 1840 children (49% girls) and 1802 parents (88% mothers) provided vascular function data. Survey weights and methods were applied to account for LSAC's complex sample design and clustering within postcodes and strata. OUTCOME MEASURES:The SphygmoCor XCEL assessed vascular function, generating estimates of brachial and central systolic blood pressure and diastolic blood pressure, central pulse pressure, augmentation index and carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity. Pearson's correlation coefficients and multivariable linear regression models estimated parent-child concordance. RESULTS:Hypertension was present in 3.9% of children and 9.0% of parents. Mean child and parent values for augmentation index were 4.5% (SD 11.6) and 21.3% (SD 12.3), respectively, and those for carotid-femoral pulse wave velocity were 4.48 m/s (SD 0.59) and 6.85 m/s (SD 1.14), respectively. Parent-child correlation for brachial systolic blood pressure was 0.20 (95% CI 0.15 to 0.24), brachial diastolic blood pressure 0.21 (95% CI 0.16 to 0.26), central systolic blood pressure 0.21 (95% CI 0.16 to 0.25), central diastolic blood pressure 0.21 (95% CI0.17 to 0.26), central pulse pressure 0.19 (95% CI 0.14 to 0.24), augmentation index 0.28 (95% CI 0.23 to 0.32) and pulse wave velocity 0.22 (95% CI 0.18 to 0.27). CONCLUSIONS:We report Australian values for traditional and more novel vascular function markers, providing a reference for future population studies. Cross-generational concordance in multiple vascular function markers is already established by age 11-12 years, with mechanisms of heritability remaining to be explored.
Project description:Background Isolated systolic hypertension (ISH) of the young has been associated with both normal and increased cardiovascular risk, which has been attributed to differences in central systolic blood pressure and arterial stiffness. Methods We assessed the prevalence of ISH of the young and compared differences in central systolic blood pressure and arterial stiffness between ISH and other hypertensive phenotypes in a multi-ethnic population of 3744 subjects (44% men), aged <40 years, participating in the HELIUS study. Results The overall prevalence of ISH was 2.7% (5.2% in men and 1.0% in women) with the highest prevalence in individuals of African descent. Subjects with ISH had lower central systolic blood pressure and pulse wave velocity compared with those with isolated diastolic or systolic-diastolic hypertension, resembling central systolic blood pressure and pulse wave velocity values observed in subjects with high-normal blood pressure. In addition, they had a lower augmentation index and larger stroke volume compared with all other hypertensive phenotypes. In subjects with ISH, increased systolic blood pressure amplification was associated with male gender, Dutch origin, lower age, taller stature, lower augmentation index and larger stroke volume. Conclusion ISH of the young is a heterogeneous condition with average central systolic blood pressure values comparable to individuals with high-normal blood pressure. On an individual level ISH was associated with both normal and raised central systolic blood pressure. In subjects with ISH of the young, measurement of central systolic blood pressure may aid in discriminating high from low cardiovascular risk.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Liquorice ingestion often elevates blood pressure, but the detailed haemodynamic alterations are unknown. We studied haemodynamic changes induced by liquorice consumption in 20 subjects versus 30 controls with average blood pressures of 120/68 and 116/64 mmHg, respectively.<h4>Methods</h4>Haemodynamic variables were measured in supine position before and after two weeks of liquorice consumption (daily glycyrrhizin dose 290-370 mg) with tonometric recording of radial blood pressure, pulse wave analysis, and whole-body impedance cardiography. Thirty age-matched healthy subjects maintaining their normal diet were studied as controls.<h4>Results</h4>Two weeks of liquorice ingestion elevated peripheral and central systolic and diastolic blood pressure (by 7/4 and 8/4 mmHg, 95% confidence intervals [CI] 2-11/1-8 and 3-13/1-8, respectively, P<0.05), and increased extracellular volume by 0.5 litres (P<0.05 versus controls). Also augmentation index adjusted to heart rate 75/min (from 7% to 11%, 95% CI for change 0.3-7.5, P<0.05) and aortic pulse pressure (by 4 mmHg, 95% CI 1-7, P<0.05) were elevated indicating increased wave reflection from the periphery. In contrast, peripheral (-3/-0.3 mmHg) and central blood pressure (-2/-0.5 mmHg), aortic pulse pressure (-1 mmHg), and augmentation index adjusted to heart rate 75/min (from 9% to 7%) decreased numerically but not statistically significantly without changes in extracellular volume in the control group. Heart rate, systemic vascular resistance, cardiac output, and pulse wave velocity did not differ between the groups.<h4>Conclusions</h4>Two weeks of daily liquorice consumption increased extracellular volume, amplified pressure wave reflection from the periphery, and elevated central systolic and diastolic blood pressure.<h4>Trial registration</h4>EU Clinical Trials Register EudraCT 2006-002065-39 ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01742702.
Project description:Treatment with beta-blockers is characterized by inferior reduction of central versus peripheral blood pressure. We examined changes in blood pressure, cardiac function, and vascular resistance after 3 weeks of bisoprolol treatment (5?mg/day) during passive head-up tilt in 16 never-treated Caucasian males with grade I-II primary hypertension. A double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled cross-over design was applied, and hemodynamics were recorded using continuous tonometric pulse wave analysis and whole-body impedance cardiography. Bisoprolol decreased blood pressure in the aorta (~8/10?mmHg, p???0.032) and radial artery (~10/9?mmHg, p???0.037), but upright aortic systolic blood pressure was not significantly reduced (p?=?0.085). Bisoprolol reduced heart rate and left cardiac work, and increased subendocardial viability index in supine and upright positions (p???0.044 for all). Bisoprolol increased stroke volume in the supine (~11?ml, p?=?0.02) but not in the upright position, while only upright (~1?l/min, p?=?0.007) but not supine cardiac output was reduced. Upright elevation in systemic vascular resistance was increased 2.7-fold (p?=?0.002), while upright pulse pressure amplification was decreased by ~20% (p?=?0.002) after bisoprolol. Aortic augmentation index, augmentation pressure, and pulse pressure were not changed in the supine position but were increased in the upright position (from 9% to 17%, 3-6?mmHg, and 30-34?mmHg, respectively, p???0.016 for all). In conclusion, although bisoprolol treatment reduced peripheral blood pressure, central systolic blood pressure in the upright position was not decreased. Importantly, the harmful influences of bisoprolol on central pulse pressure and pressure wave reflection were manifested in the upright position.
Project description:We developed a whole-circulation computational model by integrating a transmission line (TL) model describing vascular wave transmission into the established CircAdapt platform of whole-heart mechanics. In the present paper, we verify the numerical framework of our TL model by benchmark comparison to a previously validated pulse wave propagation (PWP) model. Additionally, we showcase the integrated CircAdapt-TL model, which now includes the heart as well as extensive arterial and venous trees with terminal impedances. We present CircAdapt-TL haemodynamics simulations of: 1) a systemic normotensive situation and 2) a systemic hypertensive situation. In the TL-PWP benchmark comparison we found good agreement regarding pressure and flow waveforms (relative errors ? 2.9% for pressure, and ? 5.6% for flow). CircAdapt-TL simulations reproduced the typically observed haemodynamic changes with hypertension, expressed by increases in mean and pulsatile blood pressures, and increased arterial pulse wave velocity. We observed a change in the timing of pressure augmentation (defined as a late-systolic boost in aortic pressure) from occurring after time of peak systolic pressure in the normotensive situation, to occurring prior to time of peak pressure in the hypertensive situation. The pressure augmentation could not be observed when the systemic circulation was lumped into a (non-linear) three-element windkessel model, instead of using our TL model. Wave intensity analysis at the carotid artery indicated earlier arrival of reflected waves with hypertension as compared to normotension, in good qualitative agreement with findings in patients. In conclusion, we successfully embedded a TL model as a vascular module into the CircAdapt platform. The integrated CircAdapt-TL model allows detailed studies on mechanistic studies on heart-vessel interaction.