Chinese red yeast rice attenuates the development of angiotensin II-induced abdominal aortic aneurysm and atherosclerosis.
J Nutr Biochem. 2012 Jun ;23(6):549-56. Epub 2011 Jul 20. PMID: 21764282
OBJECTIVE: Abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) is a chronic vascular disease characterized by medial degradation and inflammation. No medical approaches have been validated for treating AAA, and therapeutic options are limited to regular surveillance leading to surgical intervention. This study aimed to investigate whether administration of Chinese red yeast rice (Monascus purpureus; RYR) suppressed angiotensin II (AngII)-induced AAA and atherosclerosis.
METHODS AND RESULTS: Apolipoprotein E-deficient male mice fed a normal diet were administered either RYR extract (200 mg/kg/day) or vehicle by gavage for 1 week before initiating AngII infusion (1000 ng/kg/min) via subcutaneous osmotic pumps for 28 days. Red yeast rice extract administration significantly suppressed AngII-induced expansion of suprarenal diameter and area (P<.05). Furthermore, RYR extract significantly reduced atherosclerotic lesion areas in both the intima of aortic arches and cross sections of aortic roots (P<.05). These effects were associated with reductions of serum total cholesterol, intercellular adhesion molecule 1, vascular cell adhesion molecule 1, matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) 2 and increases of serum macrophage migration inhibitory factor, but no changes in serum interleukin (IL) 1α, IL-6, monocyte chemoattractant protein 1, MMP-9 and expression of MMP-2 and MMP-9 in aortic walls.
CONCLUSIONS: This study demonstrated that RYR extract administration suppressed AngII-induced AAA and atherosclerosis associated with regulating inflammation responses independent of lipid-lowering effects. Red yeast rice may have preventive potential for patients with AAA.