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Background and Objective: It has previously been reported that hypertension induced by the chronic blockade of NO (nitric oxide) production is characterized by increased blood pressure and impairment of endothelial-dependent vasorelaxation. Asiatic acid is widely found in dietary fruits and vegetables, and is a major component of various medicinal plants used in Asian countries. Thus, this study was to examine the effect of asiatic acid on the development of blood pressure in chronic nitric oxide-deficient rats.
Method: Male Sprague-Dawley rats were administered with Nω-nitro-L-arginine methyl ester (L-NAME) (40 mg/kg/day) in drinking water for five weeks. Asiatic acid (20 mg/kg/day) or vehicle was orally administered in last two weeks. Then hemodynamic parameters and vascular reactivity were measured.
Results: Daily administration of L-NAME for five weeks showed significant increases in blood pressure, heart rate, hindlimb vascular resistance, a decrease in hindlimb blood flow and impairment of vascular function (p<0.05). However, the supplementation of asiatic acid significantly alleviated the impairment of hemodynamic status and improved vascular function in L-NAME treated rats (p<0.05).
Conclusion: This study suggests that asiatic acid exhibit an anti-hypertensive effects in rats treated with L-NAME and its effect is likely to be linked with the restoration of endothelial function.
Key words: Asiatic acid, Hypertension, Vascular function
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