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Aging and vascular responses to flavanol-rich cocoa.
J Hypertens 2006; 24(8):1575-80JH

Abstract

OBJECTIVES

Strong evidence has secured aging as a powerful predictor of both cardiovascular risk and endothelial dysfunction, yet specific treatment is not available. We tested the hypothesis that vascular responsiveness to flavanol-rich cocoa increases with advancing age. We have previously shown that flavanol-rich cocoa induced peripheral vasodilation, improving endothelial function via a nitric oxide (NO)-dependent mechanism.

METHODS

We studied blood pressure and peripheral arterial responses to several days of cocoa in 15 young (< 50 years) and 19 older (> 50) healthy subjects.

RESULTS

The nitric oxide synthase (NOS) inhibitor N(omega)-nitro-L-arginine-methyl-ester (L-NAME) induced significant pressor responses following cocoa administration only among the older subjects: systolic blood pressure (SBP) rose 13 +/- 4 mmHg, diastolic blood pressure (DBP) 6 +/- 2 mmHg (P = 0.008 and 0.047, respectively); SBP was significantly higher in the older subjects (P < 0.05). Flow-mediated vasodilation, measured by tonometry in the finger, was enhanced with flavanol-rich cocoa in both groups, but significantly more so among the old (P = 0.01). Finally, basal pulse wave amplitude (PWA) followed a similar pattern. Four to six days of flavanol-rich cocoa caused a rise in PWA in both groups. At peak vasodilation following acute cocoa intake on the final day, both groups showed a further, significant rise in PWA. The response in the older subjects was more robust; P < 0.05. L-NAME significantly reversed dilation in both groups.

CONCLUSIONS

Flavanol-rich cocoa enhanced several measures of endothelial function to a greater degree among older than younger healthy subjects. Our data suggest that the NO-dependent vascular effects of flavanol-rich cocoa may be greater among older people, in whom endothelial function is more disturbed.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Department of Medicine, Harvard Medical School and the Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts, USA. nfisher@partners.orgNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article
Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

16877960

Citation

Fisher, Naomi D L., and Norman K. Hollenberg. "Aging and Vascular Responses to Flavanol-rich Cocoa." Journal of Hypertension, vol. 24, no. 8, 2006, pp. 1575-80.
Fisher ND, Hollenberg NK. Aging and vascular responses to flavanol-rich cocoa. J Hypertens. 2006;24(8):1575-80.
Fisher, N. D., & Hollenberg, N. K. (2006). Aging and vascular responses to flavanol-rich cocoa. Journal of Hypertension, 24(8), pp. 1575-80.
Fisher ND, Hollenberg NK. Aging and Vascular Responses to Flavanol-rich Cocoa. J Hypertens. 2006;24(8):1575-80. PubMed PMID: 16877960.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Aging and vascular responses to flavanol-rich cocoa. AU - Fisher,Naomi D L, AU - Hollenberg,Norman K, PY - 2006/8/1/pubmed PY - 2007/5/16/medline PY - 2006/8/1/entrez SP - 1575 EP - 80 JF - Journal of hypertension JO - J. Hypertens. VL - 24 IS - 8 N2 - OBJECTIVES: Strong evidence has secured aging as a powerful predictor of both cardiovascular risk and endothelial dysfunction, yet specific treatment is not available. We tested the hypothesis that vascular responsiveness to flavanol-rich cocoa increases with advancing age. We have previously shown that flavanol-rich cocoa induced peripheral vasodilation, improving endothelial function via a nitric oxide (NO)-dependent mechanism. METHODS: We studied blood pressure and peripheral arterial responses to several days of cocoa in 15 young (< 50 years) and 19 older (> 50) healthy subjects. RESULTS: The nitric oxide synthase (NOS) inhibitor N(omega)-nitro-L-arginine-methyl-ester (L-NAME) induced significant pressor responses following cocoa administration only among the older subjects: systolic blood pressure (SBP) rose 13 +/- 4 mmHg, diastolic blood pressure (DBP) 6 +/- 2 mmHg (P = 0.008 and 0.047, respectively); SBP was significantly higher in the older subjects (P < 0.05). Flow-mediated vasodilation, measured by tonometry in the finger, was enhanced with flavanol-rich cocoa in both groups, but significantly more so among the old (P = 0.01). Finally, basal pulse wave amplitude (PWA) followed a similar pattern. Four to six days of flavanol-rich cocoa caused a rise in PWA in both groups. At peak vasodilation following acute cocoa intake on the final day, both groups showed a further, significant rise in PWA. The response in the older subjects was more robust; P < 0.05. L-NAME significantly reversed dilation in both groups. CONCLUSIONS: Flavanol-rich cocoa enhanced several measures of endothelial function to a greater degree among older than younger healthy subjects. Our data suggest that the NO-dependent vascular effects of flavanol-rich cocoa may be greater among older people, in whom endothelial function is more disturbed. SN - 0263-6352 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/16877960/Aging_and_vascular_responses_to_flavanol_rich_cocoa_ L2 - http://Insights.ovid.com/pubmed?pmid=16877960 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -