Beneficial clinical effects of grape seed proanthocyanidin extract on the progression of carotid atherosclerotic plaques.
J Geriatr Cardiol. 2015 Jul ;12(4):417-23. PMID: 26345394
BACKGROUND: Atherosclerotic plaques indicate the occurrence of ischemia events and it is a difficult task for clinical physicians. Grape seed proanthocyanidin extract (GSPE) has been reported to exert an antiatherogenic effect by inducing regression of atherosclerotic plaques in animal experimental studies. In this study, the antiatherogenic effect of GSPE has been investigated in clinical use.
METHODS: Consecutive 287 patients diagnosed with asymptomatic carotid plaques or abnormal plaque free carotid intima-media thickness (CIMT) were randomly assigned to the GSPE group (n = 146) or control group (n = 141). The patients in the GSPE group received GSPE 200 mg per day orally, while patients in the control group were only enrolled in a lifestyle intervention program. Carotid ultrasound examination was performed at baseline and 6, 12, 24 months during follow-up. Mean maximum CIMT (MMCIMT), plaque score, echogenicity of plaques and ischemic vascular events were recorded.
RESULTS: As anticipated, after treatment, GSPE resulted in significant reduction in MMCIMT progression (4.2% decrease after six months, 4.9% decrease after 12 months and 5.8% decrease after 24 months) and plaque score (10.9% decrease after six months, 24.1% decrease after 12 months and 33.1% decrease after 24 months) for the primary outcome, while MMCIMT and plaque score were stable and even increased with the time going on in control group. The number of plaques and unstable plaques also decreased after treatment of GSPE. Furthermore, the carotid plaque can disappear after treatment with GSPE. The incidence rate for transitory ischemic attack (TIA), arterial revascularization procedure, and hospital readmission for unstable angina in GSPE group were statistically significant lower (P = 0.02, 0.08, 0.002, respectively) compared with the control group.
CONCLUSIONS: GSPE inhibited the progression of MMCIMT and reduced carotid plaque size in GSPE treated patients, and with extended treatment, the superior efficacy on MMCIMT and carotid plaque occurred. Furthermore, the GSPE group showed lower rates of clinical vascular events.