Effect of green tea on angiogenesis and severity of atherosclerosis in cholesterol-fed rabbit

Effect of green tea on angiogenesis and severity of atherosclerosis in cholesterol-fed rabbit

Author: N. Kavantzas and A. Chatziioannou and A.E. Yanni and D. Tsakayannis and D. Balafoutas and G. Agrogiannis and D. Perrea

Background and Aims Since the development of the atherosclerotic plaque requires the growth of new microvessels in the plaque itself (vasa vasorum), we postulated that green tea may exert an anti-atherogenic effect. Methods and results Thirteen male New Zealand white rabbits were studied for 17 weeks. All rabbits were fed an hypecholesterolemic diet. After 2 weeks of adaptation rabbits were randomly assigned into two groups. Animals in Group A were fed the hypercholesterolemic diet and received plain tap water ad libitum. Animals in Group B were fed with the same diet and furthermore received 2.5% (g/g) green tea for 17 weeks. Conclusion According to our results the atherosclerotic lesions were more severe in Group B than in Group A specimens. Also, the number of \{VEGF\} positively stained foam cells and smooth muscle cells of Group B were significantly greater than in Group A. About 30% less plaque was found in Group A than in the control group (Group B). So, our study showed that the consumption of green tea leads to a reduction of atherosclerosis as well as a significant decrease of VEGF expression in the atherosclerotic plaque of rabbit aorta. The hypothesis that probably green tea may produce its anti-atherogenetic effect through an anti-angiogenetic mechanism needs more investigation.


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