Protective Effect of Epigallocatechin Gallate on Endothelial Disorders in Atherosclerosis

J Cardiovasc Pharmacol. 2020 Apr;75(4):292-298. doi: 10.1097/FJC.0000000000000792.


Healthy vascular endothelial cells regulate vascular tone and permeability, prevent vessel wall inflammation, enhance thromboresistance, and contribute to general vascular health. Furthermore, they perform important functions including the production of vasoactive substances such as nitric oxide (NO) and endothelium-derived hyperpolarizing factors, as well as the regulation of smooth muscle cell functions. Conversely, vascular endothelial dysfunction leads to atherosclerosis, thereby enhancing the risk of stroke, myocardial infarction, and other cardiovascular diseases (CVDs). Observational studies and randomized trials showed that green tea intake was inversely related to CVD risk. Furthermore, evidence indicates that epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) found in green tea might exert a preventive effect against CVDs. EGCG acts as an antioxidant, inducing NO release and reducing endothelin-1 production in endothelial cells. EGCG enhances the bioavailability of normal NO by reducing levels of the endogenous NO inhibitor asymmetric dimethylarginine. Furthermore, it inhibits the enhanced expression of adhesion molecules such as vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 and intercellular adhesion molecule-1 and attenuates monocyte adhesion. In addition, EGCG prevents enhanced oxidative stress through the Nrf2/HO-1 pathway. These effects indicate that it might prevent the production of reactive oxygen species, inhibit inflammation, and reduce endothelial cell apoptosis during the initial stages of atherosclerosis. The current review summarizes recent research in this area and discusses novel findings regarding the protective effect of EGCG on endothelial dysfunction and CVDs in general.

PMID:31895874 | DOI:10.1097/FJC.0000000000000792