Effects of Vitamin K_2 (Menatetrenone) on Atherosclerosis and Blood Coagulation in Hypercholesterolemic Rabbits

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γ-Carboxyglutamic acid (Gla)-containing protein, synthesized in the presence of vitamin K, has been found in atherogenic plaques, but the pharmacological effect of vitamin K on atherosclerosis is unclear. We examined whether vitamin K<SUB>2</SUB> (menatetrenone) could affect the progression of both atherosclerosis and hypercoagulability in hypercholesterolemic rabbits. Vitamin K<SUB>2</SUB> in daily doses of 1, 10 and 100 mg/kg was given with a 0.5% cholesterol diet for 10 weeks to 8 rabbits each. The plasma levels of totalcholesterol in the vitamin K<SUB>2</SUB>-treated groups were clearly lower than that of the hypercholesterolemic control group. The excessive dose of vitamin K<SUB>2</SUB>, even at the high dose of 100 mg/kg/day for 10 weeks, did not accelerate the progression of atherosclerosis and did not promote the coagulative tendency in the rabbits. In contrast, the vitamin K<SUB>2</SUB> treatment (1 to 10 mg/kg/day) suppressed the progression of atherosclerotic plaques, intima-thickening and pulmonary atherosclerosis, the increase of ester-cholesterol deposition in the aorta, and both the elevation in plasma factor X level and increase in Hepaplastin ® test value in the rabbits. These results indicate that the pharmacological dose of vitamin K<SUB>2</SUB> prevents both the progression of atherosclerosis and the coagulative tendency by reducing the total-cholesterol, lipid peroxidation and factor X activity in plasma, and the ester-cholesterol deposition in the aorta in hypercholesterolemic rabbits.


  • The Japanese Journal of Pharmacology

    The Japanese Journal of Pharmacology 75(2), 135-143, 1997-10-01

    The Japanese Pharmacological Society

References:  37

Cited by:  3


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