Background-DBZ (Danshensu Bingpian Zhi), a synthetic derivative of a natural compound found in traditional Chinese medicine, has been reported to suppress lipopolysaccharide-induced macrophage activation and lipid accumulation in vitro. The aim of this study was to assess whether DBZ could attenuate atherosclerosis at early and advanced stages. Methods and Results-The effects of DBZ on the development of atherosclerosis were studied using apolipoprotein E-deficient (apoE-/-) mice. For early treatment, 5-week-old apoE-/- mice were fed a Western diet and treated daily by oral gavage with or without DBZ or atorvastatin for 10 weeks. For advanced treatment, 5-week-old apoE-/- mice were fed a Western diet for 10 weeks to induce atherosclerosis, and then they were randomly divided into 4 groups and subjected to the treatment of vehicle, 20 mg/kg per day DBZ, 40 mg/kg per day DBZ, or 10 mg/kg per day atorvastatin for the subsequent 10 weeks. We showed that early treatment of apoE-/- mice with DBZ markedly reduced atherosclerotic lesion formation by inhibiting inflammation and decreasing macrophage infiltration into the vessel wall. Treatment with DBZ also attenuated the progression of preestablished dietinduced atherosclerotic plaques in apoE-/- mice. In addition, we showed that DBZ may affect LXR (liver X receptor) function and that treatment of macrophages with DBZ suppressed lipopolysaccharide-stimulated cell migration and oxidized low-density lipoprotein-induced foam cell formation. Conclusions-DBZ potentially has antiatherosclerotic effects that involve the inhibition of inflammation, macrophage migration, leukocyte adhesion, and foam cell formation. These results suggest that DBZ may be used as a therapeutic agent for the prevention and treatment of atherosclerosis.
- Foam cell
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine