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Vitamin C prevents cigarette smoke induced atherosclerosis in guinea pig model. *


Cigarette smoking is a major risk for developing atherosclerosis; however, the underlying mechanism is poorly understood. This paucity of knowledge is largely attributed to the lack of an animal model; therefore, our efforts were targeted towards establishing cigarette smoke (CS)-induced atherosclerosis in guinea pig. To understand the mechanism, we investigated apoptosis, an event implicated in atherosclerosis, in the aorta of CS-exposed animals. Since a major deleterious effect of CS is oxidative stress, we also examined the effect of vitamin C, an antioxidant, on CS- induced atherosclerosis.


Guinea pigs on a diet with or without vitamin C supplement were exposed to CS for different time periods. Aortal sections from these animals were examined for atherosclerotic changes by staining with H&E and Oil red O. Atherogenic changes were observed in sections obtained from CS-exposed guinea pigs only. TUNEL assay showed the occurrence of apoptosis in CS-exposed guinea pig aorta. Our results revealed that CS-induced apoptosis could contribute to the progression but not to the initiation of the disease. Immunohistochemical analysis documents that CS-induced apoptosis in aortal sections is mediated at least in part by an increased Bax/Bcl2 ratio. In contrast, CS-exposed guinea pigs fed with vitamin C-supplemented diet exhibit little or no atherogenic changes. This anti-atherosclerotic activity of vitamin C can be attributed partly to its ability to inhibit CS-induced apoptosis and platelet activation.


Exposure of guinea pigs to cigarette smoke causes the development of atherosclerosis, which can be prevented by vitamin C supplement.

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As with any procedure, there could be pain or other substantial risks involved. These concerns should be discussed with your health care provider prior to any treatment so that you have proper informed consent and understand that there are no guarantees to healing.

THE INFORMATION IN THIS WEBSITE IS OFFERED FOR GENERAL EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY AND DOES NOT IMPLY OR GIVE MEDICAL ADVICE. No Doctor/Patient relationship shall be deemed to have arisen simply by reading the information contained on these pages, and you should consult with your personal physician/care giver regarding your medical treatment before undergoing any sort of treatment or therapy.

Published on 04-25-2013