Juice concentrate from japanese fruit benefits cardiovascular health

Processed juice concentrate has anti-hypertensive effects in mice.

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High blood pressure, often known as hypertension, affects more than 122 million Americans, or over half of the U.S. population aged 20 and older. Hypertension is a primary cause of cardiovascular illness. Despite advances in treatment, even individuals who take blood pressure drugs are at high risk of dying from diseases such as heart attack, heart failure, and stroke.

Temple University’s Lewis Katz School of Medicine has discovered a possible alternative to the dearth of new medications to treat hypertension and accompanying cardiovascular complications properly.

The temple researchers show that a simple juice concentrate from the Japanese plum (Prunus mume) can lessen the risk of cardiovascular disease. The raw fruit of the Japanese plum, known as “Ume” in Japan, contains toxins and is frequently processed into juices or wine that are safe to consume.

Since the 18th century, the infused juice concentrate known as bainiku-ekisu has been used in Japan as a health supplement. Numerous claims have been made about the benefits of bainiku-ekisu, including its potential to prevent heart disease.

Satoru Eguchi, MD, Ph.D., FAHA, Professor in the Cardiovascular Research Center, Sol Sherry Thrombosis Research Center, and Center for Metabolic Disease Research at the Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University and senior investigator and co-corresponding author on the new study, said, “It is recognized that drugs alone are not enough to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease in hypertension patients, To help solve this problem, we became interested in a supplement that could potentially decrease cardiovascular disease risk and began investigating the effects of batik-kiss, an infused juice concentrate of the Japanese plum.”

In evaluates of blood vessel smooth muscle cells, bainiku-ekisu was discovered to suppress growth-promoting signals induced by angiotensin II, a circulatory hormone that plays a key role in the development of hypertension.

Dr. Eguchi and Dr. Hirotoshi Utsunomiya, Professors in the Department of Rehabilitation at Osaka Kawasaki Rehabilitation University in Japan and co-corresponding authors on the new study used an angiotensin II-induced hypertension mice model.

Mice received either ordinary water or bainiku-ekisu in the control group. The cardiovascular function and vascular tissues of both groups of mice indicated significant variations. Most importantly, animals fed bainiku-ekisu did not develop hypertension, and tissue research revealed that the juice concentrate protected the vasculature against angiotensin II’s effects.

The aorta’s hypertrophy (growth and enlargement) was limited in mice administered bainiku-ekisu, but control animals showed significant aortic hypertrophy. Bainiku-ekisu also reduces immune cell infiltration, which triggers hypertension-related inflammatory processes.

Dr. Eguchi explained, said, “In hypertension, cells shift from aerobic metabolism to glycolysis because there is less oxygen available in the cellular environment; this switch results in high levels of oxidative stress, which leads to more inflammation, more vascular stiffness, and, eventually, the development of more severe cardiovascular disease.”

Dr. Eguchi and colleagues then investigated potential Experiments in cells. They revealed that bainiku-ekisu inhibits the switch to glycolysis, suggesting that it protects against angiotensin II-induced hypertension by preventing detrimental metabolic alterations that underpin hypertrophy and inflammation.

Their next plan is to identify the specific bainiku-ekisu compounds responsible for their protective effects.

The National Institutes of Health funded the study, as will a research gift fund from Kobayashi Pharmaceutical Japan.

Journal Reference:

  1. Okuno, K., Torimoto, K., Kuroda, R. et al. Infused juice concentrate of Japanese plum Prunus mume attenuates inflammatory vascular remodeling in a mouse model of hypertension induced by angiotensin II. Hypertension. DOI:10.1038/s41440-023-01332-9

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