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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: IMPACT OF EARLY DIETARY FACTORS ON CHILD DEVELOPMENT AND HEALTH Title: Acai Juice Attenuates Atherosclerosis Through Antioxidant and Anti-Inflammatory Effects in ApoE Deficient Mice

Authors
item Wu, Xianli -
item Kang, Jie -
item Xie, Chenghui -
item Burris, Ramona -
item Ferguson, Matthew -
item Schauss, Alexander -
item Nagarajan, Shanmugam -

Submitted to: American Heart Association Meeting
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: July 15, 2010
Publication Date: N/A

Interpretive Summary: Acai fruit (Euterpe oleracea Mart.) has been shown to exhibit extremely high antioxidant capacity. ApoE deficient (ApoE-/-) mice (15 per group) fed AIN-93G diet (chow diet, CD) or CD formulated to contain 5% freeze-dried acai juice powder (AJ) to study the effects of acai juice in prevention of atherosclerosis. Atherosclerotic lesion for apoE-/- mice fed AJ compared to CD was 58% lower. Biomarkers of lipid peroxidation were significantly lower in serum and/or liver of AJ fed animals. Two antioxidant enzyme genes were significantly up-regulated in mice fed AJ; whereas seven genes related to inflammatory factors were significantly down-regulated in AJ-fed mice compared to CD-fed mice. We propose that a reduction of lipid peroxidation and inflammatory factors may account for the reduction in atherosclerotic lesion area.

Technical Abstract: Introduction: Acai fruit (Euterpe oleracea Mart.) has been shown to exhibit extremely high antioxidant capacity. Antioxidant capacities and anti-inflammatory effects of acai pulp or acai juices have been studied in human, animal and cell culture models. However, their potential effects on atherosclerosis are not yet established. Methods: We studied 30 apoE deficient (ApoE-/-) mice (15 per group) fed AIN-93G diet (chow diet, CD) or CD formulated to contain 5% freeze-dried acai juice powder (AJ). Mice were sacrificed after 20 weeks on the specified diet. Lesion analysis of the descending aorta (enface analysis) was carried out after staining the descending aorta with Sudan IV and was performed independently by two individuals blinded to the study design. The results are reported as percentage of the total descending aorta area that contained lesions. Serum lipids including total-, HDL- and LDL-cholesterol and triglycerides were determined in all animals. Total serum antioxidant capacity was measured by oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC). Biomarkers of lipid peroxidation were measured in the serum and liver by HPLC-MS/MS. Expression of 45 genes related to antioxidant/oxidant enzymes and inflammatory factors was measured by PCR array. Results: The mean aorta lesion area for apoE-/- mice fed AJ compared to CD was 58% lower (3.02 ± 1.34% vs. 7.05 ± 2.47%, p<0.001). There were no differences for total-, LDL-cholesterol or triglycerides between the two groups at the end of the study. HDL-cholesterol of mice fed AJ was significantly higher (1.04 ± 0.10 mmol/L vs. 0.87 ± 0.10 mmol/L, p<0.05) than that of mice fed CD. While serum total antioxidant capacity measured by ORAC did not differ between CD and AJ fed animals, biomarkers of lipid peroxidation, including F2-isoprostane, 9- and 13-hydroxyoctadecadienoic acid and 8-, 11- and 12-hydroxyeicosatetraenoic acid were significantly lower (p<0.05 to p<0.001) in serum and/or liver of AJ fed animals. In pooled aorta samples, two antioxidant enzyme genes, Gpx3 and Gsr, were significantly up-regulated in mice fed AJ; whereas seven genes related to inflammatory factors, F3, MMP-2, MMP-9, Ccl5, Cd36, Vcam1 and Cx3cl1, were significantly down-regulated in AJ-fed mice compared to CD-fed mice. Conclusions: Acai juice consumption reduces development of atherosclerosis in hyperlipidemic apoE-/- mice model. We propose that a reduction of lipid peroxidation and inflammatory factors may account for the reduction in atherosclerotic lesion area. However, clinical validation of these findings is needed.

Last Modified: 11/22/2014