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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Little Rock, Arkansas » Microbiome and Metabolism Research Unit » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #251354

Title: Mechanisms of anti-atherosclerotic functions of soy-based diets

item NAGARAJAN, SHANMUGAM - Arkansas Children'S Nutrition Research Center (ACNC)

Submitted to: Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/3/2009
Publication Date: 4/14/2010
Citation: Nagarajan, S. 2010. Mechanisms of anti-atherosclerotic functions of soy-based diets. Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry. 21(4):255-260.

Interpretive Summary: Heart attack is caused by reduced blood flow to the heart. This is due to the thickening of blood vessels, also known as atherosclerosis. Asian populations consume diets high in soy. Studies have suggested that the decreased rate of heart disease may be due to their dietary consumption of soy. In the United States, more than 1 million infants a year are fed soy-based formula. Furthermore, the incidence of cardiovascular diseases is rising in obese children. Hence, we are interested in determining if soy can reduce the incidence of heart disease. We reported earlier, mice bred to develop atherosclerosis had fewer lesions in the aorta than mice fed the control diets made with casein. In this review article, we discussed possible mechanisms) contributing to the atheroprotective effect of soy diets. Future research will determine any additional mechanisms contributing to the protective effect of soy.

Technical Abstract: Soy-based diets have been reported to protect against the deelopment of atherosclerosis. However, the underlying mechanism (s) for this protection remains unknown. Althought atherosclerosis was traditionally considered a disease associated with impaired lipid metabolism, in recent years the inflammatory components of atherosclerosis have been explored. Recent studies have onvincinly delineated that uncontrolled chronic inflimation is the principal contributing facotr for the initiation and progression of atherosclerosis. Interaction beoween activated monocytes and vascular endothelial cells in an early event in atherogenesis. The adhesion of leukocytes, including monocytes, to the inflamed-vascular endothelium and their transmigration into intima initiate the lipid-laden masrophages, also known as foam cells. Hence in this review article the inflammatory processes associated with atherosclerosis and possible anti-inflammatory functions of soy-based diets contributing to teh prevention of athersclerous are presented.