Effects of rosuvastatin on endothelial function in patients with familial combined hyperlipidaemia (FCH)

ter Avest, E., Abbink, E. J., Holewijn, S., de Graaf, J., Tack, C. J. & Stalenhoef, A. F. H., Sep-2005, In : Current Medical Research and Opinion. 21, 9, p. 1469-1476 8 p.

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  • Effects of rosuvastatin on endothelial function in patients with familial combined hyperlipidaemia (FCH)

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  • Ewoud ter Avest
  • Evertine J Abbink
  • Suzanne Holewijn
  • Jacqueline de Graaf
  • Cees J Tack
  • Anton F H Stalenhoef

OBJECTIVE: Although several studies have reported a positive effect of statins on endothelial vasoreactivity, most studies performed in subjects with type 2 diabetes mellitus report no effect at all. This lack of effect may be related to the existence of insulin resistance, or to insufficient lowering of atherogenic (apo)lipoproteins. Therefore, we tested in this study whether treatment of insulin resistant familial combined hyperlipidaemia (FCH) patients with a high dose (40 mg/day) of the potent rosuvastatin was able to improve endothelial function, without necessarily improving insulin sensitivity.

RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS: In a double-blind randomised crossover study, 18 subjects with FCH (without evident cardiovascular disease, mean [standard deviation] age 54 [7] years) underwent a 4-week run-in period after which they were randomised to treatment with placebo once daily for 12 weeks, followed by rosuvastatin 40 mg/day for 12 weeks or vice versa. Endothelial function was determined after 8 and 12 weeks of both treatment periods, respectively, by measurement of flow-mediated vasodilation (FMD) using high-resolution ultrasound and by measurement of vasodilator response to intrabrachial acetylcholine (Ach) by venous occlusion plethysmography (forearm blood flow [FBF]).

RESULTS: Plasma levels of lipids, (apo)lipoproteins and high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP) improved significantly after rosuvastatin therapy compared to placebo. However, rosuvastatin had no effect on homeostasis model assessment (HOMA)-indices or on vasodilator responses to intra-brachial acetylcholine-infusion (FBF-ratio increased from a mean of 1.28 [SD: 0.46] to 5.82 [3.44] after rosuvastatin and from 1.33 [0.67] to 5.99 [3.89] after placebo, p = 0.35). Endothelium-dependent FMD was also unchanged (1.6% [3.1%] vs. 3.2% [3.5]%, p = 0.56 rosuvastatin vs. placebo, respectively).

CONCLUSION: In patients with FCH, a 12-week treatment of rosuvastatin 40 mg/day did not improve endothelial function (either in large conduit vessels or in resistance vessels), despite significant improvements in plasma lipids, (apo)lipoproteins. and low-grade inflammation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1469-1476
Number of pages8
JournalCurrent Medical Research and Opinion
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sep-2005


  • Adult, Aged, Brachial Artery/diagnostic imaging, Cross-Over Studies, Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2/complications, Double-Blind Method, Endothelium, Vascular/diagnostic imaging, Female, Fluorobenzenes/pharmacology, Humans, Hydroxymethylglutaryl-CoA Reductase Inhibitors/pharmacology, Hyperlipidemia, Familial Combined/drug therapy, Insulin Resistance, Male, Middle Aged, Placebos, Plethysmography, Pyrimidines/pharmacology, Rosuvastatin Calcium, Sulfonamides/pharmacology, Treatment Outcome, Ultrasonography, Vasodilation

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