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Geniposidic acid on the protection of endothelial cells

Geniposidic acid is a natural chemical compound, classified as an iridoid glucoside, found in a variety of plants including Eucommia ulmoides and Gardenia jasminoides.
Objective: To evaluate its anti-atherosclerosis (anti-AS) effect, the related pharmacological activities and possible cellular mechanisms were studied.
Materials and methods: Thirty rabbits were randomly divided into normal control group, model control group, and geniposidic acid subgroups. In the AS model, its effects on the intima/media thickness ratio and aortic morphology were observed. In the study of primary cultured endothelial cells (ECs) and human umbilical artery smooth muscle cells (HUASMCs), its activities on both ECs and HUASMCs proliferation, HUASMCs' migration were also studied.
Results: Compared with the model control group, the plaque area, intima/media thickness ratio, and intimal foam cells number in geniposidic acid (80, 160, and 240 mg/kg) subgroups were significantly improved (p < 0.05). By HE staining, the activities of geniposidic acid on relieving ECs shedding and improving aortic morphology disorders were also demonstrated. From the results of CCK-8 testing, only 100 μg/ml geniposidic acid performed significant inhibition on SMC proliferation. The relative IC50 of geniposidic acid on SMC inhibition was 87.73 μg/ml. Geniposide acid also showed promotion effect on ECs proliferation, and the related ED50 of geniposidic acid was 86.05 μg/ml. Besides, only 50 and 100 μg/ml geniposidic acid showed obvious inhibition on SMC migration from the upper chamber (p < 0.05).
Discussion and conclusion: The effects of geniposidic acid on protecting vascular endothelium and reversing plaque formation in an atherosclerotic model were demonstrated.