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Minerva Medica 2021 May 10

DOI: 10.23736/S0026-4806.21.07527-3


language: English

Gut microbiota and cardiovascular diseases axis: a review

Dora C. MOLDOVAN 1, 2, Abdulrahman ISMAIEL 1, 3 , Sharmila FAGOONEE 4, Rinaldo PELLICANO 5, Ludovico ABENAVOLI 6, Dan L. DUMITRASCU 1, 3

1 Iuliu Hatieganu University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Cluj-Napoca, Romania; 2 Department of Internal Medicine, Regional Institute of Gastroenterology and Hepatology O. Fodor, Cluj-Napoca, Romania; 3 2nd Department of Internal Medicine, Cluj-Napoca, Romania; 4 Institute of Biostructure and Bioimaging, National Research Council, Molecular Biotechnology Center, Turin, Italy; 5 Unit of Gastroenterology, Molinette-SGAS Hospital, Città della Salute e della Scienza, Turin, Italy; 6 Department of Health Sciences, University Magna Graecia, Catanzaro, Italy


Gut microbiota, a term that includes microorganisms present in the gastrointestinal tract, has become very attractive lately due to its propensity to act as a virtual organ with endocrine functions, generating various bio-active metabolites, while playing an important role in human health and diseases, including cardiovascular diseases (CVDs). Focusing on the latter field, gastrointestinal dysbiosis, that is the imbalance in the gut microbiota composition, has been linked to various pathologies such as hypertension, atherosclerosis, myocardial infarction and heart failure. Several pathways were demonstrated to play a role in the complex and intertwined association between the gut microbiota and host, including metabolic endotoxemia, alteration of pattern recognition receptors and short-chain fatty acids, uremic toxins, bile acids and trimethylamine-N-oxide levels, leading to CVDs. Understanding these pathways can allow to identifying metabolites that could be useful predictors for detecting incipient CVDs stages and potential therapeutic targets. In this review, we summarize the pathways associating the gut microbiota with CVDs.

KEY WORDS: Diet; Cardiovascular events; Liver; Steatosis; Dysbiosis

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