Home > Riviste > Minerva Cardioangiologica > Fascicoli precedenti > Minerva Cardioangiologica 2017 February;65(1) > Minerva Cardioangiologica 2017 February;65(1):24-31



Publication history
Per citare questo articolo


Rivista sulle Malattie del Cuore e dei Vasi

Official Journal of the Italian Society of Angiology and Vascular Pathology
Indexed/Abstracted in: EMBASE, PubMed/MEDLINE, Science Citation Index Expanded (SciSearch), Scopus
Impact Factor 0,695




Minerva Cardioangiologica 2017 February;65(1):24-31

DOI: 10.23736/S0026-4725.16.04008-1


lingua: Inglese

Pycnogenol® and Centella asiatica to prevent asymptomatic atherosclerosis progression in clinical events

Gianni BELCARO 1, Mark DUGALL 1, Edmondo IPPOLITO 2, Morio HOSOI 1, Umberto CORNELLI 1, Andrea LEDDA 1, Marco SCOCCIANTI 1, Maria R. CESARONE 1, Luciano PELLEGRINI 1, Roberta LUZZI 1, Marcello CORSI 1, Beatrice FERAGALLI 1

1 Irvine3 Labs, Department of Medical, Oral and Biotechnological Sciences, “G. D’Annunzio” University, Pescara, Italy; 2 Department of Vascular Surgery, University of Milan, Milan, Italy


BACKGROUND: The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of the nutritional supplements Pycnogenol® and Centella asiatica (CA) on atherosclerosis progression in low-risk, asymptomatic subjects with carotid or femoral stenosing plaques.
METHODS: The study included subjects aged 45-60 with stenosing atherosclerotic plaques (50-60%) in at least one carotid or common femoral bifurcation. Subjects were allocated into 3 groups. In Group 1 (controls), management was based on education, exercise, diet and lifestyle changes. This same management plan was used in the other two groups: Group 2 used Pycnogenol® (100 mg/day), while Group 3 used Pycnogenol® 100 mg/day plus CA (100 mg/day). The follow-up lasted 4 years. Plaque progression was assessed using the ultrasonic arterial score based on arterial wall morphology, considering plaque characteristics and the number of subjects that had cardiovascular events. Oxidative stress was also measured.
RESULTS: Of the 413 individuals that were admitted, 391 individuals completed 4 years. Group distribution was comparable. The rate of progression of ultrasound arterial score was significantly lower in the two supplement groups (P<0.05) in comparison with controls suggesting a beneficial effect of Pycnogenol® with a significant difference in favor of the combination (P<0.05). There was a reduction in plaques progression in the supplement groups with the best effects obtained by the combination, considering maximum plaque thickness and length and echogenicity (grey scale median) (P<0.05). Plaques became generally dense (more echogenic) achieving a mixed echogenicity. The occurrence of anginal events was less than 3% in the two supplement groups (in comparison with 6.25% in controls) (P<0.05) with the best results obtained by the combination (P<0.05). The occurrence in myocardial infarctions was significantly lower for the combination (P<0.05). Minor transient ischemic attacks were also less frequent with the supplements with the best results observed with the combination (P<0.05). Events in controls — requiring hospital admission — were globally seen in 16.4% of subjects (minor events) in comparison with 8.9% of subjects using Pycnogenol® and only 3.3% of patients using the combination. At 4 years, oxidative stress in the supplement groups was lower than in controls (P<0.05, with no significant difference between groups 2 and 3).
CONCLUSIONS: Pycnogenol® and the combination of Pycnogenol® plus CA reduce the progression of arterial plaques and the progression to clinical stages. The reduction in plaques and clinical progression was associated with a reduction in oxidative stress. The results justify a larger study to define the efficacy of the combination of Pycnogenol® plus CA as a prophylaxis in preclinical atherosclerosis.

KEY WORDS: Atherosclerosis - Oxidative stress - Dietary supplements - Pycnogenol - Centella asiatica extract

inizio pagina

Publication History

Issue published online: November 30, 2016
Article first published online: October 27, 2015
Manuscript accepted: October 23, 2015
Manuscript received: September 29, 2015

Per citare questo articolo

Belcaro G, Dugall M, Ippolito E, Hosoi M, Cornelli U, Ledda A, et al. Pycnogenol® and Centella asiatica to prevent asymptomatic atherosclerosis progression in clinical events. Minerva Cardioangiol 2017;65:24-31. DOI: 10.23736/S0026-4725.16.04008-1

Corresponding author e-mail