Fruit from the Prunus mume tree is a traditional food in Japan. Recently, bainiku-ekisu, an infused juice concentrate of Japanese Prunus mume, is attracting attention as a health promoting supplement. Angiotensin II (Ang II) plays a central role in development of hypertension. It has been reported that bainiku-ekisu treatment attenuates the growth-promoting signaling induced by Ang II in vascular smooth muscle cells. However, whether bainiku-ekisu has any effect on an animal model of hypertension remains unknown. Therefore, this study was designed to explore the potential anti-hypertensive benefit of bainiku-ekisu utilizing a mouse model of hypertension with Ang II infusion. Male C57BL/6 mice were infused with Ang II for 2 weeks and given 0.1% bainiku-ekisu containing water or normal water for 2 weeks with blood pressure evaluation. After 2 weeks, mice were euthanized, and the aortas were collected for evaluation of remodeling. Aortic medial hypertrophy was observed in control mice after Ang II infusion, which was attenuated in bainiku-ekisu group with Ang II infusion. Bainiku-ekisu further attenuated aortic induction of collagen producing cells and immune cell infiltration. Development of hypertension induced by Ang II was also prevented by bainiku-ekisu. Echocardiograph indicated protection of Ang II-induced cardiac hypertrophy by bainiku-ekisu. In vascular fibroblasts, bainiku-ekisu attenuated vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 induction, an endoplasmic reticulum stress marker, inositol requiring enzyme-1α phosphorylation, and enhancement in glucose consumption in response to Ang II. In conclusion, Bainiku-ekisu prevented Ang II-induced hypertension and inflammatory vascular remodeling. Potential cardiovascular health benefit to taking bainiku-ekisu should be further studied.
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We thank Dr. Katherine J Elliott for critical comments.
This work was supported by the National Institutes of Health Grant (RO1HL128324 to SE) and a research gift fund from Kobayashi Pharmaceutical Japan.
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The authors declare no competing interests.
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Okuno, K., Torimoto, K., Kuroda, R. et al. Infused juice concentrate of Japanese plum Prunus mume attenuates inflammatory vascular remodeling in a mouse model of hypertension induced by angiotensin II. Hypertens Res 46, 1923–1933 (2023). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41440-023-01332-9
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