Fernandez ML, Thomas MS, Lemos BS, DiMarco DM, Missimer A, Melough M, Chun OK, Murillo AG, Alyousef H, Medina-Vera I
Telomerase Activator 65 (TA-65), a compound extracted from Astragalus membranaceus has been used in Chinese traditional medicine for extending life span. Scarce information exists on the effects of TA-65 on parameters of metabolic syndrome (MetS).
We recruited 40 patients with MetS to determine the effects of TA-65 on dyslipidemias, hypertension, and oxidative stress in this at-risk population. The study was a double-blind, randomized crossover design in which patients were allocated to consume either 16 mg daily of a TA-65 supplement or a placebo for 12 weeks. Following a 3-week washout, participants were allocated to the alternate treatment for an additional 12 weeks. Anthropometric and biological markers were measured at the end of each treatment. Plasma lipids, glucose, C-reactive protein (CRP), liver enzymes, and glycosylated hemoglobin were measured using a Cobas c-111. Inflammatory cytokines were measured by Luminex technology and markers of oxidative stress by use of spectroscopy.
Compared to the placebo period, HDL cholesterol (HDL-C) was higher while body mass index, waist circumference, and the LDL/HDL ratio were lower (p < 0.05) during TA-65 treatment. In addition, plasma tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) was lower during the TA-65 period (p< 0.05). Positive correlations were observed in changes between the placebo and the TA-65 periods in HDL-C and CRP (r = -0.511, p < 0.01), alanine aminotransferase (r = -0.61, p < 0.001) and TNF-α (r = -0.550, p < 0.001) suggesting that the favorable changes observed in HDL were associated with decreases in inflammation.
TA-65 improved key markers of cardiovascular disease risk, which were also associated with reductions in inflammation.
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