Antioxidant treatment seems to reduce the development of restenosis after percutaneous transluminal angioplasty. In this study, the effect of Nicanartine, a new antioxidant drug with both antiproliferative and lipid-lowering properties, on the proliferative and inflammatory response after balloon angioplasty was investigated in a rabbit model of restenosis.
To induce pre-interventional plaques in the common carotid artery of 48 New Zealand White rabbits, electrostimulation was carried out for 28 days. After a break of 7 days, balloon angioplasty was performed in 36 animals, of which 18 received Nicanartine at a dose of 120 mg/kg body weight; the other 18 served as a control group. The vessels were excised by day 7 and 28 after balloon angioplasty and examined for intimal plaque size, macrophage content and proliferative activity. Bromodeoxyuridine labeling was used to determine proliferating cells in the dilated segment; macrophages were detected using the RAM-11 antibody.
In the Nicanartine-treated group, immunohistological quantification 7 days after intervention showed a statistically significant (P < 0.05) reduction of both cells undergoing DNA synthesis (1.6 ± 1.4% versus 3.7 ± 2.2%) and intimal macrophages (0.7 ± 1.2% versus 1.3 ± 0.6%). Twenty-eight days after balloon angioplasty, proliferative activity in both groups was decreased to a level comparable to the non-dilated control groups. A clear trend towards smaller plaques could be seen in the Nicanartine group (0.146 ± 0.077 mm2 versus 0.255 ± 0.174 mm2). Total cholesterol levels did not differ significantly between the groups.
Under treatment with Nicanartine a clear reduction in the proliferative and inflammatory response after balloon angioplasty was observed. Antioxidant treatment, especially with compounds having antiproliferative and lipid-lowering properties, appears to be an effective secondary preventive strategy after interventional treatment in patients with coronary artery disease.
© 1998 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.