Background: We have recently shown that Calanus oil, which is extracted from the marine copepod Calanus finmarchicus, reduces fat deposition, suppresses adipose tissue inflammation and improves insulin sensitivity in high fat-fed rodents. This study expands upon our previous observations by examining whether dietary supplementation with Calanus oil could antagonize angiotensin II (Ang II)-induced hypertension and ventricular remodeling in mice given a high fat diet (HFD).
Methods: C57BL/6J mice were initially subjected to 8 weeks of HFD with or without 2% (w/w) Calanus oil. Thereafter, animals within each group were randomized for the administration of either Ang II (1µg/kg/min) or saline for another two weeks, while still on the same dietary regimen.
Results: Ang II caused a marked decline in body and organ weights in mice receiving non-supplemented HFD, a response which was clearly attenuated in mice receiving Calanus oil supplementation. Furthermore, Ang II-induced elevation in blood pressure was also attenuated in the Calanus oil-supplemented group. As expected, infusion of Ang II produced hypertrophy and up-regulation of marker genes (mRNA level) of both hypertrophy and fibrosis in cardiac muscle, but this response was unaffected by dietary Calanus oil. Fibrosis and inflammation were up-regulated also in the aorta following Ang II infusion. However, the inflammatory response was blocked by Calanus oil supplementation. A final, and unexpected, finding was that dietary intake of Calanus oil caused a robust increase in the level of O-GlcNAcylation in cardiac tissue.
Conclusion: These results suggest that dietary intake of oil from the marine copepod Calanus finmarchicus could be a beneficial addition to conventional hypertension treatment. The compound attenuates inflammation and the severe metabolic stress caused by Ang II infusion. Although the present study suggests that the anti-hypertensive effect of the oil (or its n-3 PUFAs constituents) is related to its anti-inflammatory action in the vessel wall, other mechanisms such as interaction with intracellular calcium mechanisms or a direct antagonistic effect on Ang II receptors should be examined.
Keywords: Hypertension; Inflammation; Marine oil; Obesity; Protein O-GlcNAcylation.
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