Association of impaired endothelial glycocalyx with arterial stiffness, coronary microcirculatory dysfunction, and abnormal myocardial deformation in untreated hypertensives

J Clin Hypertens (Greenwich). 2018 Apr;20(4):672-679. doi: 10.1111/jch.13236. Epub 2018 Mar 2.


We investigated the association of endothelial glycocalyx damage with arterial stiffness, impairment of coronary microcirculatory function, and LV myocardial deformation in 320 untreated hypertensives and 160 controls. We measured perfused boundary region (PBR) of the sublingual microvessels, a marker inversely related with glycocalyx thickness, coronary flow reserve (CFR), and Global Longitudinal strain (GLS) by echocardiography, pulse wave velocity (PWV), and central systolic blood pressure (cSBP). Hypertensives had higher PBR, PWV cSBP, and lower CFR and GLS than controls (P < .05). In hypertensives, increased PBR was associated with increased cSBP, PWV, and decreased CFR and GLS after adjustment for age, sex, BMI, smoking LV mass, heart rate, hyperlipidemia, and office SBP (P < .05). PBR had an additive value to PWV, CFR, and office SBP for the prediction of abnormal GLS (x2 = 2.4-3.8, P for change = .03). Endothelial glycocalyx is impaired in untreated hypertensives and is related to arterial stiffness, coronary, and myocardial dysfunction.

Keywords: arterial stiffness; endothelial glycocalyx; longitudinal strain; pulse wave velocity.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Coronary Vessels / physiopathology*
  • Female
  • Glycocalyx / metabolism*
  • Heart Diseases / physiopathology*
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / complications*
  • Hypertension / physiopathology
  • Male
  • Microcirculation
  • Middle Aged
  • Vascular Stiffness