Nicotinamide riboside rescues angiotensin II-induced cerebral small vessel disease in mice

CNS Neurosci Ther. 2020 Apr;26(4):438-447. doi: 10.1111/cns.13276. Epub 2020 Jan 14.


Aims: Hypertension is a leading cause of cerebral small vessel disease (CSVD). Currently, treatments for CSVD are limited. Nicotinamide riboside (NR) can protect against vascular injury and cognitive impairment in neurodegenerative diseases. In this study, the protective effects of NR against angiotensin - (Ang -)-induced CSVD were evaluated.

Methods: To explore the effects of NR in CSVD, C57BL/6 mice were infused with Ang -, and NR was added to the food of the mice for 28 days. Then, short-term memory, blood-brain barrier (BBB) integrity, and endothelial function were detected. Arteriole injury and glial activation were also evaluated.

Results: Our data showed that mice infused with Ang - exhibited decreased short-term memory function and BBB leakage due to decreased claudin-5 expression and increased caveolae-mediated endocytosis after 28 days. Furthermore, Ang - decreased the expression of α-smooth muscle actin (α-SMA) and increased the expression of proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA) in arterioles and decreased the expression of neurofilament 200 (NF200) and myelin basic protein (MBP) in the white matter. These CSVD-related damages induced by Ang - were inhibited by NR administration. Moreover, NR administration significantly reduced glial activation around the vessels.

Conclusion: Our results indicated that NR administration alleviated Ang --induced CSVD by protecting BBB integrity, vascular remodeling, neuroinflammation, and white matter injury (WMI)-associated cognitive impairment.

Keywords: angiotensin -; arterioles; blood-brain barrier; cerebral small vessel disease; cognitive impairment; inflammation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Angiotensin II / toxicity*
  • Animals
  • Cerebral Small Vessel Diseases / chemically induced*
  • Cerebral Small Vessel Diseases / drug therapy*
  • Cerebral Small Vessel Diseases / pathology
  • Infusion Pumps, Implantable
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Niacinamide / administration & dosage
  • Niacinamide / analogs & derivatives*
  • Pyridinium Compounds / administration & dosage*


  • Pyridinium Compounds
  • nicotinamide-beta-riboside
  • Angiotensin II
  • Niacinamide