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J Agric Food Chem. 2005 Mar 23;53(6):2015-21.

Dietary wine phenolics catechin, quercetin, and resveratrol efficiently protect hypercholesterolemic hamsters against aortic fatty streak accumulation.

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  • 1Equipe d'Accueil 3762, Nutrition & Aliment, Université Montpellier 2, 34095 Montpellier, France.


The effects of the phenolic compounds catechin (Cat), quercetin (Qer), and resveratrol (Res) present in red wine on early atherosclerosis were studied in hamsters. Hamsters (n = 32) were divided into 4 groups of 8 and fed an atherogenic diet for 12 weeks. They received by force-feeding 7.14 mL/(kg of body Cat, Qer, or Res in water [2.856 mg/(kg of body for Cat and 0.1428 mg/(kg of body wt.dday) for Qer and Res], mimicking a moderate consumption of alcohol-free red wine (equivalent to that supplied by the consumption of about two glasses of red wine per meal for a 70 kg human), or water as control. Plasma cholesterol concentration was lower in groups that consumed phenolics than in controls. The increase in plasma apolipoprotein (Apo) A1 concentration was mainly due to Cat (26%) and Qer (22%) and to a lesser extent, but nonsignificantly, Res (19%). Apo-B was not affected. Plasma antioxidant capacity was not improved, and there was no sparing effect on plasma vitamins A and E. Plasma iron and copper concentrations were not modified nor were liver super oxide dismutase and catalase activities. A sparing effect of Qer on liver glutathione peroxidase activity appeared, whereas Cat and Res exhibited a smaller effect. Aortic fatty streak area was significantly reduced in the groups receiving Cat (84%) or Qer (80%) or Res (76%) in comparison with the controls. These findings demonstrate that catechin, quercetin, and resveratrol at nutritional doses prevent the development of atherosclerosis through several indirect mechanisms.

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