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Chin J Integr Med. 2009 Aug;15(4):266-71. doi: 10.1007/s11655-009-0266-x. Epub 2009 Aug 18.

Effects of Xuezhikang and pravastatin on circulating endothelial progenitor cells in patients with essential hypertension.

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  • 1The First Affiliated Hospital of Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing, 400016, China.



To investigate the impacts of Xuezhikang (XZK) or pravastatin combined with antihypertensive drugs on circulating endothelial progenitor cells (CEPCs) in essential hypertensive (EH) patients.


Eighty-eight EH patients were enrolled into the study and randomly assigned to the antihypertensive drug treatment group (ATH group, 29 cases), the pravastatin treatment group (PRA group, 29 cases) and the Xuezhikang treatment group (XZK group, 30 cases). Patients in the 3 groups were treated with routine antihypertensive drugs. In addition, pravastatin and Xuezhikang were given to the patients in the PRA group and XZK group, respectively. After an eight-week treatment, CEPCs were counted using a laser scanning confocal microscope, and their proliferation function was evaluated by the MTT colorimetric assay and the adherent cell number was counted to estimate the adhesion function.


After the treatment, CEPCs in the PRA group (116.60+/-5.70) and XZK group (114.40+/-6.55) was significantly higher than that in the ATH group (88.00+/-6.32, P<0.01). CEPCs proliferation capability and the adhesion function in the PRA group (0.406+/-0.016, 33.60+/-4.26) and XZK group (0.415+/-0.018, 34.30+/-3.77) were obviously superior to those in the ATH group (0.333+/-0.021, P<0.01; 23.30+/-3.19, P<0.01). No significant difference was found between the pravastatin group and the XZK group.


Combined use of XZK or pravastatin with the anti-hypertensive therapy could increase the CEPCs number and improve their function in EH patients with the blood pressure controlled by antihypertensive drugs, leading to benefits independent of pressure-lowering effects.

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