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Planta Med. 2013 Jun;79(9):731-6. doi: 10.1055/s-0032-1328551. Epub 2013 May 22.

Icariin attenuates the enhanced prothrombotic state in atherosclerotic rabbits independently of its lipid-lowering effects.

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Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, The First Affiliated Hospital of Medical School, Xi'an Jiaotong University, Shaanxi, China.


Icariin is a major active component isolated from the traditional Chinese herb Epimedium brevicornum, with a wide range of pharmacological and biological activities. In this paper, we investigated the effects of icariin on hyperlipidemia, and further evaluated whether icariin could improve unfavorable hemorheological parameters, attenuate platelet activation and facilitate the balance between plasmic plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 and tissue-type plasminogen activator activities in rabbits fed a high-cholesterol diet. Icariin reduced the levels of serum total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, as well as the atherosclerotic burden. In addition, this compound has been found to improve the imbalance between plasmic plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 and tissue-type plasminogen activator activities, reduce platelet adhesiveness and aggregation and modulate unfavorable hemorheological variables in hypercholesterolemia. In conclusion, icariin has lipid-lowering effects and may be used in the treatment and prevention of thrombosis in the atherosclerotic process.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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