Lipoic acid prevents hypertension, hyperglycemia, and the increase in heart mitochondrial superoxide production.


Midaoui AE, Elimadi A, Wu L, Haddad PS, de Champlain J.




Am J Hypertens


The present study was designed to investigate whether the effects of dietary supplementation with alpha-lipoic acid could prevent the increase in mitochondrial superoxide production in the heart as well as the enhanced formation of advanced glycation end-products (AGE) that are associated with the development of hypertension and insulin resistance in chronically glucose-fed rats. Sprague Dawley rats were either given or not given a 10% D-glucose solution to drink during 4 weeks, combined either with a normal chow diet or with alpha-lipoic acid supplemented diet. The oxidative stress was evaluated by measuring the heart mitochondrial superoxide production using the lucigenin chemiluminescence method. The formation of AGE was also assessed in plasma and aorta. Chronic administration of glucose resulted in a 29% increase in blood pressure, 30% increase in glycemia, 286% increase in insulinemia, and 408% increase in insulin resistance index. Chronic glucose feeding also resulted in a 22% greater mitochondrial superoxide anion production in heart and in an increase of 63% in AGE content in aorta. Increases in blood pressure, aorta AGE content and heart mitochondrial superoxide production were prevented in the rats fed glucose supplemented with lipoic acid. The simultaneous treatment with lipoic acid also attenuated the rise in insulin levels as well as in insulin resistance in the glucose fed rats. These findings demonstrate that alpha-lipoic acid supplementation prevents development of hypertension and hyperglycemia, presumably through its antioxidative properties, as reflected by prevention of an increase in heart mitochondrial superoxide anion production and in AGE formation in the aorta of chronically glucose treated rats.