Effects of Flavonoid-Rich Beverages on Prostacyclin Synthesis in Humans and Human Aortic Endothelial Cells: Association with Ex Vivo Platelet Function

John A. Polagruto, Derek D. Schramm, Janice F. Wang-Polagruto, Luke Lee, Carl L Keen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

35 Scopus citations


Diets rich in flavonoids have been associated with reduced risk for cardiovascular disease. This may be due, in part, to flavonoid-induced alterations in eicosanoid synthesis. Our objective was to identify plant-derived beverages that alter synthesis of prostacyclin in cultured human aortic endothelial cells (HAEC), and to determine if these beverages could alter in vivo 6-keto-prostaglandin F (a stable metabolite of prostacyclin) synthesis and platelet function. HAEC were treated with nine commonly consumed beverages to determine their effects on prostacyclin synthesis under acute and chronic treatment regimens. Orange, purple grape, and pomegranate juices and coffee (6-9 mL/kg) were then provided to 28 fasted, healthy adult subjects (eight men and 20 women) on five separate days. Plasma samples were collected immediately following juice consumption (baseline), and at 2 and 6 hours post-consumption. On an acute basis, administration of HAEC with pomegranate juice increased media prostacyclin. Chronic exposure to purple grape and pomegranate juice increased aortic endothelial cell prostacyclin synthesis (38% and 61%, respectively; P < .05). The consumption of purple grape, pomegranate, and orange juice prolonged epinephrine/collagen-induced clotting time (P < .05). Purple grape juice increased plasma 6-keto-prostaglandin F (20%; P < .05) at 2 hours; pomegranate and orange juice did not significantly influence plasma prostacyclin concentrations. Consistent with the in vitro data, coffee consumption did not influence clotting time or plasma prostacyclin concentrations. These results indicate that the HAEC model system can provide a qualitative means to screen food and food-derived products for biologic activity related to cardiovascular health.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)301-308
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Medicinal Food
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2003



  • Coffee
  • Eicosanoids
  • Endothelial cell
  • Flavanol
  • Flavonoid
  • Grape juice
  • Human
  • Platelet activity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Food Science

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