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Modified Citrus Pectin Protects Against Vascular Hardening
Date:11/20/2012

SANTA ROSA, Calif., Nov. 20, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Cardiovascular disease will kill nearly 2.5 million people in the United States this year, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Over time, inflammation, collagen deposition and scar tissue formation can cause blood vessels to stiffen, a process called vascular fibrosis. Though researchers have known that the hormone aldosterone (Aldo) plays a role in this process, the precise mechanisms have been poorly understood.

Now, an international study published in Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology: Journal of the American Heart Association is providing new insights into cardiovascular disease. Particularly significant, the study illuminates how Aldo and the protein galectin-3 jointly contribute to vascular remodeling and congestive heart failure by fueling the processes of inflammation, fibrosis and collagen deposition.

The findings indicate that galectin-3 is required for inflammatory and fibrotic responses to Aldo, suggesting a key role for galectin-3 in vascular fibrosis.  Equally important, the study proves that modified citrus pectin (MCP), a preparation derived from the pith of citrus peels, prevents these effects by binding to galectin-3 and controlling Aldo induced elevated galectin-3 levels.

MCP is a form of citrus pectin modified to a specific molecular weight and structure for enhanced absorption and bioactivity. Regular pectin goes through the gastrointestinal tract unabsorbed, whereas MCP is readily absorbed and has been demonstrated in published research to perform multiple beneficial functions. MCP's small molecular weight and unique structure allow it to bind and block excess galectin-3 throughout the body. Elevated serum galectin-3 has been linked to high mortality rates in heart failure and
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SOURCE Better Health Publishing
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