Influence of a low-carbohydrate diet on endothelial microvesicles in overweight women

Antony L. Wekesa, Lorna M. Doyle, Doreen Fitzmaurice, Orla O'Donovan, John P. Phelan, Mark D. Ross, Keith S. Cross, Michael Harrison

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12 Citations (Scopus)


Low-carbohydrate diets (LCD) are increasing in popularity, but their effect on vascular health has been questioned. Endothelial microvesicles (EMV) are membrane-derived vesicles with the potential to act as a sensitive prognostic biomarker of vascular health and endothelial function. The aim of this study was to examine the influence of a LCD on EMV and other endothelial biomarkers of protein origin. Twenty-four overweight women (age, 48.4 ± 0.6 years; height, 1.60 ± 0.07 m; body mass, 76.5 ± 9.1 kg; body mass index, 28.1 ± 2.7 kg·m(-2); waist circumference, 84.1 ± 7.4 cm; mean ± standard deviation) were randomised to either 24 weeks on their normal diet (ND) or a LCD, after which they crossed over to 24 weeks on the alternative diet. Participants were assisted in reducing carbohydrate intake, but not below 40 g·day(-1). Body composition and endothelial biomarkers were assessed at the crossover point and at the end of the study. Daily carbohydrate intake (87 ± 7 versus 179 ± 11 g) and the percentage of energy derived from carbohydrate (29% versus 44%) were lower (p < 0.05) on the LCD compared to the ND, but absolute fat and saturated fat intake were unchanged. Body mass and waist circumference were 3.7 ± 0.8 kg and 3.5 ± 1.0 cm lower (p < 0.05), respectively, after the LCD compared with the ND phases. CD31(+)CD41(-)EMV, soluble (s) thrombomodulin, sE-selectin, sP-selectin, serum amyloid A and C-reactive protein were lower (p < 0.05) after the LCD compared to the ND, but serum lipids and apolipoproteins were not different. EMV along with a range of endothelial and inflammatory biomarkers are reduced by a LCD that involves modest weight loss.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)522-527
Number of pages6
JournalApplied physiology, nutrition, and metabolism = Physiologie appliquee, nutrition et metabolisme
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 01 May 2016


  • biomarqueurs endothéliaux
  • endothelial biomarkers
  • microparticles
  • microparticules
  • perte de poids
  • santé vasculaire
  • vascular health
  • weight loss


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