Cardiovascular and inflammatory effects of simvastatin therapy in patients with COPD

a randomized controlled trial

Michelle E. John, John R. Cockcroft, Tricia M. McKeever, William R. Coward, Dennis J. Shale, Simon R. Johnson, Jim G. Thornton, Timothy W. Harrison, Alan J. Knox, Charlotte E. Bolton*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

17 Citations (Scopus)
7 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Background: There is excess cardiovascular mortality in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Aortic stiffness, an independent predictor of cardiovascular risk, and systemic and airway inflammation are increased in patients with the disease. Stations modulate aortic stiffness and have anti-inflammatory properties. A proof-of-principle, double-blind, randomized trial determined if 6 weeks of simvastatin 20 mg once daily reduced aortic stiffness and systemic and airway inflammation in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Methods: Stable patients (n=70) were randomized to simvastatin (active) or placebo. Pre-treatment and post-treatment aortic stiffness, blood pressure, spirometry, and circulating and airway inflammatory mediators and lipids were measured. A predefined subgroup analysis was performed where baseline aortic pulse wave velocity (PWV) was >10 m/sec. Results: Total cholesterol dropped in the active group. There was no significant change in aortic PWV between the active group and the placebo group (-0.7 m/sec, P=0.24). In those with aortic stiffness > 10 m/sec (n=22), aortic PWV improved in the active group compared with the placebo group (-2.8 m/sec, P=0.03). Neither systemic nor airway inflammatory markers changed. Conclusion: There was a nonsignifcant improvement in aortic PWV in those taking simvastatin 20 mg compared with placebo, but in those with higher baseline aortic stiffness (a higher risk group) a significant and clinically relevant reduction in PWV was shown.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)211-221
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of COPD
Volume10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 29 Jan 2015
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Copyright the Author(s) 2015. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.

Keywords

  • Arterial stiffness
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
  • Statins

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