Investigation of the Influence of Gender on Cardiovascular Function

Investigation of the Influence of Gender on Cardiovascular Function and Inflammation

Sponsors

Lead Sponsor: Queen Mary University of London

Source Queen Mary University of London
Brief Summary

Inflammation is a key initiating and damaging factor in many illnesses including infection, arthritis and cancer but also of particular relevance to this study in diseases of the heart and blood vessels (i.e. cardiovascular disease). Much evidence now exists demonstrating that male sex increases ones risk of cardiovascular disease. More recent evidence demonstrates that inflammatory responses in females appear to dampened in comparison to age matched males. Since inflammation is thought to be a key initiating phenomenon in many cardiovascular disease states the investigators will examine the differences in acute inflammatory responses between the sexes in healthy volunteers and the impact this has on the function of blood vessels.

Detailed Description

We now know that one of the earliest events involved in precipitating disease of the heart and blood vessels is the phenomenon of inflammation and that this inflammation is a key process involved in dampening the protective nature of the inner lining (the endothelium) of the blood vessel wall, called endothelial dysfunction. In healthy arteries the endothelium releases a number of factors that maintain the health of the blood vessel. These factors act to keep the blood vessel in an open and dilated state and prevent the furring up of the vessel by actively inhibiting the cell components of the blood from collecting at the endothelium and blocking the flow of blood through the artery. Recent research in animals has demonstrated that one of the key components of inflammation i.e. the attraction of white cells, is reduced in females compared to males and that this is due to a reduced expression of key proteins called 'adhesion molecules', an in particular a molecule called P-selectin, on the endothelium. We now wish to determine whether similar differences in white cell attraction and adhesion molecules exist between the sexes in humans and whether these differences might underlie differences in endothelial function. To investigate this possibility we will conduct a study in two parts, using well validated models of acute inflammation in healthy volunteers. Part 1 To determine whether responses to inflammation differ between sexes in part 1 we will use a cantharidin-induced model of acute inflammation. Previous published studies have shown when cantharidin is applied to the skin it causes acantholysis and blister formation. It is a safe, reproducible technique with no permanent scarring or ill-effects. We will study the effects on inflammatory responses by measuring the levels of cells and inflammatory mediators in blister fluids, urine and plasma. Participants will given two blisters that will be harvested at 24 hours (acute phase) and 72 hours (resolution phase) after cantharidin application. The effects of inflammation on blood vessels will also be studied through non invasive blood pressure measurements. Part 2 To determine whether susceptibility to inflammation-induced endothelial dysfunction is distinct between the sexes in part 2 we will use typhoid vaccine to induce mild inflammation throughout the body including the blood vessels. Previous published studies have shown that vaccination induces an acute inflammation that results in a temporary (reversed within 48h) dysfunction of the endothelium that can be measured using a range of non-invasive techniques called ultrasound flow-mediated dilatation and pulse wave velocity. We will use these techniques together with biochemical measurements to determine possible associations of endothelial dysfunction with specific inflammatory factors. In particular we will investigate the possibility that differences in the expression of the adhesion molecule P-selectin might have a role to play in differences between the sexes.

Overall Status Completed
Start Date 2012-03-01
Completion Date 2017-01-01
Primary Completion Date 2016-12-01
Phase Early Phase 1
Study Type Interventional
Primary Outcome
Measure Time Frame
Comparison change in blister fluid total and differential leukocyte numbers (Part 1) 24, 72 h
Flow-mediated dilatation (Part 2) 0, 24, 48 h
Secondary Outcome
Measure Time Frame
Blood pressure (Part 1) 0, 48, 72 h
Platelet reactivity (Part 2) 0, 24 and 48h
Platelet activation (Part 2) 0,24 and 48h
Arterial stiffness (Part 2) 0, 24 and 48h
Inflammatory cell expression (Part 1 and 2) 0, 48, 72h part 1, 0, 24 and 48h part 2
Blood inflammatory molecule expression (Part 1 and 2) 0, 48, 72 h part 1, 0, 24 and 48h part 2,
Enrollment 56
Condition
Intervention

Intervention Type: Biological

Intervention Name: Typhoid vaccine

Description: The typhoid vaccine is composed of purified polysaccharide from S. typhi capsule 25 micrograms contained in 0.5 ml solution

Other Name: Typhim Vi®

Intervention Type: Drug

Intervention Name: Cantharidin

Description: 0.1% cantharidin solution in acetone from 0.7% stock solution of cantharone is prepared and applied immediately. 10 μl of cantharidin per disc.

Other Name: Cantharidin, cantharone 0.1%

Eligibility

Criteria:

Inclusion Criteria: Healthy subjects aged 18-45 who have volunteered themselves and are willing to sign the consent form. Exclusion Criteria: 1. Healthy subjects unwilling to consent 2. History of hypertension, diabetes or hypertensive on BP measurement 3. Pregnant, or any possibility that a subject may be pregnant unless in the latter case a pregnancy test is performed with a negative result 4. History of any serious illnesses, including recent infections or trauma 5. Subjects taking systemic medication (other than the oral contraceptive pill) 6. Subjects with self-reported use of mouthwash or tongue scrapes 7. Subjects with recent or current antibiotic use 8. Subjects with a history, or recent treatment of (within last 3 months) of any oral condition (excluding caries), including gingivitis, periodontitis and halitosis. 9. Subjects that have recently participated (preceding 3 months) in any clinical studies involving administration of an inflammogen.

Gender:

All

Minimum Age:

18 Years

Maximum Age:

45 Years

Healthy Volunteers:

Accepts Healthy Volunteers

Overall Official
Last Name Role Affiliation
Amrita Ahluwalia, BSC PhD Principal Investigator Queen Mary University of London
Location
Facility: William Harvey Heart Centre, Barts & The London Medical School
Location Countries

United Kingdom

Verification Date

2017-06-01

Responsible Party

Type: Principal Investigator

Investigator Affiliation: Queen Mary University of London

Investigator Full Name: Amrita Ahluwalia

Investigator Title: Professor of Vascular Pharmacology

Keywords
Has Expanded Access No
Number Of Arms 4
Arm Group

Label: Part 1 Male

Type: Experimental

Description: 16 healthy male volunteers will be recruited. Primary and secondary outcome measures will be made on day 1, 3 and 4. At 24 and 72 hours prior to outcome measures on day 3 a cantharidin-soaked 1cm2 filter paper disc will be applied to participants forearm or back on leg for blister formation. Blister fluids will be harvested on day 3.

Label: Part 1 Female

Type: Experimental

Description: 16 healthy female volunteers will be recruited. Primary and secondary outcome measures will be made on day 1, 3 and 4. At 24 and 72 hours prior to outcome measures on day 3 a cantharidin-soaked 1cm2 filter paper disc will be applied to participants forearm or back on leg for blister formation. Blister fluids will be harvested on day 3.

Label: Part 2 Male

Type: Experimental

Description: 12 healthy male volunteers will be recruited. Primary and secondary outcome measures will be made on day 0, 1 and 2. At 8 hours prior to outcome measures on day 1 intra-muscular typhoid vaccine will be administered.

Label: Part 2 Female

Type: Experimental

Description: 12 healthy female volunteers will be recruited. Primary and secondary outcome measures will be made on day 0, 1 and 2. At 8 hours prior to outcome measures on day 1 intra-muscular typhoid vaccine will be administered.

Study Design Info

Allocation: Non-Randomized

Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment

Primary Purpose: Basic Science

Masking: None (Open Label)

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