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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2015, Article ID 260530, 7 pages
Research Article

Inhibitory Effect of a French Maritime Pine Bark Extract-Based Nutritional Supplement on TNF-α-Induced Inflammation and Oxidative Stress in Human Coronary Artery Endothelial Cells

1Molecular Biosciences Team, School of Life Sciences, University of Technology Sydney, Broadway, NSW, Australia
2Department of Endocrinology, Dezhou People’s Hospital, Shandong, China
3Department of Clinical Medicine, Macquarie University, Sydney, NSW 2109, Australia
4Department of Physiology, Otago School of Medical Sciences, University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand

Received 9 July 2015; Revised 19 October 2015; Accepted 20 October 2015

Academic Editor: José L. Ríos

Copyright © 2015 Kristine C. Y. McGrath et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Oxidative stress and inflammation, leading to endothelial dysfunction, contribute to the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis. The popularity of natural product supplements has increased in recent years, especially those with purported anti-inflammatory and/or antioxidant effects. The efficacy and mechanism of many of these products are not yet well understood. In this study, we tested the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects of a supplement, HIPER Health Supplement (HIPER), on cytokine-induced inflammation and oxidative stress in human coronary artery endothelial cells (HCAECs). HIPER is a mixture of French maritime pine bark extract (PBE), honey, aloe vera, and papaya extract. Treatment for 24 hours with HIPER reduced TNF-α-induced reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation that was associated with decreased NADPH oxidase 4 and increased superoxide dismutase-1 expression. HIPER inhibited TNF-α induced monocyte adhesion to HCAECs that was in keeping with decreased expression of vascular cell adhesion molecule-1 and intercellular cell adhesion molecule-1 and decreased nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-κB) activation. Further investigation of mechanism showed HIPER reduced TNF-α induced IκBα and p38 and MEK1/2 MAP kinases phosphorylation. Our findings show that HIPER has potent inhibitory effects on HCAECs inflammatory and oxidative stress responses that may protect against endothelial dysfunction that underlies early atherosclerotic lesion formation.