Article Type

Original Study


Objective The aim of this work was to study the effect of garlic on the lipid profile of hypercholesterolemic rats and investigate the vascular reactivity to norepinephrine and acetylcholine in hypercholesterolemic rats treated with garlic in-vitro experiments. Background Hypercholesterolemia is considered an important risk factor for the development of atherosclerosis; currently, there is a major trend to use herbal remedies for the treatment and prevention of hypercholesterolemia and garlic is used for this purpose. Methods Forty male rats were divided into the following four groups of 10 animals each: (i) normal diet-fed animals (control), (ii) hypercholesterolemic animals, (iii) hypercholesterolemic garlic-treated animals, and (iv) hypercholesterolemic garlic-prophylactic animals. The animals were fed a standard food preparation enriched with 2% cholesterol for 2 months and soya bean oil. Thirty days after beginning the experiment, garlic was administered in the hypercholesterolemic garlic-treated group whereas in the hypercholesterolemic garlic-prophylactic group garlic was administered from the start till the end of the experiment. At the end of the experiment, a blood sample was drawn from each rat to determine total cholesterol and to separate the lipoproteins; also, a segment of the thoracic aorta was removed to study endothelial function (vascular reactivity). Results Garlic reduced the total serum cholesterol levels and low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol levels significantly. Endothelium-dependent relaxation was significantly greater in the treated and prophylactic group compared with that in the hypercholesterolemic group. Conclusion Garlic played a significant role in prophylaxis and treatment of hypercholesterolemia and improvement of endothelial dysfunction.