Possible Vaccine Could Lower Blood Pressure for Six Months
OSAKA, Japan, May 27 (UPI) — A vaccine may one day replace the pills taken for high blood pressure, according to a new study that found a test version was effective in rats for up to six months.
Researchers injected rats three times over the course of six weeks with a vaccine that targets the hormone which causes blood vessels to contract, causing hypertension. The injections successfully lowered hypertension, and also reduced tissue damage associated with high blood pressure.
“The potential of a vaccine for hypertension offers an innovative treatment that could be very effective for the control of non-compliance, which is one of the major problems in the management of hypertensive patients,” said Hironori Nakagami M.D., Ph.D., a professor at Osaka University in Japan, in a press release.
By using a DNA vaccine that works with hormones, as opposed to the ACE inhibitor drugs it is similar to or peptide-based vaccines, researchers have found a method that is longer-lasting and appears to avoid the side effects found with previous test vaccines.
“Further research on this DNA vaccine platform, including increasing the longevity of blood pressure reduction, may eventually provide a new therapeutic option to treat hypertensive patients,” Nakagami said.
The study is published in Hypertension.