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If you must take statins and want to avoid hardening of arteries, take vitamin K2 – RCT May 2015

Menaquinone-7 supplementation improves arterial stiffness in healthy postmenopausal women – A double-blind randomised clinical trial

Thrombosis and Haemostasis, DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1160/TH14-08-0675, May pp. 911–1157
M. H. J. Knapen (1), L. A. J. L. M. Braam (1), N. E. Drummen (1), O. Bekers (2), A. P. G. Hoeks (3), C. Vermeer (1)
(1) VitaK & Cardiovascular Research Institute (CARIM), Maastricht University, The Netherlands; (2) Central Diagnostic Laboratory, University Hospital Maastricht, The Netherlands; (3) Biomedical Engineering, Maastricht University, The Netherlands

Observational data suggest a link between menaquinone (MK, vitamin K2) intake and cardiovascular (CV) health. However, MK intervention trials with vascular endpoints are lacking. We investigated long-term effects of MK-7 (180 µg MenaQ7/day) supplementation on arterial stiffness in a double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Healthy postmenopausal women (n=244) received either placebo (n=124) or MK-7 (n=120) for three years. Indices of local carotid stiffness (intima-media thickness IMT, Diameter end-diastole and Distension) were measured by echotracking. Regional aortic stiffness (carotid-femoral and carotid-radial Pulse Wave Velocity, cfPWV and crPWV, respectively) was measured using mechanotransducers. Circulating desphospho-uncarboxylated matrix Gla-protein (dp-ucMGP) as well as acute phase markers Interleukin-6 (IL-6), high-sensitive C-reactive protein (hsCRP), tumour necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) and markers for endothelial dysfunction Vascular Cell Adhesion Molecule (VCAM), E-selectin, and Advanced Glycation Endproducts (AGEs) were measured. At baseline dp-ucMGP was associated with IMT, Diameter, cfPWV and with the mean z-scores of acute phase markers (APMscore) and of markers for endothelial dysfunction (EDFscore).

After three year MK-7 supplementation

  • cfPWV and the
  • Stiffness Index βs ignificantly decreased in the total group,


  • distension,
  • compliance,
  • distensibility,
  • Young’s Modulus, and the
  • ocal carotid PWV (cPWV)

improved in women having a baseline Stiffness Index β above the median of 10.8. MK-7 decreased dp-ucMGP by 50 % compared to placebo, but did not influence the markers for acute phase and endothelial dysfunction.
In conclusion, long-term use of MK-7 supplements improves arterial stiffness in healthy postmenopausal women, especially in women having a high arterial stiffness.

Previous study was reported on by VitaminK2 Organization

-http://vitamink2.org/menaquinone-7-supplementation-improves-arterial-stiffness-healthy-postmenopausal-women-double-blind-randomised-clinical-trial-knapen-mhj-et-al/Menaquinone-7 supplementation improves arterial stiffness . . ]

  • Stiffness Index ß in the MK-7 group had decreased significantly after compared to the slight increase in the placebo group (-0.67 ± 2.78 vs +0.15 ± 2.51, respectively, p=0.018)
  • “This is the first published study that shows that a ‘nutritional’ dose of vitamin K can actually improve cardiovascular properties, which correlates with improved status of vitamin K (i.e., a decreased level of dpucMGP) in the body.”

Statins stimulate atherosclerosis and heart failure: pharmacological mechanisms.

Expert Rev Clin Pharmacol. 2015 Mar;8(2):189-99. doi: 10.1586/17512433.2015.1011125. Epub 2015 Feb 6.
Okuyama H1, Langsjoen PH, Hamazaki T, Ogushi Y, Hama R, Kobayashi T, Uchino H.
1Nagoya City University and Institute for Consumer Science and Human Life, Kinjo Gakuin University, 2-1723 Omori, Moriyama, Nagoya 463-8521, Japan.

In contrast to the current belief that cholesterol reduction with statins decreases atherosclerosis, we present a perspective that statins may be causative in coronary artery calcification and can function as mitochondrial toxins that impair muscle function in the heart and blood vessels through the depletion of coenzyme Q10 and 'heme A', and thereby ATP generation.

Statins inhibit the synthesis of vitamin K2, the cofactor for matrix Gla-protein activation, which in turn protects arteries from calcification. Statins inhibit the biosynthesis of selenium containing proteins, one of which is glutathione peroxidase serving to suppress peroxidative stress. An impairment of selenoprotein biosynthesis may be a factor in congestive heart failure, reminiscent of the dilated cardiomyopathies seen with selenium deficiency.

Thus, the epidemic of heart failure and atherosclerosis that plagues the modern world may paradoxically be aggravated by the pervasive use of statin drugs. We propose that current statin treatment guidelines be critically reevaluated.

PMID: 25655639

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