AbstractAbnormalities of vasoactive eicosanoid synthesis with age are reported. We observed an age-associated reduction of vascular prostacyclin production and thrombin-stimulated thromboxane A2 production in blood. Amounts of production of these eicosanoids were inversely related to plasma cholesterol levels. However, there were no such relationships in rats supplemented with cholesterol. Dietary cholesterol supplementation induced a reduction of thromboxane A2/prostacyclin ratio regardless of age. These results suggest that age- associated changes of blood cholesterol levels are closely linked with vasoactive eicosanoid synthesis and that excessive consumption of cholesterol may induce a compensatory reaction by reducing the thromboxane A2/prostacyclin ratio.
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