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Fall 2009


Upper Cervical Manipulation for Patients with Stage I Hypertension

CO-PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATORS: Christine Goertz, D.C., Ph.D ; and Gervasio Lamas, M.D.
CO-INVESTIGATORS: Cynthia Long, Ph.D ; Robert Brooks, D.C.; Maria Hondras, D.C., M.P.H.; and Ian McLean, D.C., DACBR  

The William and Jo Harris Building houses the Palmer Center for Chiropractic Research (PCCR) on the Davenport Campus. Independent research studies also are conducted separately on each of Palmer’s campuses.
William and Jo Harris Building

The Palmer Center for Chiropractic Research (PCCR) is collaborating with Trinity Terrace Park Family Practice Clinic in Bettendorf, Iowa, and Mount Sinai Medical Center in Miami, Fla., to conduct a study on chiropractic for hypertension in patients, or CHiP. The primary study goal is to determine the efficacy of non-rotary upper cervical spinal manipulation in lowering systolic blood pressure when compared to a sham control group after an eight-week follow-up period. CHiP also will:1) compare blood pressure outcomes between two different types of non-rotary upper cervical techniques; 2) establish a reliable method of measuring the atlas alignment using X-ray; 3) explore the relationship between atlas alignment change and blood pressure change; and 4) determine the durability of blood pressure reduction over a six-month time period. This collaborative study is designed to replicate a previous study conducted by Bakris, et al, which showed a significant improvement in the blood pressure of individuals who were treated with an upper cervical technique. CHiP is one of three projects that are part of a four-year, $2.8 million grant to the PCCR from the National Institute of Health’s National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine.

Effects and underlying mechanisms of curcumin on the proliferation of vascular smooth muscle cells induced by Chol:M‚CD

AUTHORS: Li Qin; Yun-Bo Yang; Qin-Hui Tuo; Bing-Yang Zhu; Lin-Xi Chen; Florida Campus Director of Research Liang Zhang, M.D. , Ph.D; Duan-Fang Liao

Proliferation of vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) contributes to the development of various cardiovascular diseases. Curcumin, extracted from Curcumae longae, a plant source of the spice turmeric, has been shown to have a variety of beneficial effects on human health, including anti-atherosclerosis, but the mechanisms are poorly understood. In the present study, we attempted to investigate whether curcumin, when used as a daily supplement, has any effect on VSMCs proliferation and the potential mechanisms involved. Our data showed curcumin nullifies the proliferation of primary rat VSMCs induced by Chol:M‚CD, a “water-soluble cholesterol” used as an experimental replacement for cholesterol. By exploring the underlying cellular and molecular mechanisms, we found that curcumin was capable of restoring caveolin-1 expression (regulator of cell proliferation) which was reduced by Chol:M,CD treatment. Moreover, curcumin inhibits the increase of extracellular signalregulated kinases (ERK1/2), which are enzymes that play a key role in cellular growth, and reverses the cell cycle progression induced by Chol:M‚CD. Overall, our data suggest curcumin inhibits Chol:M‚CD-induced VSMCs proliferation via restoring caveolin-1 expression that leads to the suppression of over-activated ERK signaling and causes cell cycle arrest at G1/S phase. These novel findings support the beneficial potential of curcumin in cardiovascular disease.

The full abstract of this study was published in Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communication . 2009;379:277-282.

Researchers in bold are graduates and/or faculty members of Palmer College.  

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