Potential of low, sub-therapeutic doses of statins and sartans in primary and secondary cardiovascular disease prevention




01. May 2017 - 30. April 2020


0,03 FTE


Janja Marc


3.06 Medical sciences / Cardiovascular system

Research Organisation:







Cardiovascular diseases still represent the major cause of morbidity and mortality in developed countries. The most important and most effective global approach to decrease the incidence of cardiovascular diseases is their effective prevention. Despite the fact that the current non-pharmacological and pharmacological strategies slightly restricted the burden of cardiovascular diseases, it is estimated that their incidence will further significantly rise due to unhealthy lifestyle and the ageing of the population in next decades. The current strategy of prevention actions is focused on non-pharmacological and pharmacological restriction or on the treatment of risk factors for cardiovascular diseases (hypercholesterolemia, arterial hypertension, diabetes mellitus, smoking, increased body weight, physical inactivity, etc.).   In the project we further study the new, innovative treatment approach for the cardiovascular diseases prevention. It consists of a one-month treatment period with a low, sub-therapeutic doses of a statin and sartan combination, followed by a 6-12 month period without treatment. During the period without treatment the positive effect of the treatment gradually decrease, but when the one-month treatment is repeated, similar improvements of arterial wall function is achieved as in the first treatment cycle. The novelty of the described approach is that it does not focus on the risk factors, but directly to the arterial wall, which is at the centre of the pathophysiological process of atherosclerosis and is a common target of damaging effects of all risk factors. Therefore, it is logical, that arterial wall should be one of the most important targets of the preventive strategies.   We continue the project on the basis of the results of our previous very successful project (No. L3- 2293), in which we have found and also as the first time published yet unknown effects of low doses of statins, sartans, and especially their combination on the function of arterial wall. We implement approach with the use of substances that would act directly on the arterial wall, in order to inhibit the harmful processes therein, to improve the performance of the entire arterial system and the long-term reduction in the incidence of complications due to atherosclerosis-related cardiovascular disease. The target population would initially be healthy individuals, or patients who have not suffered cardiovascular events, but have risk factors for accelerated aging process of the arterial wall, and atherosclerosis (patients with diabetes mellitus, patients with chronic kidney disease, etc.).   The project consist of clinical and non-clinical studies, the major aims of the project are: to examine the effectiveness of the new innovative therapeutic approach to arterial ageing in the new, patient groups (as described above) and to examine the impact of new innovative therapeutic approach to the heart muscle function or its effect on diastolic dysfunction and to examine the precise mechanism of action - cascading path at the molecular level, using several experimental methods.   We expect that the results of this multidisciplinary project will contribute significantly to the clinical as well as to a basic knowledge in the prevention of cardiovascular diseases. We explain the mechanisms of action of our innovative therapeutic approach and also prove the effectiveness of the approach in the prevention of cardiovascular diseases. We aim to establish a new, convenient, secure, user-friendly and cost-effective approach in primary and secondary prevention of cardiovascular diseases.



Bibliographical references, arising directly from the implementation of the project:


Financed by:

Research projects (co)funded by the Slovenian Research Agency.