We hypothesized that simvastatin may reduce adiponectin levels and insulin sensitivity in hypercholesterolemic patients.
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS
This was a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel study. Age, sex, and BMI were matched. Thirty-two patients were given placebo, and 30, 32, 31, and 31 patients were given daily 10, 20, 40, and 80 mg simvastatin, respectively, during a 2-month treatment period.
Simvastatin doses of 10, 20, 40, and 80 mg significantly reduced total cholesterol (mean changes 27, 25, 37, and 38%), LDL cholesterol (39, 38, 52, and 54%), and apolipoprotein B levels (24, 30, 36, and 42%) and improved flow-mediated dilation (FMD) (68, 40, 49, and 63%) after 2 months of therapy compared with baseline (P < 0.001 by paired t test) or compared with placebo (P < 0.001 by ANOVA). Simvastatin doses of 10, 20, 40, and 80 mg significantly decreased plasma adiponectin levels (4, 12, 5, and 10%) and insulin sensitivity (determined by the Quantitative Insulin-Sensitivity Check Index [QUICKI]) (5, 8, 6, and 6%) compared with baseline (P < 0.05 by paired t test) or compared with placebo (P = 0.011 for adiponectin and P = 0.034 for QUICKI by ANOVA). However, the magnitudes of these percent changes (FMD, adiponectin, and QUICKI) were not significantly different among four different doses of simvastatin despite dose-dependent changes in the reduction of apolipoprotein B levels.
Simvastatin significantly improved endothelium-dependent dilation, but reduced adiponectin levels and insulin sensitivity in hypercholesterolemic patients independent of dose and the extent of apolipoprotein B reduction.