Natural hormone offers hope for treatment of the metabolic syndrome

Blood Pressure CheckAngiotensin 1-7, a hormone in the body that has cardiovascular benefits, improves the metabolic syndrome in rats, according to a new study. The results will be presented Wednesday at The Endocrine Society’s 91st Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C.

"No specific form of medical therapy for the metabolic syndrome presently exists," said the study’s lead author, Yonit Marcus, MD, a PhD student at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot, Israel. "But an estimated 20 to 25 percent of the world’s adult population has the metabolic syndrome."

The metabolic syndrome is a cluster of risk factors that raise the risk of developing heart disease, stroke and diabetes. A diagnosis of the metabolic syndrome comes from having at least three of the following: increased waist circumference (abdominal obesity), low HDL ("good") cholesterol, high triglycerides (fats in the blood), high blood pressure and high blood glucose (blood sugar).

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