Effect of low doses of red wine and pure resveratrol on circulating endothelial progenitor cells

Maria Luisa Balestrieri, Concetta Schiano, Francesca Felice, Amelia Casamassimi, Antonio Balestrieri, Lara Milone, Luigi Servillo, Claudio Napoli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Circulating endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) play a significant role in neovascularization of ischaemic tissues and in re-endothelization of injured blood vessels. Identification of compounds able to enhance EPC levels and improve their functional activity, noticeably compromised by risk factors for coronary heart disease, is of clinical interest. This study evaluates the effects of red wine on EPCs. After being isolated from total peripheral blood mononuclear cells, EPC phenotype was confirmed by the presence of double positive cells for DiLDL uptake and lectin binding and by expression of CD34, CD133 and VE-cadherin cell surface markers. Long-term culture in the presence of red wine (1 μl/ml), containing resveratrol (Resv) at physiological concentration (nM), determined a time-dependent amelioration of cell number (P <0.05). The presence of red wine prevented the TNF-α-induced reduction of EPC number (P <0.05) and this effect was accompanied by reduced p38-phosphorylation expression levels (P <0.05) and increased NOx levels (P <0.05) Indeed, pure Resv alone significantly improved the TNF-α reduced EPC number (P <0.05). This evidence indicates novel beneficial effects of red wine and Resv in the positive modulation of EPCs levels.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)179-186
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Biochemistry
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2008


  • Antioxidants
  • Endothelial progenitor cells
  • Red wine
  • Resveratrol

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry


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