In the present study we evaluate the blood pressure-lowering effect of the following products: the hydrolysate obtained from egg white (EW) by enzymatic treatment with pepsin (HEW), the peptide fraction of HEW with molecular mass lower than 3000 Da (HEW<3000 Da), and three peptide sequences isolated from HEW<3000 Da (Tyr-Ala-Glu-Glu-Arg-Tyr-Pro-Ile-Leu: YAEERYPIL); (Arg-Ala-Asp-His-Pro-Phe-Leu: RADHPFL); and (Ile-Val-Phe (IVF)). These peptides, and also HEW and HEW<3000 Da, had been characterized previously in vitro as potent inhibitors of angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE). EW and the products mentioned earlier were orally administered by gastric intubation, to 17–20-week-old male spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR) and normotensive Wistar–Kyoto (WKY) rats. We measured the systolic blood pressure (SBP) and the diastolic blood pressure (DBP) of the rats by the tail cuff method before administration and also 2, 4, 6, 8 and 24h post-administration. Distilled water served as negative control, and we used captopril (50mg/kg) as positive control to carry out similar experiments with a known ACE inhibitor. HEW, HEW<3000 Da and the three peptide sequences decreased SBP and DBP in SHR but they did not modify these variables in WKY rats. The peptide sequences YAEERYPIL, RADHPFL and IVF showed a potency to decrease blood pressure greater than HEW or HEW<3000 Da. The results obtained suggest that the studied products could be used as a functional food with potential therapeutic benefit in the prevention and treatment of hypertension.
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