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Gut microbiota and microbiota-derived metabolites in cardiovascular diseases.



Cardiovascular diseases, including heart failure, coronary artery disease, atherosclerosis, aneurysm, thrombosis, and hypertension, are a great economic burden and threat to human health and are the major cause of death worldwide. Recently, researchers have begun to appreciate the role of microbial ecosystems within the human body in contributing to metabolic and cardiovascular disorders. Accumulating evidence has demonstrated that the gut microbiota is closely associated with the occurrence and development of cardiovascular diseases. The gut microbiota functions as an endocrine organ that secretes bioactive metabolites that participate in the maintenance of cardiovascular homeostasis, and their dysfunction can directly influence the progression of cardiovascular disease. This review summarizes the current literature demonstrating the role of the gut microbiota in the development of cardiovascular diseases. We also highlight the mechanism by which well-documented gut microbiota-derived metabolites, especially trimethylamine N-oxide, short-chain fatty acids, and phenylacetylglutamine, promote or inhibit the pathogenesis of cardiovascular diseases. We also discuss the therapeutic potential of altering the gut microbiota and microbiota-derived metabolites to improve or prevent cardiovascular diseases.

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