Resveratrol and metabolic health in COPD: A proof-of-concept randomized controlled trial

Rosanne J. H. C. G. Beijers*, Harry R. Gosker, Karin J. C. Sanders, Chiel de Theije, Marco Kelders, Gerard Clarke, John F. Cryan, Bram van den Borst, Annemie M. W. J. Schols

*Corresponding author for this work

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Background: Patients with COPD are often characterized by disturbed metabolic health which is reflected in altered body composition. Current studies in healthy subjects suggest that resveratrol improves metabolic health by enhancing muscle mitochondrial function and adipose tissue morphology. The primary objective was to investigate the effect of four weeks resveratrol supplementation on muscle mitochondrial function in patients with COPD. Secondary objectives were to investigate the effect of resveratrol on adipose tissue inflammatory and metabolic gene expression, systemic inflammation and body composition in patients with COPD.

Methods: In a double-blind randomized placebo-controlled proof-of-concept study, 21 COPD patients (FEVi: 53 +/- 15% predicted; age: 67 +/- 9 years and BMI: 24.5 +/- 3.3 kg/m(2)) received resveratrol (150 mg/day) or placebo for four weeks. Before and after intervention, blood samples, quadriceps muscle and subcutaneous abdominal fat biopsies were obtained for metabolic and inflammatory profiling. Body composition was assessed by dual energy X-ray absorptiometry.

Results: Muscle mitochondrial biogenesis regulators AMPK, SIRT1 and PGC-1 alpha as well as mitochondrial respiration, Oxphos complexes, oxidative enzyme activities and kynurenine aminotransferases were not improved by resveratrol. Plasma high-sensitive C-reactive protein and kynurenine did not change after resveratrol supplementation. Adipose tissue inflammatory markers were unaffected by resveratrol, while markers of glycolysis and lipolysis were significantly increased compared to placebo supplementation. Body weight decreased after resveratrol supplementation (resveratrol -0.95 +/- 1.01 kg vs placebo -0.16 +/- 0.66 kg, p = 0.049) due to a reduction in lean mass (resveratrol -1.79 +/- 1.67 kg vs 0.37 +/- 0.86 kg, p = 0.026).

Conclusion: We do not confirm previously reported positive effects of resveratrol on skeletal muscle mitochondrial function in patients with COPD, but show an unexpected decline in lean mass. (C) 2020 Elsevier Ltd and European Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2989-2997
Number of pages9
JournalClinical Nutrition
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2020


  • COPD
  • Resveratrol
  • Skeletal muscle
  • Adipose tissue
  • Body composition

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