Association of L-α Glycerylphosphorylcholine with Subsequent Stroke Risk after 10 Years

Gyeongsil Lee, Seulggie Choi, Jooyoung Chang, Daein Choi, Joung Sik Son, Kyuwoong Kim, Sung Min Kim, Seogsong Jeong, Sang Min Park

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Importance: L-α glycerylphosphorylcholine (α-GPC, choline alphoscerate) is used globally by individuals older than 50 years based on its potential function as a precursor of acetylcholine. However, choline has previously been linked to a higher risk of cardiovascular disease via trimethylamine-N-oxide, a metabolite of choline by microbiota. Objective: To investigate the association between α-GPC use and subsequent 10-year stroke risk. Design, Setting, and Participants: A population-based, retrospective cohort study was conducted using data from the National Health Insurance Service of South Korea. Participants included men and women aged 50 years or older without underlying stroke or Alzheimer disease (N = 12008977). Main Outcomes and Measures: All participants were divided into whether they were prescribed α-GPC during 2006-2008. α-GPC users were matched with nonusers for all covariates to create a matched cohort. α-GPC use was further divided into durations less than 2, 2 to 6, 6 to 12, and more than 12 months of α-GPC prescriptions. The adjusted hazard ratios (aHRs) and 95% CIs for total stroke, ischemic stroke, and hemorrhagic stroke from January 1, 2009, to January 31, 2018, were calculated by multivariate Cox proportional hazards regression. Results: A total of 12008977 individuals (6 401 965 [53.3%] women) aged 50 years or older were included in the study. The mean (SD) age was 61.6 (9.4) years for nonusers and 68.3 (10.0) years for users, and that of the matching cohort was 68.2 (9.9) years for both groups. Compared with α-GPC nonusers (n = 11900100), users (n = 108877) had a higher risk for total stroke (aHR, 1.46; 95% CI, 1.43-1.48), ischemic stroke (aHR 1.36; 95% CI, 1.33-1.39), and hemorrhagic stroke (aHR, 1.36; 95% CI, 1.28-1.44). After matching for all covariates, α-GPC users had a higher risk for total stroke (aHR, 1.43; 95% CI, 1.41-1.46), ischemic stroke (aHR, 1.34; 95% CI, 1.31-1.37), and hemorrhagic stroke (aHR, 1.37; 95% CI, 1.29-1.46). Increasing intake of α-GPC was associated with a higher risk for total stroke in a dose-response manner. Conclusions and Relevance: In this cohort study, use of α-GPC was associated with a higher 10-year incident stroke risk in a dose-response manner after adjusting for traditional cerebrovascular risk factors. Future studies are needed to determine the possible mechanisms behind the potential cerebrovascular risk-elevating effects of α-GPC..

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere2136008
JournalJAMA network open
Issue number11
StatePublished - 24 Nov 2021


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