EDTA Chelation Therapy to Reduce Cardiovascular Events in Persons with Diabetes

Pamela Ouyang, Sheldon H. Gottlieb, Valerie L. Culotta, Ana Navas-Acien

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


The Trial to Assess Chelation Therapy (TACT) was a randomized double-blind placebo-controlled trial enrolling patients age ≥50 years with prior myocardial infarction. TACT used a 2 × 2 factorial design to study ethylene diamine tetraacetic acid (EDTA) chelation and high-dose vitamin supplementation. Chelation provided a modest but significant reduction in cardiovascular endpoints. The benefit was stronger and significant among participants with diabetes but absent in those without diabetes. Mechanisms by which chelation might reduce cardiovascular risk in persons with diabetes include the effects of EDTA chelation on transition and toxic metals. Transition metals, particularly copper and iron, play important roles in oxidative stress pathways. Toxic metals, in particular cadmium and lead, are toxic for the cardiovascular system. This review discusses the epidemiologic evidence and animal and human studies supporting the role of these metals in the development of diabetes and ischemic heart disease and potential ways by which EDTA chelation could confer cardiovascular benefit.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number96
JournalCurrent Cardiology Reports
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 22 2015


  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Chelation
  • Diabetes
  • Metals
  • Oxidative stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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