In her PhD thesis Eli-Anne Skaug has studied the endothelial function of almost 5000 healthy men and women.


  1. 16 % of healthy women and 17 % of healthy men have impaired endothelial function.
  2. The association of cardiovascular risk with endothelial dysfunction is more pronounced in women.
  3. Physically inactive men who use non-smoking tobacco have impaired endothelial function.


Thesis: Endothelial function in a healthy Norwegian population: Risk factors, age and gender in the HUNT3 survey
Candidate: Eli-Anne Skaug
Time: October 19, 2018 at 12:15
Place: Øya Helsehus: Auditorium ØHA11
Link to university website (in Norwegian)


(1) Endothelial function was measured by flow-mediated dilatation in 4739 healthy women and men in the HUNT3 Fitness study between 2006 and 2008. 16 % of the women and 17 % of the men had endothelial dysfunction. In men, the function decreased gradually from 30 years of age, whereas a steep decline in womens’ endothelial function started at around 45 years of age.

(2) Skaug and colleagues found a stronger association between several cardiovascular risk factors and endothelial function in women compared to men. The metabolic syndrome and high blood glucose was associated with reduced endothelial function in women, but not in men. The associations with endothelial dysfunction were also stronger for hypertension and low cardiorespiratory fitness in women.

(3) Male users of snuff (non-smoking tobacco) tend to have reduced endothelial function compared to non-users. According to Skaug’s data, the association is significant in physically inactive snuff users, when compared to non-users who are physically active.


(1) Skaug, E. A., Aspenes, S. T., Oldervoll, L., Mørkedal, B., Vatten, L., Wisløff, U., & Ellingsen, Ø. (2013). Age and gender differences of endothelial function in 4739 healthy adults: the HUNT3 Fitness StudyEuropean journal of preventive cardiology20(4), 531-540.

(2) Skaug, E. A., Madssen, E., Aspenes, S. T., Wisløff, U., & Ellingsen, Ø. (2014). Cardiovascular risk factors have larger impact on endothelial function in self-reported healthy women than men in the HUNT3 fitness studyPLoS One9(7), e101371.

(3) Skaug, E. A., Nes, B., Aspenes, S. T., & Ellingsen, Ø. (2016). Non-smoking tobacco affects endothelial function in healthy men in one of the largest health studies ever performed; The Nord-Trøndelag Health Study in Norway; HUNT3PloS one11(8), e0160205.

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