Therapeutic interventions working through multiple mechanisms involved in atheroma pathogenesis, such as statins, which both lower lipids and alter the inflammatory milieu in the vessel wall, hold promise for the future.
In this brief review, we explore the biological role of inflammation in atherosclerosis, with a focus on cellular involvement in both acute and chronic inflammation, and outline novel biomarkers of inflammation and atherosclerosis with a particular focus on the potential application of these novel approaches in improving strategies for disease diagnosis and management.
The concept of the involvement of inflammation in the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis has existed since the 1800s, stemming from sentinel pathologic observations made by Rudolf Virchow, Karl Rokitansky, and others.
Our understanding of the complex role played by immune and inflammatory mediators in the initiation and progression of atherosclerosis has evolved considerably in the intervening years, and today, a dramatically evolved understanding of these processes has led to advances in both diagnostic and prognostic approaches, as well as novel treatment modalities targeting inflammatory and immune mediators.
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