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Curr Atheroscler Rep. 2013 Jun;15(6):329. doi: 10.1007/s11883-013-0329-5.

Pro-inflammatory genetic markers of atherosclerosis.

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  • 1Dipartimento Biomedico di Medicina Interna e Specialistica, Universit√† di Palermo, Via Del Vespro 127, 90129, Palermo, Italy. e.incalcaterra@email.it

Abstract

Atherosclerosis (AS) is a chronic, progressive, multifactorial disease mostly affecting large and medium-sized elastic and muscular arteries. It has formerly been considered a bland lipid storage disease. Currently, multiple independent pathways of evidence suggest this pathological condition is a peculiar form of inflammation, triggered by cholesterol-rich lipoproteins and influenced both by environmental and genetic factors. The Human Genome Project opened up the opportunity to dissect complex human traits and to understand basic pathways of multifactorial diseases such as AS. Population-based association studies have emerged as powerful tools for examining genes with a role in common multifactorial diseases that have a strong environmental component. These association studies often estimate the risk of developing a certain disease in carriers and non-carriers of a particular genetic polymorphism. Dissecting out the influence of pro-inflammatory genes within the complex pathophysiology of AS and its complications will help to provide a more complete risk assessment and complement known classical cardiovascular risk factors. The detection of a risk profile will potentially allow both the early identification of individuals susceptible to disease and the possible discovery of potential targets for drug or lifestyle modification; i.e. it will open the door to personalized medicine.

PMID:
23591672
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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