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Free Radic Biol Med. 2000 Jun 15;28(12):1815-26.

The oxidative modification hypothesis of atherogenesis: an overview.

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Department of Cell Biology, Cleveland Clinic Foundation, Cleveland, OH, USA.


The literature relating lipid and lipoprotein oxidation to atherosclerosis has expanded enormously in recent years. Papers on the "oxidative modification hypothesis" of atherogenesis have ranged from the most basic studies of the chemistry and enzymology of LDL oxidation, through studies of the biological effects of oxidized LDL on cultured cells, and on to in vivo studies of the effects of antioxidants on atherosclerosis in animals and humans. The data in support of this theory are mounting but many key questions remain unanswered. For example, while it is generally agreed that LDL undergoes oxidation and that oxidized LDL is present in arterial lesions, it is still not known how and where LDL gets oxidized in vivo nor which of its many biological effects demonstrable in vitro are relevant to atherogenesis in vivo. This brief review is not intended to be comprehensive but rather to offer a perspective and a context for this Forum. We discuss the strengths and weaknesses of each line of evidence, try to identify areas in which further research is needed, assess the relevance of the hypothesis to the human disease, and point to some of the potential targets for therapy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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