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Lupus. 2005;14(9):760-4.

Oxidant stress, inflammation and atherogenesis.

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Center of Excellence on Aging, G d'Annunzio Foundation, University of Chieti, G d'Annunzio School of Medicine, Chieti, Italy.


Low-grade inflammation, enhanced oxidant stress and lipid peroxidation have been shown in association with increased cardiovascular risk associated with cardiovascular events. It has been hypothesized that the low-grade inflammatory state characterizing metabolic disorders such as obesity, hypercholesterolemia, type 2 diabetes mellitus and homozygous homocystinuria may be the primary trigger of thromboxane-dependent platelet activation mediated, at least in part, through enhanced lipid peroxidation. Interestingly, as the clinical course of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), in particular in the presence of antiphospholipid antibodies, may be complicated by vascular disease, several mechanisms contributing to vascular complications have been documented also in this setting, including enhanced lipid peroxidation and thromboxane biosynthesis. Although epidemiological studies show an inverse relationship between antioxidant vitamin intake and cardiovascular disease, several clinical trials have obtained conflicting results on the effects of vitamin E on the risk of cardiovascular events. The availability of analytical tools for measuring F2-isoprostane biosynthesis in man has improved our understanding of the interplay between lipid peroxidation and low-grade inflammation. The use of F2-isoprostane as a biochemical end-point for dose-finding studies may allow reassessing the adequacy of vitamin supplementation in different clinical settings.

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