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Atherosclerosis. 1995 Dec;118 Suppl:S51-6.

Gene therapy for vascular diseases.

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  • 1Department of Internal Medicine and Physiology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, USA.


Arterial injury induces the synthesis of gene products that stimulate smooth muscle cell (SMC) migration and proliferation, leading to intimal hyperplasia. This process contributes to the pathogenesis of many cardiovascular diseases, including vascular proliferative diseases and atherosclerosis. Molecular approaches to the inhibition of SMC proliferation could potentially limit intimal expansion following vascular injury. During the past five years, there has been considerable interest in developing methods for the introduction and expression of recombinant genes in the vasculature. Gene transfer offers novel approaches to the study and treatment of vascular diseases. To date, gene transfer to the vasculature has been employed largely for two purposes: (1) examination of the expression and function of recombinant genes in vivo; and (2) development of potential new therapies for vascular diseases.

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