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Cardiovasc Res. 2008 Jul 1;79(1):7-13. doi: 10.1093/cvr/cvn102. Epub 2008 May 9.

Regulation of lysyl oxidase in vascular cells: lysyl oxidase as a new player in cardiovascular diseases.

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Centro de Investigación Cardiovascular, CSIC-ICCC, Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau, Antoni Ma Claret 167, 08025 Barcelona, Spain.


Lysyl oxidase (LOX) plays a crucial role in the maintenance of extracellular matrix stability and could participate in vascular remodelling associated with cardiovascular diseases. Evidence from in vitro and in vivo studies shows that LOX downregulation is associated with the endothelial dysfunction characteristic of earlier stages of the atherosclerotic process. Conversely, upregulation of this enzyme in vascular cells could induce neointimal thickening in atherosclerosis and restenosis. In fact, LOX is chemotactic for vascular smooth muscle cells and monocytes, is modulated by proliferative stimulus in these cells, and could control other cellular processes such as gene expression and cell transformation. Furthermore, it is conceivable that LOX downregulation could underlie plaque instability and contribute to the destructive remodelling that takes place during aneurysm development. Overall, LOX could play a key role in vascular homeostasis and, hence, it emerges as a new player in cardiovascular diseases. This review addresses the experimental evidence related to the role of LOX in vascular disorders and the potential benefits of controlling its expression and function.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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