Atherosclerosis is a systemic inflammatory disease of arterial wall and initiated by endothelial damage. The integrity and functional activity of endothelial monolayer play an important role in atherogenesis. The extent of endothelial injurymay represent a balance between themagnitude of injury and the capacity for repair. Traditional view suggested endothelium integrity is maintained by neighboring mature endothelial cells which migrate and proliferate to restore the injured endothelial cells. However, a series of clinical and basic studies prompted by the discovery of bone marrow-derived endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) have demonstrated that the injured endothelial monolayer may be regenerated partly by circulating EPCs. These circulating EPCs are mobilized endogenously triggered by tissue ischemia or exogenously by cytokine stimulation. Clinical studies demonstrated that levels of circulating EPCs are associated with vascular endothelial function and cardiovascular risk factors, and help to identify patients at increased cardiovascular risk. Reduced levels of circulating EPCs independently predict atherosclerotic disease progression and development of cardiovascular events. Therefore, a better understanding of the relation between EPCs and atherosclerosis would provide additional insight into the pathogenesis of cardiovascular disease and create novel therapeutic strategies. Here, we will make a brief review to clarify the effects of cardiovascular risk factors on circulating EPCs.
|Number of pages||7|
|Journal||Acta Cardiologica Sinica|
|State||Published - 1 Sep 2014|
- Endothelial function
- Endothelial progenitor cell