Role of Lipid Accumulation and Inflammation in Atherosclerosis: Focus on Molecular and Cellular Mechanisms.

Frontiers in Cardiovascular Medicine
Khojasteh MalekmohammadMahmoud Rafieian-Kopaei


Atherosclerosis is a chronic lipid-driven and maladaptive inflammatory disease of arterial intima. It is characterized by the dysfunction of lipid homeostasis and signaling pathways that control the inflammation. This article reviews the role of inflammation and lipid accumulation, especially low-density lipoprotein (LDL), in the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis, with more emphasis on cellular mechanisms. Furthermore, this review will briefly highlight the role of medicinal plants, long non-coding RNA (lncRNA), and microRNAs in the pathophysiology, treatment, and prevention of atherosclerosis. Lipid homeostasis at various levels, including receptor-mediated uptake, synthesis, storage, metabolism, efflux, and its impairments are important for the development of atherosclerosis. The major source of cholesterol and lipid accumulation in the arterial wall is proatherogenic modified low-density lipoprotein (mLDL). Modified lipoproteins, such as oxidized low-density lipoprotein (ox-LDL) and LDL binding with proteoglycans of the extracellular matrix in the intima of blood vessels, cause aggregation of lipoprotein particles, endothelial damage, leukocyte recruitment, foam cell formation, and inflammation. Inflammation is the key contrib...Continue Reading

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