Platelets and other cells interactions in the atherosclerosis development

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Atherosclerosis of the blood vessels is one of the main causes of severe chronic vascular pathologies, which quite often lead to the fatal end. It is well known that the development of atherosclerosis is an inflammatory process going through several stages until the formation of an atherosclerotic plaque. The latter, due to increased instability, would come off and cause thromboembolism. Low density lipoproteins, endothelium, platelets, neutrophils, monocytes / macrophages and smooth muscle cells of the vessel wall are all active participants in the development of atherosclerosis. Thus, they trigger and carry out the process by forming a platelet thrombus on the surface of the ulcerated calcified atherosclerotic plaque. In the recent time interest in the role of platelets in inflammatory processes has grown immensely, first of all due to their ability to interact with cells participating in different stages of atherosclerosis development through adhesion, formation of aggregations, the exchange of exovesicles and microparticles, as well as through the mutually increasing secretion of cytokines, chemokines, growth factors and other chemical mediators. This review is devoted to the role of platelets in the formation and regulation of the multicellular ensemble and also local cell modules specific for each stage of atherosclerosis development.

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About the authors

Nina S. Parfenova

Institute of Experimental Medicine

Author for correspondence.
SPIN-code: 9415-0241
Scopus Author ID: 7003709364

MD, Cand. Sci. (Med.), Senior Research Associate

Russian Federation, 12, Academician Pavlov Str., Saint Petersburg, 197376


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