Endogenous vascular repair system in cardiovascular disease: The role of endothelial progenitor cells

Alexander E Berezin


Cardiovascular (CV) disease has been considered as the first global leading cause of premature death in last decades. Vascular complications close correspond to development of endothelial dysfunction, microvascular inflammation, accelerating atherosclerosis, coagulopathy, and thrombosis, in pathogenesis of which altered vascular reparation is core player and possible target for further treatment strategy.

The aim of the review is: to summarize knowledge regarding the role of endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) as a core component of endogenous vascular repair system in CV disease.

This is a descriptive review based on evidence of pre-clinical and clinical studies published within last decade.

The review is reported that developing of CV disease associates with lowered number and impaired function of circulating EPCs, which play a pivotal role in endogenous reparation of vasculature and restore endothelial function after various injuries on the vessels. EPCs could be modified by several stimuli including epigenetic factors and thereby they are failed completely restoring vascular structure and endothelial function. However, there is unclear whether EPC dysfunction is just a whiteness of the evolution of CV disease or it could be a trigger of CV disease manifestation in the vulnerable population.

EPCs are novel biological marker of impaired vascular reparation and CV risk with predictive value. Large clinical trials are required to justify number and function of EPCs as independent prognosticator of CV risk.
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