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Matrix Metalloproteinases in Coronary Artery Disease:Clinical and Therapeutic Implications and Pathological Significance

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Matrix metalloproteinases (MMP) and their inhibitors (TIMP) are central factors in the control of extracellular matrix turnover. They are important in normal physiology and also during a range of pathological states. Only recently has their role in cardiovascular disease been explored and their analysis through measurements in blood been studied.

We have systematically identified clinical articles relevant to coronary artery disease from the last 10 years using MEDLINE. In this review we outline the structure, function and regulation of metalloproteinases and their key roles in angiogenesis, stable and unstable coronary artery disease.

Metalloproteinases and their inhibitors are fundamental mediators of change in aging and atherosclerosis, the cell membrane, and in myocardial and vascular tissue. Defining their overall importance and understanding their complex interrelationships with pressure, thrombosis and local neural and hormonal tone will require detailed clinical study. The modulation of MMP and TIMP activity using drugs that affect the expression and function of these proteins will provide us with new ways to treat these serious and disabling diseases, and we explore potential mechanisms and treatments.
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Keywords: atherosclerosis; coronary artery disease; extra cellular matrix; matrix metalloproteinases; tissue inhibitor of matrix metalloproteinase

Document Type: Review Article

Affiliations: University Department of Medicine, City Hospital NHS Trust, Dudley Road, Birmingham B18 7QU, United Kingdom.

Publication date: 01 April 2005

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  • Current Medicinal Chemistry covers all the latest and outstanding developments in medicinal chemistry and rational drug design. Each issue contains a series of timely in-depth reviews written by leaders in the field covering a range of the current topics in medicinal chemistry. Current Medicinal Chemistry is an essential journal for every medicinal chemist who wishes to be kept informed and up-to-date with the latest and most important developments.
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