Author(s): Shah PK, Chyu KY, Fredrikson GN, Nilsson J
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Abstract Experimental observations have established that the innate and adaptive immune mechanisms both have roles in the modulation of atherosclerosis. The complex function that the immune system has in the pathophysiology of atherosclerosis is highlighted by the fact that both proatherogenic and atheroprotective effects of immune activation can be demonstrated. An immune response to the protein and lipid components of oxidized LDL cholesterol has been observed in experimental models, and immunization with these antigens has generally reduced atherosclerosis. The findings suggest the tantalizing possibility that an atheroprotective vaccine can be developed. Our laboratories have identified several antigenic epitopes in the human apolipoprotein B100 component of LDL cholesterol. Active immunization with some of these epitopes has reduced atherosclerosis in hyperlipidemic mice. We believe, therefore, that a vaccine based on apolipoprotein B100-related peptide could have a role in reducing atherosclerosis. In this review, we discuss the possible immunologic mechanisms by which vaccines against atherosclerosis might work and the ways in which such treatment might be most effectively administered.
This article was published in Nat Clin Pract Cardiovasc Med
and referenced in Journal of Metabolic Syndrome