The Role of Statins in the Activation of Heme Oxygenase-1 in Cardiovascular Diseases
Cardiovascular diseases (CVD) are associated with the dysfunction of endothelium that regulates
the contractile state of vascular walls and cellular composition. Recent large clinical trials indicated
that lipid-modifying interventions decrease the risk of CVD in patients with hypercholesterolemia
and in those with relatively normal levels of LDL cholesterol. They also highlighted lipid-independent
role of well-established lipid-lowering drugs- statins- which inhibit 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl coenzyme
A (HMG-CoA) reductase and are used in the treatment of hypercholesterolemia and reduction of
atherosclerosis. Novel therapeutic approaches of statins include their influence on heme oxygenase 1
(HO-1) and HO-1 related signaling pathways such as activator protein (AP)-1, protein kinase G (PKG),
extracellular matrix-regulated kinase (ERK), p38 MAPK or NFκB in vascular wall cells. This review
aimed to describe the molecular mechanisms involved in the induction of HO-1 under different statins
in the most common CVD.
Keywords: Abdominal aortic aneurysm, antioxidants, atherosclerosis, cardiac diseases, cardiovascular diseases, heme oxygenase-
1, oxidative stress, statins.
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