The Oxidative Stress Menace to Coronary Vasculature: Any Place for Antioxidants?
Pp. 61-95 (35)
Alexandros Briasoulis, Charalampos Antoniades, George-Angelo Papamikroulis, Evangelos Oikonomou and Dimitris Tousoulis
Oxidative stress occurs due to the combination of excess reactive oxygen
species and insufficient antioxidant capacity. Oxidative stress has been correlated with
endothelial dysfunction, the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis as well as with high
incidence of cardiovascular disease. A variety of antioxidants has been studied, during the
past few years, for the prevention and treatment of atherosclerosis. Early observational
studies, focusing on dietary antioxidants, demonstrate an inverse association between
antioxidant intake and major cardiovascular events, and supported a number of largescale,
randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trials, which investigated the effect of
selected antioxidant therapies on primary and secondary cardiovascular prevention.
However, the findings appear controversial, since disappointing results have been
reported from many studies with little or no decrease in cardiovascular risk while others
showed significant reduction of the oxidative stress and improvement of endothelial
function. A few rational explanations of these controversial findings have been
proposed and should be taken into account in future clinical studies. This chapter
provides contemporary data concerning pathophysiology of oxidative stress, its relation
to atherogenesis and the potential role of antioxidant therapy in reducing cardiovascular
risk via primary and secondary prevention.
Antioxidants, atherosclerosis, cardiovascular risk, clinical trial,
Coronary Artery Disease, diet, endothelial dysfunction, free radicals, hyperlipidemia,
hypertension, inflammatory markers, nitric oxide, oxidase enzymes,
oxidative markers, oxidative stress, patients, primary prevention, reactive oxygen
species, secondary prevention, supplementation, vitamins
University of Athens Medical School, Vas.Sophias 114, Athens, Greece.