Background: Atherosclerosis (AS) is a major cause of death and morbidity in
Western world and is strongly connected with atherogenic lipoproteins and inflammation.
Bile acids (BA) act as activating signals of endogenous ligands such as Farnesoid-X receptor
(FXR). Primary data indicate a potential role of FXR in AS. The therapeutic value of FXR
ligands in AS is unknown.
Objective: With the present review, we analyzed the efficacy of FXR agonists as a therapeutic
modalities against AS. In this aspect, we performed an electronic search through Pub-
Med/MEDLINE database by using the key terms: FXR*, Farnesoid X receptor*, atherosclerosis*,
bile acids* and agonism*.
Conclusion: According to our analysis, the FXR seems to be a promising therapeutic target in
the atherosclerosis natural history. FXR agonism could exert protective effects in the development
and evolution of AS. However, concomitant side effects such as the reduction of
plasma HDL have been reported. Finally, results from undergoing clinical trials with synthetic
FXR agonists will shed more light to the precise role of FXR agonism in AS treatment.