Vascular Biology and Disease
Vascular biology research in CBA encompasses a range of topics, from studies of atherosclerotic plaque growth and stability in large arteries to understanding the molecular mechanisms underlying formation of new capillaries, the tiniest vessels. Angiogenesis, or new capillary growth, has both therapeutic and pathological aspects. While angiogenesis is essential during development and in physiological processes such as wound healing, dysregulated angiogenesis permits tumor growth and can lead to harmful complications in diseases such as diabetes and atherosclerosis.
Atherosclerosis is a process involving the accumulation of cholesterol, cells and other substances in the walls of arteries to form plaques. It is the primary cause of heart attack and stroke, the No. 1 and No. 3 killers in the United States. Atherosclerosis is a complex, multifactorial and chronic condition. Currently it is believed to be both a cholesterol deposit disorder and a chronic inflammatory disease. Several faculty at the School of Medicine are performing research to unravel the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying atherogenesis and to develop strategies to prevent and treat atherosclerosis.