Oxidative stress, in recent times, appears to be a major underlying risk factor in the occurrence of major diseases such as cardiovascular diseases (CVD) and inflammatory diseases. During oxidative stress, an overall dysfunction of the balance between the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and the antioxidant defence mechanism occurs and a shift is obtained in favour of ROS production. Consequently, this may cause severe molecular, cellular and histological damage of the heart and vascular membranes in both animal and human living system which may lead to more serious complications. Previous studies proposed that reactive oxygen species represent at a molecular basis a key aspect in the pathogenesis of endothelial dysfunction and atherosclerosis which in fact constitute major underlying pathologies of most CVD. In this review, we discuss the role of reactive oxygen species in the pathogenesis of cardiovascular disease.
Key words: Cardiovascular disease, reactive oxygen species, inflammation.
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