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Biologics and Cardiovascular Disease

Van Taunay, John S., MD*; Albelda, M. Teresa, PhD; Frias, Juan Carlos, PhD; Lipinski, Michael J., MD, PhD*

Journal of Cardiovascular Pharmacology: August 2018 - Volume 72 - Issue 2 - p 77–85
doi: 10.1097/FJC.0000000000000595
Drugs in the Pipeline

Abstract: The advent of biologic therapy has enhanced our ability to augment disease in an increasingly targeted manner. The use of biologics in cardiovascular disease (CVD) has steadily increased over the past several decades. Much of the early data on biologics and CVD were derived from their use in rheumatologic populations. Atherosclerosis, myocardial infarction, and heart failure have been closely linked to the inflammatory response. Accordingly, cytokines such as tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-alpha and interleukin (IL)-1 have been targeted. Noninflammatory mediators, such as proprotein convertase subtilisin kexin type 9 (PCSK9), have been selected for therapeutic intervention as well. Furthermore, RNA interference (RNAi) therapy has emerged and may serve as another targeted therapeutic mechanism. Herein, we will review the history, obstacles, and advances in using biologic therapy for CVD.

*MedStar Heart and Vascular Institute, MedStar Washington Hospital Center, Washington, DC;

GIBI 230, Hospital Universitario y Politécnico La Fe, Valencia, Spain; and

Departamento de Ciencias Biomédicas, Universidad Cardenal Herrera-CEU, CEU University, Valencia, Spain.

Reprints: Michael J. Lipinski, MD, PhD, MedStar Washington Hospital Center, 110 Irving St. NW, Suite 4B1, Washington, DC 20010 (e-mail:

The authors report no conflicts of interest.

Received December 13, 2017

Accepted April 19, 2018

Copyright © 2018 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.