Thromb Haemost 2017; 117(07): 1258-1264
DOI: 10.1160/TH16-10-0814
60th Anniversary
Schattauer GmbH

Therapeutic strategies for atherosclerosis and atherothrombosis: Past, present and future

Christian Weber
1  Institute for Cardiovascular Prevention, Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich, Munich, Germany
2  DZHK (German Centre for Cardiovascular Research), partner site Munich Heart Alliance, Germany
3  Cardiovascular Research Institute Maastricht (CARIM), Maastricht University, Maastricht, The Netherlands
Lina Badimon
4  Cardiovascular Research Center, Catalan Institute of Cardiovascular Science, Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau, Barcelona, Spain
Francois Mach
5  Cardiology Division, Geneva University Hospital, Geneva, Switzerland
Emiel P. C. van der Vorst
1  Institute for Cardiovascular Prevention, Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich, Munich, Germany
› Author Affiliations
Further Information

Publication History

Received: 27 October 2016

Accepted after minor revision: 10 June 2016

Publication Date:
11 November 2017 (online)


Even two centuries after they were first described, atherosclerosis and atherothrombosis remain among the leading causes of death worldwide. Over the last decades it has become clear that atherosclerosis is not only a lipid-driven disease but also a multifactorial process largely driven by inflammatory mediators, an insight that has instigated additional research and drug development focussing on anti-inflammatory therapies. In this review, we will provide a brief historical overview, followed by a more general synopsis of the range of currently available state-of-the-art therapies for atherosclerosis and atherothrombosis. Finally, we will highlight some of the promising therapeutic strategies that are currently under intense investigation. We believe that the next years will witness highly interesting developments and clinical trials investigating yet more novel therapies, and at the same time looking into potential combinations of all available therapies. This prospect closes in on the ultimate goal, which is to reduce the residual risk that still persists despite present therapeutic options.