Restenosis after coronary angioplasty. Potential biologic determinants and role of intimal hyperplasia.
Restenosis after successful PTCA remains a major problem limiting the efficacy of the procedure. The pathophysiologic mechanism of restenosis has been enigmatic so far, but accumulated evidence strongly suggests that intimal hyperplasia is the major mechanism. Based on current understanding of the process of intimal hyperplasia, one unifying concept may be that there are at least two major local biologic determinants influencing this process, lesion characteristics and regional flow dynamics. Lesion characteristics include the plaque structure and the quantity of smooth muscle. These may provide the anatomic substrate that determines the extent of injury and the degree of smooth muscle cell proliferation. The amount of smooth muscle cells in the stenotic lesion activated by injury to undergo proliferation may determine the eventual bulk of the restenotic lesion. In addition, low wall shear stress could promote intimal hyperplasia and cause structural change of vessels to decrease the lumen, whereas high wall shear stress exerts the opposite effects. Intimal hyperplasia after balloon injury is a complex process involving platelets, growth factors, endothelial cells, smooth muscle cells, mechanical injury, wall shear stress, and probably other unknown factors. Platelets not only contribute growth factors such as PDGF but also cause organized thrombus. Different growth factors may be involved in initiating smooth muscle cell proliferation and may come from many different sources, including smooth muscle cells, endothelial cells, and macrophages. Intact confluent endothelial cells may produce heparin sulfates and inhibit intimal proliferation; however, regenerating endothelial cells may have the opposite effect. Thus, the proliferative potential of smooth muscle cells, endothelial recovery, extent of injury, wall shear stress, and other unknown factors may all influence this process. Based on these concepts concerning the biology of restenosis, some research directions concerning potential forms of therapy are proposed.
- Copyright © 1989 by American Heart Association