Photodynamic therapy for the treatment of atherosclerotic plaque: Lost in translation?

Acute coronary syndrome is a life-threatening condition of utmost clinical importance, which, despite recent progress in the field, is still associated with high morbidity and mortality. Acute coronary syndrome results from a rupture or erosion of vulnerable atherosclerotic plaque with secondary platelet activation and thrombus formation, which leads to partial or complete luminal obstruction of a coronary artery. During the last decade, scientific evidence demonstrated that when an acute coronary event occurs, several nonculprit plaques are in a vulnerable state. Among the promising approaches, several investigations provided evidence of photodynamic therapy (PDT)-induced stabilization and regression of atherosclerotic plaque. Significant development of PDT strategies improved its therapeutic outcome. This review addresses PDT's pertinence and major problems/challenges toward its translation to a clinical reality.


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