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Volha I Summerhill, Vasily N Sukhorukov, Ali H Eid, Ludmila V Nedosugova, Igor A Sobenin, Alexander N Orekhov

Biomol Concepts. 2021 Jun 11;12(1):55-67. doi: 10.1515/bmc-2021-0007.


Abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) is a complex degenerative vascular disease, with considerable morbidity and mortality rates among the elderly population. The mortality of AAA is related to aneurysm expansion (the enlargement of the aortic diameter up to 30 mm and above) and the subsequent rupture. The pathogenesis of AAA involves several biological processes, including aortic mural inflammation, oxidative stress, vascular smooth muscle cell apoptosis, elastin depletion, and degradation of the extracellular matrix. Mitochondrial dysfunction was also found to be associated with AAA formation. The evidence accumulated to date supports a close relationship between environmental and genetic factors in AAA initiation and progression. However, a comprehensive pathophysiological understanding of AAA formation remains incomplete. The open surgical repair of AAA is the only therapeutic option currently available, while a specific pharmacotherapy is still awaited. Therefore, there is a great need to clarify pathophysiological cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying AAA formation that would help to develop effective pharmacological therapies. In this review, pathophysiological aspects of AAA development with a special focus on mitochondrial dysfunction and genetic associations were discussed.


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