Cardiovascular Toxicology

, Volume 19, Issue 1, pp 13–22 | Cite as

Endothelial Cells: From Dysfunction Mechanism to Pharmacological Effect in Cardiovascular Disease

  • Habib Haybar
  • Saeid Shahrabi
  • Hadi Rezaeeyan
  • Reza Shirzad
  • Najmaldin SakiEmail author


Endothelial cells (ECs) are the innermost layer of blood vessels that play important roles in homeostasis and vascular function. However, recent evidence suggests that the onset of inflammation and the production of reactive oxygen species impair the function of ECs and are a main factor in the development of cardiovascular disease (CVD). In this study, we investigated the effects of inflammatory markers, oxidative stress, and treatment on ECs in CVD patients. This review article is based on the material obtained from PubMed up to 2018. The key search terms used were “Cardiovascular Disease,” “Endothelial Cell Dysfunction,” “Inflammation,” “Treatment,” and “Oxidative Stress.” The generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) as well as reduced nitric oxide (NO) production by ECs impairs the function of blood vessels. Therefore, treatment of CVD patients leads to the expression of transcription factors activating anti-oxidant mechanisms and NO production. In contrast, NO production by inflammatory agents can cause ECs repair due to differentiation of endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs). Therefore, identifying the molecular pathways leading to the differentiation of EPCs through mediation of factors induced by inflammatory factors can be effective in regenerative medicine for ECs repair.


Cardiovascular diseases Endothelial cell dysfunction Inflammation Oxidative stress 



Nuclear factor kappa-light-chain-enhancer of activated B cells




Endothelial cell






Cardiovascular disease


Heart failure


Reactive oxygen species


Nitric oxide


Vascular endothelial growth factor


Low-density lipoprotein


Scavenger receptor-A


Endoplasmic reticulum



We wish to thank all our colleagues in Allied Health Sciences School, Ahvaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences.

Author Contributions

NS conceived the manuscript and revised it. HH, SS, HR, and RS wrote the manuscript.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Research Involving Human Participants and/or Animals

This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Atherosclerosis Research CenterAhvaz Jundishapur University of Medical SciencesAhvazIran
  2. 2.Department of Biochemistry and Hematology, Faculty of MedicineSemnan University of Medical SciencesSemnanIran
  3. 3.Thalassemia and Hemoglobinopathy Research Center, Research Institute of HealthAhvaz Jundishapur University of Medical SciencesAhvazIran

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