Adalat pp 167-168 | Cite as

Arterial Calcium Overload: A Cardinal Element in the Development of Arteriosclerosis and Vasoprotection with Calcium Antagonists

  • A. Fleckenstein
  • M. Frey
  • F. Thimm
  • G. Fleckenstein-Grün
Conference paper


At present, the antiarteriosclerotic efficacy of calcium (Ca) antagonists, first described in 1971 [1] and subsequently analyzed in a multitude of experimental models on rats by Fleckenstein and coworkers [2–6], is increasingly gaining interest. It is a well-known fact that in arterial walls that are altered by sclerotic processes, two main constituents accumulate: lipids (particularly cholesterol) and Ca. However, the accumulation of lipids has long been incriminated as the primordial pathogenic factor, whereas the concomitant arterial Ca overload was considered a phenomenon of secondary importance. This is rather puzzling, because in 1913, the same year as Anitschkow [7] first produced atheromatous lesions in cholesterol-fed rabbits, Katase [8] depicted calcific incrustation and subsequent destruction of the internal elastic membrane in the arterial walls of guinea pigs and rabbits injected with soluble calcium salts. But Anitschkow’s cholesterol-fed rabbits overshadowed Katase’s observations completely.


Calcium Antagonist Human Coronary Artery Atheromatous Lesion Internal Elastic Membrane Calcium Antagonism 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. Fleckenstein
    • 1
  • M. Frey
    • 1
  • F. Thimm
    • 1
  • G. Fleckenstein-Grün
    • 1
  1. 1.Study Group for Calcium Antagonism Physiological InstituteUniversity of FreiburgFreiburgGermany

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