Protein 'reverses atherosclerosis'

Treating blood vessels with bone-altering proteins could prevent and even reverse the hardening that causes fatal heart disease, according to a study.

(Photo: FREDERICK C. SKVARA, MD/VISUALS UNLIMITED, INC. /SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY)
(Photo: FREDERICK C. SKVARA, MD/VISUALS UNLIMITED, INC. /SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY)

Researchers used the protein PPARy to induce the lining of arteries in mice to produce calcium-removing cells similar to those usually found in bones.

The study found that this reduced calcification that can lead to deadly atherosclerosis.

The authors said the findings could lead to new drug treatments.

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