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Neopterin: From Forgotten Biomarker to Leading Actor in Cardiovascular Pathophysiology

[ Vol. 9 , Issue. 2 ]


Salvatore De Rosa, Plinio Cirillo, Mario Pacileo, Gianluca Petrillo, Greta-Luana D'Ascoli, Fabio Maresca, Francesca Ziviello and Massimo Chiariello   Pages 188 - 199 ( 12 )


Inflammation plays a role at all stages of atherosclerosis. Neopterin, a pteridine mainly synthesized by activated macrophages, is a marker of inflammation, immune system activation and an active participant in cardiovascular disease. Measurement of neopterin levels may help follow the evolution of specific inflammatory conditions (e.g. viral infection, renal transplant rejection, systemic inflammatory diseases, nephritic syndrome and autoimmune diseases). Serum levels of neopterin are elevated also in patients with coronary artery disease (CAD) and peripheral artery disease (PAD). Moreover, plasma levels of this molecule might predict adverse cardiovascular events in patients with CAD, acute coronary syndromes or severe PAD. In addition, neopterin levels are related to the development of heart failure. We provide an updated overview on neopterin and, its links with CAD, left ventricular dysfunction, and PAD. We also describe its potential role in cardiac regenerative strategies with using bone marrow cells.


Atherosclerosis, cardiovascular disease, inflammation, neopterin


Department of Internal Medicine, Cardiovascular and Immunological Sciences (Division of Cardiology), University of Naples “Federico II”, Via Sergio Pansini 5, 80131 Naples, Italy.

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