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Antiplatelet Therapy in Patients with Diabetes Mellitus

[ Vol. 10 , Issue. 4 ]


Erik L. Grove and Soren Gregersen   Pages 494 - 505 ( 12 )


Platelets are key players in arterial thrombosis, and oral antiplatelet therapy is a cornerstone in the treatment and prevention of cardiovascular events. However, although currently approved antiplatelet drugs have proved successful in reducing cardiovascular events, platelet-dependent thrombosis remains an important cause of morbidity and mortality in patients with coronary artery disease. It is well-known that patients with diabetes mellitus (DM) have an increased risk of cardiovascular events and, therefore, understanding the mechanism of action and safety profile of antiplatelet drugs in this high-risk population is of particular interest. There is considerable inter-individual variation in the efficacy of established antiplatelet drugs, and high on-treatment platelet reactivity is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular events, thus prompting the search for novel drugs against platelet-dependent thrombosis. New antiplatelet treatment strategies include drugs with more efficient and reversible platelet inhibition. This review discusses selective inhibitors of the platelet cyclooxygenase enzyme, thienopyridine and non-thienopyridine inhibitors of the platelet adenosine diphosphate receptor, phosphodiesterase inhibitors, and protease-activated receptor antagonists. An overview of currently available antiplatelet drugs is provided, focusing on benefits and limitations in patients with DM. Furthermore, the rationale for new oral antiplatelet drugs under development is discussed with particular focus on the potential role of these drugs to improve cardiovascular outcomes in patients with DM.


Aspirin, coronary artery disease, diabetes mellitus, platelet aggregation inhibitors, prasugrel, platelets, ticagrelor, cyclooxygenase, thrombosis


Department of Cardiology, Aarhus University Hospital, Skejby, Brendstrupgaardsvej 100, 8200 Aarhus, Denmark.

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