Arterial aging: A journey into subclinical arterial disease

Mingyi Wang, Robert E. Monticone, Edward G. Lakatta

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Purpose of Review: Age-associated arterial alterations in cells, matrix, and biomolecules are the foundation for the initiation and progression of cardiovascular diseases in older persons. This review focuses on the latest advances on the intertwining of aging and disease within the arterial wall at the cell and molecular levels. Recent Findings: Endothelial dysfunction, vascular smooth muscle cell (VSMC) proliferation/invasion/secretion, matrix fragmentation, collagenization and glycation are characteristics of an age-associated arterial phenotype that creates a microenvironment enriched with reactive oxygen species (ROS) for the pathogenesis of arterial disease. This niche creates an age-associated arterial secretory phenotype (AAASP), which is orchestrated by the concerted effects of numerous age-modified angiotensin II signaling molecules. Most of these biomolecular, cell, and matrix modifications that constitute the AAASP can be elicited by experimental hypertension or atherosclerosis at a younger age. The arterial AAASP also shares features of a senescence-associated secretory phenotype (SASP) identified in other mesenchymocytes, that is, fibroblasts. Summary: A subclinical AAASP evolves during aging. Targeting this subclinical AAASP may reduce the incidence and progression of the quintessential age-associated arterial diseases, that is, hypertension and atherosclerosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)201-207
Number of pages7
JournalCurrent opinion in nephrology and hypertension
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Angiotensin II
  • Arterial aging
  • Arterial disease

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Nephrology


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