Metabolic syndrome (MetS) is a cluster of risk factors for atherosclerosis, including abdominal obesity, hypertension, insulin resistance, dyslipidemia with high triglycerides, and low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol. Affected patients have a significantly increased risk of developing cardiovascular disorders (CVD), that are the leading cause of death in the Western countries. Several epidemiological studies have investigated the evolution of CVD hypothesizing the presence of a gender difference in the pathogenetic and progression determinants detectable in men and women. In this chapter, we will examine new gender-associated bioindicators of possible diagnostic or prognostic value in the MetS. Moreover, we will provide an overview on current knowledge on sex-associated cardiovascular determinants with the aim to improve CVD diagnostic and prognostic clinical courses and to develop new and gender-biased prevention strategies.
Part of the book: Carotid Artery
Kawasaki disease (KD) is a rare and often undiagnosed disease, at least in the western countries. Although its etiology remains unidentified, epidemiological features point to the role of infection and genetic predisposition. KD is characterized by an inflammatory acute febrile vasculitis. Coronary artery involvement is the most important complication of KD and may cause significant coronary stenosis resulting in ischemic heart disease. It has been demonstrated that the major risks in KD progression are the endothelial dysfunction and that systemic oxidative stress together with premature aging of red blood cells and alteration of platelet homeostasis, could play a critical role in the cardiovascular complications associated with KD. This chapter will focus on the role of oxidative stress in endothelial damage and on circulating blood cells of KD patients.
Part of the book: Free Radical Medicine and Biology