The glycoprotein IIb-IIIa (GPIIb-IIIa) receptor inhibitors have established themselves as first line therapy in the treatment of acute coronary syndromes (ACS) and percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI). The benefit of these agents rests in their ability to attenuate the deleterious effects of platelet activation, both at the site of an inflamed vessel wall (due to a ruptured plaque or PCI) and in the microcirculation as a result of embolization. Based on these results, interventional radiologists are beginning to explore the potential of using GPIIb-IIIa inhibitors during interventions in the peripheral circulation. This paper reviews the molecular biology of the GPIIb-IIIa receptor, the pharmacology of the GPIIb-IIIa receptor inhibitors, the current coronary and peripheral vascular literature as it pertains to the GPIIb-IIIa receptor inhibitors, and potential future applications of the GPIIb-IIIa receptor inhibitors in the peripheral circulation.
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View details for PubMedID 11907740