Hardening of the arteries is called atherosclerosis.
The health condition occurs when fat, cholesterol and other substances build up in the walls of arteries.
The plaques narrow or block the arteries and cause problems in the body, such as dementia, heart disease, high blood pressure, and stroke.
Previous research has shown that the condition can happen to everyone as they get old, and can develop fasts in patients on dialysis, where even children can have calcified arteries.
In a recent study from the University of Cambridge and other institutes, researchers have discovered the cause of hardening of the arteries.
They have found the mechanism behind hardening of the arteries and shown that a generic drug used to treat acne may help treat the condition.
The study is published in the journal Cell Reports. Its leader was Professor Melinda Duer from Cambridge’s Department of Chemistry.
The team showed that a molecule once thought only to exist inside cells for the purpose of repairing DNA is also responsible for hardening of the arteries.
They tested rats with chronic kidney disease and found that minocycline, a widely used antibiotic to treat acne, could treat hardening of the arteries.
This drug could prevent the build-up of calcium in the circulatory system and be highly effective in preventing artery hardening.
The researchers say it can be a potential treatment to reduce blood vessel calcification without any negative effects on bone.
The new finding has been patented and licensed to Cycle Pharmaceuticals by Cambridge Enterprise, the University’s commercialization arm.
In the future, the team plans to test the drug treatment in patients in the next 12 to 18 months.
The new treatment, if successful, may benefit many people and prevent many diseases from happening.
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