Date Published: October 1, 2017
Publisher: JKL International LLC
Author(s): Xianglai Xu, Brian Wang, Changhong Ren, Jiangnan Hu, David A. Greenberg, Tianxiang Chen, Liping Xie, Kunlin Jin.
Among age-related diseases, cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases are major causes of death. Vascular dysfunction is a key characteristic of these diseases wherein age is an independent and essential risk factor. The present work will review morphological alterations of aging vessels in-depth, which includes the discussion of age-related microvessel loss and changes to vasculature involving the capillary basement membrane, intima, media, and adventitia as well as the accompanying vascular dysfunctions arising from these alterations.
The structural effects of aging lead ultimately to vascular dysfunction, which can be attributed to vascular stiffness, impaired endothelial function and increased BBB permeability.
Aging modifies the structures of blood vessels even down to the level of the capillary basement membrane. These structural alterations can then lead to vascular stiffness, impaired endothelial function and increased BBB permeability. A thorough study of the underlying mechanisms and key mediators of these age-related vascular dysfunctions would be beneficial in the search for potential interventions.