News & AnalysisCARDIOVASCULAR DISEASE

Massive Trials to Test Inflammation Hypothesis

Science  07 Sep 2012:
Vol. 337, Issue 6099, pp. 1158
DOI: 10.1126/science.337.6099.1158

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Summary

More than 20 years ago, cardiologist Paul Ridker of Brigham and Women's Hospital began nurturing the idea that inflammation is deeply intertwined with cardiovascular disease. Ridker has never been able to prove that the body's inflammatory response causes heart attacks—or that blocking it can save lives. But he has built his case bit by bit. Now, his theory is being put to the test in a pair of massive clinical trials, both of which he's heading. One was launched last year by Novartis, and the other was announced last month by the U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.