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Journal Articles The Journal of clinical investigation Year : 2024

Pathophysiology of cerebral small vessel disease: a journey through recent discoveries

Abstract

Cerebral small vessel disease (cSVD) encompasses a heterogeneous group of age-related small vessel pathologies that affect multiple regions. Disease manifestations range from lesions incidentally detected on neuroimaging (white matter hyperintensities, small deep infarcts, microbleeds, or enlarged perivascular spaces) to severe disability and cognitive impairment. cSVD accounts for approximately 25% of ischemic strokes and the vast majority of spontaneous intracerebral hemorrhage and is also the most important vascular contributor to dementia. Despite its high prevalence and potentially long therapeutic window, there are still no mechanism-based treatments. Here, we provide an overview of the recent advances in this field. We summarize recent data highlighting the remarkable continuum between monogenic and multifactorial cSVDs involving NOTCH3, HTRA1, and COL4A1/A2 genes. Taking a vessel-centric view, we discuss possible cause-and-effect relationships between risk factors, structural and functional vessel changes, and disease manifestations, underscoring some major knowledge gaps. Although endothelial dysfunction is rightly considered a central feature of cSVD, the contributions of smooth muscle cells, pericytes, and other perivascular cells warrant continued investigation.
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inserm-04604399 , version 1 (07-06-2024)

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Nicolas Dupré, Antoine Drieu, Anne Joutel. Pathophysiology of cerebral small vessel disease: a journey through recent discoveries. The Journal of clinical investigation, 2024, 134 (10), pp.e172841. ⟨10.1172/jci172841⟩. ⟨inserm-04604399⟩

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