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Office for Translational Research



Low dose interleukin-2 in patients with stable ischaemic heart disease and acute coronary syndromes (LILACS).

Coronary artery disease (CAD) represents a major cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide, therefore there is considerable need for new therapies to limit it. This project builds on solid pre-clinical research and novel therapeutic concepts developed by the applicants to target the immune response in patients with CAD. We have shown that the development and progression of atherosclerosis are promoted by an imbalance between pro-atherogenic Th1 effector and anti-atherogenic T regulatory (Treg) cells. This study proposes to re-establish a healthy immune balance in CAD patients through promotion of Treg cells using low-dose interleukin (IL)-2.

The researchers hypothesise that low doses of IL-2 in patients with stable ischaemic heart disease, as well as in those with acute coronary syndrome, can increase Treg number and function, and ultimately promote plaque stabilisation and myocardial healing (this will be further addressed in future studies). In this context, it may improve patient recovery and limit the occurrence/recurrence of major clinical events.