Thrombosis and anticoagulation.
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Most of the major advances in thrombosis research have occurred in the last 50 years, reflecting progress in biomedical sciences and clinical trials methodology. Improved understanding of the mechanisms of thrombogenesis has led to the discovery of a plethora of new antithrombotic agents that target many of the key steps in blood coagulation and platelet activation. Although most of these compounds are still under development, low-molecular-weight heparins (LMWH), glycoprotein (GP) IIb/IIIa receptor antagonists, and inhibitors of the adenosine diphosphate (ADP) receptor on platelets have already established their niche in the clinic. The vessel wall has emerged as a major player, both in protecting against and in promoting thrombosis, and as we approach the new millennium, compounds are being developed that have the potential to prevent and treat thrombosis by modulating vessel wall function.
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