Chlamydia pneumoniae is a human respiratory pathogen that causes acute respiratory disease. Multiple studies have associated C. pneumoniae with cardiovascular disease including seroepidemiologic studies, direct detection of the organism within the lesion, and isolation of the organism from atheromatous tissue. The most critical question to be answered by researchers in the field is whether C. pneumoniae plays a role in atherogenesis. This review summarizes in vitro studies, results in animal models of C. pneumoniae infection and atherogenesis, and human intervention studies that provide some support of a mechanistic role.
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