Role of Antioxidants for the Treatment of Cardiovascular Diseases: Challenges and Opportunities

Curr Pharm Des. 2015;21(30):4441-55. doi: 10.2174/1381612821666150803151758.


Cardiovascular disorders or cardiovascular diseases (CVD) are major illness associated with heart and blood vessels. Reactive oxygen species (ROS), generated during excessive oxidative stress, are responsible for the pathophysiology of various cardiovascular disorders including atherosclerosis, cardiac hypertrophy, cardiomyopathy, heart failure, ventricular remodeling, ischemia/reperfusion injury and myocardial infarction. Cellular "redox homeostasis" generally maintains the healthy physiology in cardiac myocytes and endothelial cells. However, during excessive oxidative stress body's endogenous system fails to maintain normal physiology hence antioxidant supplementation is necessary, which could scavenge the free radicals and other toxic radicals. Several antioxidants such as CoQ10, beta carotene, lycopene, quercetin, reserveterol, vitamin C and vitamin E have shown preventive and therapeutic benefits in different forms of CVD. However, poor biopharmaceutical properties and variable pharmacokinetics of several antioxidants limits their use as therapeutic agents. Hence delivery of stable antioxidants at their site of action is a need of current scenario. Several novel carriers based approaches have shown considerable benefits for the systemic and site specific delivery of antioxidants for the preventive and therapeutic treatment of several cardiovascular diseases. In the present review, conventional as well as novel antioxidants have been discussed with special emphasis for the treatment of CVD. Further, the current review also highlights the critical challenges for antioxidant delivery and various novel carriers (nanoformulations) including, liposomes and nanoparticles explored for their efficient delivery in the therapeutic management of CVD.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antioxidants / chemistry
  • Antioxidants / metabolism
  • Antioxidants / therapeutic use*
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / drug therapy*
  • Drug Carriers / chemistry
  • Humans
  • Nanomedicine
  • Nanoparticles / chemistry


  • Antioxidants
  • Drug Carriers