Variety matters: Diverse functions of monocyte subtypes in vascular inflammation and atherogenesis

Vascul Pharmacol. 2019 Feb;113:9-19. doi: 10.1016/j.vph.2018.12.002. Epub 2018 Dec 12.


Monocytes are important mediators of the innate immunity by recognizing and attacking especially bacterial pathogens but also play crucial roles in various inflammatory diseases, including vascular inflammation and atherosclerosis. Maturation, differentiation and function of monocytes have been intensively explored for a long time in innumerable experimental and clinical studies. Monocytes do not represent a uniform cell type but could be further subdivided into subpopulations with distinct features and functions. Those subpopulations have been identified in experimental mouse models as well as in humans, albeit distinguished by different cell surface markers. While Ly6C is used for subpopulation differentiation in mice, corresponding human subsets are differentiated by CD14 and CD16. In this review, we specifically focused on new experimental insights from recent years mainly in regard to murine monocyte subpopulations and their roles in vascular inflammation und atherogenesis.

Keywords: Atherosclerosis; Ly6C; Murine monocyte subpopulations; Vascular inflammation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Atherosclerosis / immunology*
  • Atherosclerosis / metabolism
  • Biomarkers / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Inflammation Mediators / immunology
  • Inflammation Mediators / metabolism
  • Mice
  • Monocytes / classification
  • Monocytes / immunology*
  • Monocytes / metabolism
  • Phenotype
  • Vasculitis / immunology*
  • Vasculitis / metabolism


  • Biomarkers
  • Inflammation Mediators