Dual pathway inhibition in patients with atherosclerotic disease: pharmacodynamic considerations and clinical implications

Mattia Galli, Francesco Franchi, Fabiana Rollini, Luis Ortega-Paz, Domenico D’Amario, Raffaele De Caterina, Roxana Mehran, C. Michael Gibson, Dominick J. Angiolillo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Introduction: The persistence of elevated rates of ischemic recurrences despite the use of antiplatelet therapy among patients with atherosclerotic disease together with the understanding of the pivotal role of coagulation in the thrombo-inflammatory processes involved in the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis and its complications has fostered the development of treatments targeting both platelets and coagulation, a strategy known as dual-pathway inhibition (DPI). Areas covered: In this review we discuss the recent advancements in the understanding of the interplay between coagulation, platelets and inflammation involved in the pathophysiology of atherosclerosis and atherothrombosis, as the rationale for the implementation of a DPI strategy. We also discuss the available pharmacodynamic (PD) evidence and clinical implications with the use of DPI in patients with atherosclerotic disease. Expert opinion: The implementation of a DPI by adding the so-called ‘vascular dose of rivaroxaban’ (i.e. 2.5 mg bis in die), on top of antiplatelet therapy has consistently been associated with reduced levels of thrombin generation in PD studies and with reduced ischemic event rates at the cost of increased bleeding compared to antiplatelet therapy alone. Further research is warranted to best define patients in whom a DPI regimen has the best safety and efficacy profile.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)27-38
Number of pages12
JournalExpert Review of Clinical Pharmacology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2023


  • Dual-pathway inhibition
  • aspirin
  • atherosclerotic disease
  • clopidogrel
  • dual antiplatelet therapy
  • pharmacodynamic
  • rivaroxaban
  • ticagrelor


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