Nicotinic acetylcholine receptor α7 subunit: a novel therapeutic target for cardiovascular diseases.Front Med. 2012 Mar; 6(1):35-40.FM
Inflammation is important in the pathogenesis and development of cardiovascular diseases. Recent studies show that vagus nerve stimulation inhibits pro-inflammatory cytokine production through "the cholinergic anti-inflammatory pathway," more specifically via the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7nAChR). In the current study, the role of the cholinergic anti-inflammatory pathway during septic shock, hypertension, and myocardial infarction is reviewed, and its possible clinical implications in cardiovascular diseases are discussed.