Coronary artery disease (CAD) remains one of the most important causes of morbidity and mortality worldwide, and the availability of percutaneous or surgical revascularization procedures significantly improves survival. However, both strategies are daunted by complications which limit long-term effectiveness. In-stent restenosis is a major drawback for intracoronary stenting, while graft failure is the limiting factor for coronary artery bypass graft surgery (CABG), especially using veins. Conversely, internal thoracic artery (ITA) is known to maintain long-term patency in CABG. Understanding the biology and pathophysiology of in-stent restenosis and vein graft failure and mechanisms behind ITA resistance to failure is crucial to combat these complications in CAD treatment. This review intends to provide an overview of the biological mechanisms underlying stent and vein graft failure and of the potential therapeutic strategy to prevent these complications. Interestingly, despite being different modalities of revascularization, mechanisms of failure of stent and saphenous vein grafts are very similar from the biological standpoint.
coronary artery disease, in-stent restenosis, internal thoracic artery, myocardial revascularization, vein graft failure