Drano for the Arteries
By Jack Lucentini

If it works as hoped, it could be the next blockbuster drug: one that shrinks artery-clogging atherosclerotic plaque, the leading cause of the heart attacks that kill some half a million people annually in the United States.

Daniel Rader, a cardiologist at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, is studying several compounds that researchers say might be successful. Rader is a "key scientist" in this field, and the "prototype of a translational researcher - he goes between patients and the lab," says Glenn Gaulton, executive vice dean and chief scientific officer at Penn. While there are medicines to prevent buildup of cholesterol, a key component of plaque, there aren't any to clear it from the bloodstream, he...

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