Cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) represent the most important cause of mortality in women and in men. Contrary to the long-standing notion that the effects of the major risk factors on CVD outcomes are the same in both sexes, recent evidence recognizes new, potentially independent, sex/gender-related risk factors for CVDs, and sex/gender-differences in the clinical presentation of CVDs have been demonstrated. Furthermore, some therapeutic options may not be equally effective and safe in men and women. In this context, proteomics offers an extremely useful and versatile analytical platform for biomedical researches that expand from the screening of early diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers to the investigation of the molecular mechanisms underlying CDVs. In this review, we summarized the current applications of proteomics in the cardiovascular field, with emphasis on sex and gender-related differences in CVDs.
SIGNIFICANCE: Increasing evidence supports the profound effect of sex and gender on cardiovascular physio-pathology and the response to drugs. A clear understanding of the mechanisms underlying sexual dimorphisms in CVDs would not only improve our knowledge of the etiology of these diseases, but could also inform health policy makers and guideline committees in tailoring specific interventions for the prevention, treatment and management of CVDs in both men and women.