A cardiovascular stent is a cylindrical wire mesh structure that is permanently introduced into an artery during angioplasty (balloon dilatation) to act as a scaffold, thus preventing elastic recoil and/or sudden collapse of the damaged artery. While cardiovascular stents virtually eliminate elastic recoil and/or collapse of the artery, recognition of the stent as a foreign material triggers a human immune system response causing re-closure, or restenosis, of the artery. A recent advancement to counteract restenosis is to employ drug-eluting stents to locally deliver immunosuppressant and antiproliferative drugs.

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