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Keywords:

  • platelets;
  • glycoprotein VI;
  • hemostasis;
  • thrombosis;
  • antithrombotic therapy;
  • antiplatelet agents

Summary.  The treatment of acute coronary syndromes has been considerably improved in recent years with the introduction of highly efficient antiplatelet drugs. However, there are still significant limitations: the recurrence of adverse vascular events remains a problem, and the improvement in efficacy is counterbalanced by an increased risk of bleeding, which is of particular importance in patients at risk of stroke. One of the most attractive targets for the development of new molecules with potential antithrombotic activity is platelet glycoprotein (GP)VI, because its blockade appears to ideally combine efficacy and safety. This review summarizes current knowledge on GPVI regarding its structure, its function, and its role in physiologic hemostasis and thrombosis. Strategies for inhibiting GPVI are presented, and evidence of the antithrombotic efficacy and safety of GPVI antagonists is provided.