Cardiologists have tried a number of approaches to decrease the risk of restenosis. Stenting is becoming more commonplace; replacing balloon angioplasty. During the stenting procedure, a metal mesh (stent) is deployed against the wall of the artery revascularizing the artery. Other approaches include local radiotherapy and the use of immunosuppressive antiproliferative drugs, coated onto the stenting mesh to form a drug-eluting stent. Analogues of rapamycin, such as tacrolimus (FK-506) and more so everolimus, normally used as immunosuppressants but recently discovered to also inhibit the proliferation of vascular smooth muscle cells, have appeared to be quite effective in preventing restenosis in clinical trials.
Antisense knockdown of c-myc, a protein critical for progression of cell replication, is another approach to inhibit cell proliferation in the artery wall and has been through preliminary clinical trials using Morpholino oligos.