Atherosclerosis is inflammation of the vessel wall of the arterial tree. This inflammation arises at specific areas that experience disturbed blood flow such as bifurcations and the lesser curvature of the aortic arch. Although all endothelial cells are exposed to comparable levels of circulating plasma cholesterol, only endothelial cells overlaying lesions display an inflamed phenotype. This occurs even in the absence of any additional exacerbating disease factors because blood flow controls the expression of Toll-like receptors (TLR), which are initiators of cellular activation and inflammation. TLR2- and 4-expression exert an overall proatherogenic effect in hyperlipidemic mice. TLR activation of the endothelium promotes lipid accumulation and leukocyte accumulation within lesions.