Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Cholesterol-Carrying Particle Tied To 70 Percent Increase In Heart Attack Risk

Date:
September 15, 2000
Source:
American Heart Association
Summary:
People with high blood levels of a fat-carrying particle known as Lp(a) have a 70 percent greater risk of heart attacks over a 10-year period than those with lower concentrations of this lipoprotein, according to a recent article in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.

DALLAS, Sept. 5 -- People with high blood levels of a fat-carrying particle known as Lp(a) have a 70 percent greater risk of heart attacks over a 10-year period than those with lower concentrations of this lipoprotein, according to today's Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association.

In the first large-scale study of this topic so far, scientists at Oxford University found a "clear association" between elevated Lp(a) levels and increased coronary heart disease risk in the general population. Their findings are based on reviews of 27 smaller studies that involved more than 5,200 individuals who had heart disease or had survived a heart attack.

"For more than a decade, there has been controversy about whether Lp(a) concentrations can predict increased risk of heart disease," says John Danesh, MBChB, MSc, DPhil., of Oxford's Clinical Trials Unit. "Our analysis indicates that high Lp(a) values are a definite risk factor, but there is still much we don't know, particularly whether reducing Lp(a) levels can help prevent heart attacks."

Lp(a) was first discovered in Norway in the 1960s, Danesh notes, but its exact function in the bloodstream remains a mystery. It consists of two main attached components: a molecule of "bad" low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and a large protein resembling plasminogen, which aids the blood's natural clot-preventing activity.

"It has been suggested that Lp(a) might either mimic or block plasminogen," Danesh says, "but that still remains to be proven. In the general population, Lp(a) values are highly skewed, and they appear to be determined mainly by genetic factors. People tend to have either very high or very low concentrations, and blacks generally have higher values than whites."

In the Oxford study, the number of heart attacks suffered by individuals with the highest Lp(a) concentrations was compared to the number of attacks among those with the lowest levels of Lp(a). During a decade of follow-up, the highest group had 70 percent more heart attacks than the lowest group.

So far, there are no readily available drugs for lowering Lp(a), Danesh points out, and those that do exist have many undesirable side-effects.

Also, he says there are no standardized blood tests at present to measure Lp(a). "Special tests are required and are used mainly for research purposes, but efforts are being made to make testing more available."

Danesh says the Oxford study provides the most reliable assessment so far of Lp(a)'s association with coronary disease, but many important questions remain unanswered.

He says two main types of research are needed: (1) large observational studies to demonstrate the strength of the association between Lp(a) and heart disease in a range of different circumstances ­ at different ages, different levels of classical risk factors, in men and women, etc.; (2) clinical trials of treatments to reduce Lp(a) and their effectiveness in preventing heart disease.

"Currently, the lack of a practical Lp(a)-lowering drug makes the second type of study difficult," Danesh says. "Overall, it will take much further study to determine the relevance of Lp(a) in the causation of coronary heart disease, but at least we have clearly established a moderately strong association between the two, independent of the standard risk factors."

Other researchers participating in this study include Rory Collins, MBBS, MSc., and Richard Peto, FRS.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Heart Association. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Heart Association. "Cholesterol-Carrying Particle Tied To 70 Percent Increase In Heart Attack Risk." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 September 2000. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/09/000913203650.htm>.
American Heart Association. (2000, September 15). Cholesterol-Carrying Particle Tied To 70 Percent Increase In Heart Attack Risk. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/09/000913203650.htm
American Heart Association. "Cholesterol-Carrying Particle Tied To 70 Percent Increase In Heart Attack Risk." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/09/000913203650.htm (accessed September 23, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola Costs Keep Mounting

Ebola Costs Keep Mounting

Reuters - Business Video Online (Sep. 23, 2014) — The WHO has warned up to 20,000 people could be infected with Ebola over the next few weeks. As Sonia Legg reports, the implications for the West African countries suffering from the disease are huge. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Cases Could Reach 1.4 Million Within 4 Months

Ebola Cases Could Reach 1.4 Million Within 4 Months

Newsy (Sep. 23, 2014) — Health officials warn that without further intervention, the number of Ebola cases in Liberia and Sierra Leone could reach 1.4 million by January. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
WHO: Ebola Cases to Triple in Weeks Without Drastic Action

WHO: Ebola Cases to Triple in Weeks Without Drastic Action

AFP (Sep. 23, 2014) — The number of Ebola infections will triple to 20,000 by November, soaring by thousands every week if efforts to stop the outbreak are not stepped up radically, the WHO warned in a study on Tuesday. Duration: 01:01 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
5 Ways Men Can Prevent Most Heart Attacks

5 Ways Men Can Prevent Most Heart Attacks

Newsy (Sep. 23, 2014) — No surprise here: A recent study says men can reduce their risk of heart attack by maintaining a healthy lifestyle, which includes daily exercise. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins