Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Overlooked ugly cholesterol causes heart disease

22.01.2013
THE GOOD, THE BAD AND THE UGLY The risk of ischaemic heart disease – a disease affecting some 150,000 Danes – is three times higher in persons with high levels of the so-called 'ugly' cholesterol. This is the finding of a new study of 73,000 Danes, which is shedding light on a long debate on this topic. The results have just been published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

Most Danes are aware that high cholesterol is life-threatening. But very few know which type of cholesterol is the most frequent killer. Cholesterol is divided into 'the good' HDL cholesterol, 'the bad' LDL cholesterol and 'the ugly' cholesterol. It is the so-called 'ugly cholesterol' – also called 'remnant-like particle cholesterol' – that is the really bad guy.

"LDL cholesterol or 'the bad' cholesterol' is of course bad, but our new study reveals that the ugly cholesterol is the direct cause of arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) resulting in ischaemic heart disease and early death. By examining 73,000 persons, we found that an increase in the ugly cholesterol triples the risk of ischaemic heart disease, which is caused by lack of oxygen to the heart muscle due to narrowing or blocking of the coronary arteries," says Professor Børge Nordestgaard, chief physician at Herlev Hospital and Clinical Professor at the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Copenhagen.

"I hope that this new knowledge will lead to better preventive treatment, as more than one in five Danes suffers from high ugly cholesterol. We also hope that the pharmaceutical industry will develop new drugs targeted specifically at raised ugly cholesterol levels," he emphasises.

Widespread disease worldwide

In Denmark alone, 20,000 persons are diagnosed with ischaemic heart disease every year, and some 150,000 Danes are currently affected by the disease. According to World Health Organization estimates, 17 million people fall victim to cardiovascular disease – the most frequent cause of death in the world.

"High ugly cholesterol is the result of high blood levels of normal fat (triglycerides). The most important cause of high ugly cholesterol is overweight and obesity. Persons with high ugly cholesterol should therefore be advised to lose weight, but drugs such as statins and fibrates may also lower levels of ugly cholesterol in the blood," says Børge Nordestgaard.

Samples from 73,000 Danes with genetic defect

Anette Varbo, physician and PhD student at Herlev Hospital, has been part of the research team behind the new findings. She says that the findings shed light on a long-standing debate among researchers on the so-called triglyceride, arteriosclerosis and cholesterol.

"To be able to examine the correlation between ugly cholesterol and heart disease, we have used blood samples from persons having a genetic defect which means that they suffer from high ugly cholesterol their entire life. The research findings do therefore not depend on their lifestyle patterns in general. Unhealthy lifestyle factors such as smoking, fatty foods and overweight all increase the risk of heart disease, and the blood samples from persons having this genetic defect thus give the most accurate results," says Anette Varbo.

The scientific article is based on the following three population studies: the Herlev-Østerbro study, the Østerbro study and the Copenhagen heart study.

Facts about cholesterol:

Cholesterol is divided into 'the good' HDL (High Density Lipoprotein) cholesterol, 'the bad' LDL (Low Density Lipoprotein) cholesterol and 'the ugly' cholesterol (or 'remnant-like particle cholesterol').

If the levels of normal fat, triglyceride, in the blood are high, then the levels of ugly cholesterol are also high. This can be determined by a blood sample.

More than 50% of all Danes have high blood cholesterol levels.
You can lower your blood cholesterol level by eating a low-fat diet and avoiding overweight. Should this not lower the cholesterol level sufficiently, it may be lowered with drugs.

Ischaemic heart disease is caused by arteriosclerosis of the coronary arteries and often manifests itself as chest pain (angina pectoris) and/or a heart attack (myocardial infarction).

(Fact Sources: The Danish Heart Foundation and the medical compendium Medicinsk Kompendium)

Børge Nordestgaard | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.ku.dk

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht New study points the way to therapy for rare cancer that targets the young
22.11.2017 | Rockefeller University

nachricht Penn study identifies new malaria parasites in wild bonobos
21.11.2017 | University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Frictional Heat Powers Hydrothermal Activity on Enceladus

Computer simulation shows how the icy moon heats water in a porous rock core

Heat from the friction of rocks caused by tidal forces could be the “engine” for the hydrothermal activity on Saturn's moon Enceladus. This presupposes that...

Im Focus: Nanoparticles help with malaria diagnosis – new rapid test in development

The WHO reports an estimated 429,000 malaria deaths each year. The disease mostly affects tropical and subtropical regions and in particular the African continent. The Fraunhofer Institute for Silicate Research ISC teamed up with the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME and the Institute of Tropical Medicine at the University of Tübingen for a new test method to detect malaria parasites in blood. The idea of the research project “NanoFRET” is to develop a highly sensitive and reliable rapid diagnostic test so that patient treatment can begin as early as possible.

Malaria is caused by parasites transmitted by mosquito bite. The most dangerous form of malaria is malaria tropica. Left untreated, it is fatal in most cases....

Im Focus: A “cosmic snake” reveals the structure of remote galaxies

The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.

Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...

Im Focus: Visual intelligence is not the same as IQ

Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.

That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...

Im Focus: Novel Nano-CT device creates high-resolution 3D-X-rays of tiny velvet worm legs

Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.

During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Ecology Across Borders: International conference brings together 1,500 ecologists

15.11.2017 | Event News

Road into laboratory: Users discuss biaxial fatigue-testing for car and truck wheel

15.11.2017 | Event News

#Berlin5GWeek: The right network for Industry 4.0

30.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Underwater acoustic localization of marine mammals and vehicles

23.11.2017 | Information Technology

Enhancing the quantum sensing capabilities of diamond

23.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Meadows beat out shrubs when it comes to storing carbon

23.11.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>