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Good cholesterol activity predicts better cardiovascular disease |

Good cholesterol activity predicts better cardiovascular disease |

Atherosclerosis (atherosclerosis) is a chronic inflammation of plaques in the blood vessels that over time can lead to cardiovascular disease, and it is the most common cause of death in the world. Inflammation is not felt but it can cause significant damage to vessels and it is important to identify at-risk individuals as early as possible to reverse development.

Multifunctional protein

HDL lipoproteins remove excess cholesterol from body tissues into the liver. Today, the HDL (for blood cholesterol) value is used to predict an individual’s risk of developing cardiovascular disease. HDL is usually called the good cholesterol, but HDL particles have many important functions, among them are anti-inflammatory properties that can prevent atherosclerosis.

Now researchers at Karolinska Institutet and University of Groningen In the Netherlands, for the first time, the anti-inflammatory activity of HDL particles was studied that could predict future risks of heart attack and other cardiovascular events. As a basis, the researchers used blood samples from participants in the Prevind study in Groningen. Prevention of end-stage kidney and vascular disease.

Of a total of 8,592 participants, a sample was taken of 369 people who were in good health when the study began, but who had cardiovascular disease at follow-up after 10.5 years. These were matched according to age, gender, smoking habits, and HDL cholesterol levels with healthy individuals of the same base.

Improving risk assessment

Despite matched cholesterol levels, participants affected by different cardiovascular events had significantly lower anti-inflammatory activity in their HDL particles. When this value was added to other parameters, the results of the accepted Framingham model were improved to predict cardiovascular risk.

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The analysis according to the Framingham Model became more accurate when the HDL cholesterol value was completely replaced with the anti-inflammatory HDL value.

Our results indicate new possibilities for improving cardiovascular risk assessment by replacing the cholesterol biomarker with another important biological function. At present, however, the method for analyzing anti-inflammatory activity for HDL is very complex and cumbersome. Thus, our next goal is to make the method simpler and clinically accessible, says Uwe Tietge, professor in the department of laboratory medicine, Karolinska Institutet, and co-author of the study.

Scientific material:

Anti-inflammatory ability HDL and cardiovascular accidents, (Congzhuo Jia, Josephine LC Anderson, Eke G. Gruppen, Yu Lei, Stephan JL Bakker, Robin PF Dullaart, Uwe JF Tietge). Trading, online on April 12, 2021


Uwe Tietge, Professor, Department of Laboratory Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, [email protected]


The study was funded by Dutch Organization for Scientific Research The Heart and Lung Foundation. Uwe Tietge has a paid assignment to Astra Zeneca without contacting this study. Incidentally, no conflicts of interest have been reported.