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Decreased lipoprotein function predicts the risk of death, study shows

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A reduction in the function of the lipoproteins that carry ‘good’ cholesterol predicts the risk of death in patients with myocardial infarction, says new study.

The HDL lipoproteins present in the blood have the ability to transport the cholesterol deposited in the macrophages in the arteries to the liver so that it can be eliminated, thus exerting a cardioprotective mechanism.

The reduction of this activity can also help to predict the risk of death in patients with acute myocardial infarction with ST segment elevation, as has been pointed out in a new work published in Biomedicines by researchers from CIBERDEM at the Research Institute of the Hospital de the Santa Creu i Sant Pau (IIB Sant Pau) of Barcelona and led by Francisco Blanco-Vaca.

Researchers have found that infarcted patients present a significant reduction in this activity of HDL as “arterial cholesterol cleaners”, which predicts the risk of death in the following two years of follow-up.

Likewise, these patients also present a high concentration of metabolites in plasma from the intestinal microbiota, but these changes are not independently associated with mortality, according to the conclusion of this study.

In this regard, the predoctoral researcher and first author of the article, Marina Canyelles, points out that “the results suggest that therapeutic strategies aimed at improving the cardioprotective potential of HDL could contribute to reducing mortality in heart attack patients”.

A sample of 253 patients with a two-year follow-up

To carry out this work, 253 patients diagnosed with myocardial infarction were followed for 2 years at the Hospital de la Santa Creu i Sant Pau, in search of adverse cardiovascular events, death from any cause or hospital readmissions, by telephone interview and/or review of electronic medical records.

The study was carried out with 35 patients who died during admission or during follow-up, for which reason 36 patients with similar characteristics (sex, age, treatments) who survived were searched for and compared in this study.

As explained by the CIBERDEM group leader at IIB Sant Pau, Francisco Blanco-Vaca, “we observed that the outflow of cholesterol from macrophages decreased notably in patients with heart attack, and this alteration was accentuated in patients who died in the follow-up, so the determination of the macrophage cholesterol flux with the plasma of these patients offered prognostic information”.

Source: 10.3390/biomedicines9101336

Image Credit: iStock

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