(Philadelphia, PA) An important clinical advance in the prevention of heart disease has been identified by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, in collaboration with researchers at Tufts University and Pfizer. The study led by Daniel Rader, MD, Associate Professor of Medicine and Director of Penn's Preventive Cardiovascular Medicine & Lipid Center, involved a novel pharmacologic approach inhibition of the cholesteryl ester transfer protein (CETP) and showed that this approach is highly effective in raising high-density lipoprotein (HDL) levels in patients with low levels. The study will be published in the April 8th issue of The New England Journal of Medicine.
The drug torcetrapib, made by Pfizer, significantly increased levels of HDL in patients with low levels of this "good" cholesterol, whether or not they were also being treated with the cholesterol-lowering drug atorvastatin (Lipitor). The combination therapy used in the trial proved so effective that, among those patients who received the highest dosages of both drugs, HDL cholesterol levels were increased by more than 100%. "These results are striking because it is generally very difficult to raise HDL levels in people with already low-levels of good cholesterol," said Rader.
According to Rader, torcetrapib works by inhibiting the ability of the cholesteryl ester transfer protein to transfer cholesterol from HDL (the "good" cholesterol) into LDL (the "bad" cholesterol). And, although the drug's CETP-inhibitor properties proved effective when administered by itself, its effectiveness was maintained when given in combination with a statin -- which is the most common class of drugs used to lower LDL cholesterol levels.
The implications of this study which took place at Penn and Tufts/New England Medical Center, Boston -- could have far-reaching effects when it comes to heart disease. A low level of HDL cholesterol is the most common lipid abnorPage: 1 2 Related medicine news :1
Contact: Ed Federico
University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
. Increasing physician volume requirement could improve mammogram accuracy, study concludes2
. Increasing co-payments may reduce use of essential and non-essential medications3
. Increasing the risk of cancer4
. Increasing number of physician assistants handle more than 190 million patient visits in 20035
. Increasing MRSA in California jails6
. Increasing BMD could save Medicare $15 million7
. Survey Finds Increasing Popularity Of Acute Stroke Teams In U.S. Hospitals8
. White blood cell plays key role in bodys excessive repair response to asthma9
. Comfort-food cravings may be bodys attempt to put brake on chronic stress10
. Penn State College of Medicine awarded $6.9 million to create clearer images of bodys interior11
. Intensive exercise improves bodys ability to process blood sugars