Physicians' Academy for Cardiovascular Education

Increased inflammatory activation in patients with familial dysbetalipoproteinaemia

Remnant Cholesterol Elicits Arterial Wall Inflammation and a Multilevel Cellular Immune Response in Humans

Literature - Bernelot Moens SJ, Verweij SL, Schnitzler JG, et al. - Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2017;37: published online ahead of print


A causal association between high remnant cholesterol and elevated c-reactive protein (CRP) levels, as well as between remnant cholesterol and ischaemic heart disease was reported recently by Mendelian randomisation studies [1-3]. However, the possible mechanisms by which remnant cholesterol particles cause inflammatory changes are unclear.

In this study, the impact of elevated levels of remnant cholesterol on multi-level inflammatory activation was evaluated in 17 patients with familial dysbetalipoproteinaemia (FD) and 17 healthy controls. Arterial wall inflammation and bone marrow activity were assessed with 18F-FDG PET/CT, monocyte phenotype was tested with flow cytometry and the association between remnant cholesterol levels and blood leukocyte counts was validated in the Copenhagen General Population Study (CGPS).

Main results


Patients with FD have increased arterial wall and cellular inflammation, as well as increased bone marrow activation. These findings suggest that additional pathophysiological processes lead to the atherogenicity of remnant cholesterol that contributes to the increased cardiovascular disease risk in these patients.


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Find this article online at Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol

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