Research led by a team at the University of Kentucky and funded by the American Heart Association and National Institutes of Health has uncovered a new biomarker for cardiovascular disease: an apolipoprotein/antibody combo.
While some research has suggested that circulating antibodies that target Apolipoprotein A-I (ApoA-I)—a component of high-density lipoprotein that carries fats and cholesterol through the bloodstream—can increase a person’s risk of heart disease, UK College of Pharmacy professor Vincent Venditto and colleagues reported that the opposite was true in their own study. The team identified a novel form of ApoA-I that’s coupled with an antibody, and the ApoA-I/antibody complex seemed to be associated with improved patient outcomes.
In their analysis, Venditto et al. found higher concentrations of the ApoA-I/antibody were linked to better outcomes, and coupling the complex with low levels of HDL and factors like family history, age, sex and smoking status could help physicians gain a clearer view of patients’ CVD risk.
A release from UK said Venditto and colleagues’ findings established ApoA-I/antibodies as “an unexplored component of the immune response that is associated with improved survival in patients with cardiovascular disease.”
“The implications for this data are exciting,” Venditto said in the statement. “We look forward to evaluating this biomarker in a larger cohort of patients and uncovering the role of this biomarker in cardiovascular disease."