VAP Cholesterol Test Helps Reveal Association Between Adiponectin Levels and Atherosclerosis

Monday, July 21, 2008 General News
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala., July 21 Using the VAP Cholesterol Testfrom Atherotech, researchers have identified a link between adiponectin andheart disease progression. The information could help physicians trying topinpoint the most effective cholesterol and heart disease risk-loweringtreatments in at-risk patients.

The association between low adiponectin levels, abnormal lipids, andincreased coronary atherosclerosis was confirmed using the expandedcholesterol profiling capabilities of the VAP Test plus an adiponectin assayas part of an Intravascular Ultrasound (IVUS) substudy of the Diabetes GenomeProject.

The single-center, prospective gene and biomarker banking registry wasdesigned to collect extensive clinical and anatomic information on patientsundergoing coronary angiography. For the substudy, fasting blood samples werecollected from 185 patients undergoing coronary angiography and IVUS.Lipoprotein subclasses were measured by the VAP Test; adiponectin was measuredusing an immunoassay from R&D Systems.

Results of the study, published in the May issue of Diabetes Care, showedthat low adiponectin levels are associated with small dense LDL cholesterol,increased plaque volume as measured by lipid-rich plaques, and a higherprevalence of IVUS-derived thickening of the inner-lining of blood vessels innon-diabetic patients. Seventy five percent of the patients were takingcholesterol lowering statins and had LDL cholesterol levels well below therequired cut-off for study inclusion of 100mg/dL as well as normal HDLcholesterol levels and normal triglycerides.

"The VAP Test allowed us to define the relationship between adiponectinand circulating lipids," said Principal Investigator Steve Marso, M.D. "Had wenot characterized the LDL subparticles we would not have found the associationbetween adiponectin and small dense LDL, as there was not one betweenadiponectin and total LDL. This relationship between adiponectin and smalldense LDL moieties may prove to be an important link in understanding the riskfor patients to develop lipid laden atheroma."

The VAP Test provides researchers and medical professionals with directmeasurement of LDL, HDL and all relevant subclasses, and includes non-HDL, ahighly accurate determination of apoB, and emerging risk factors (such asLp(a), remnants, and small dense LDL.)

"This indicates that even patients whose cholesterol results appear normalor who are on therapy may still harbor a significant atherogenic burdenleading to the development of vulnerable plaques and narrowed arteries," saidJames Ehrlich, M.D., Atherotech's chief medical officer. "For the clinician,this demonstrates the value of identifying and lowering the substantialresidual risk that remains despite aggressive statin monotherapy. A keyfeature of the comprehensive VAP Test is the identification of the major lipidcomponents of residual risk leading to proper individualized therapy."

VAP technology has been used in more than 100 clinical trials and willcontinue to play an important role in clinical practice and -- as demonstratedby the present study -- as a valuable analytical research tool. The VAP Testis available nationwide. For more information on the VAP Test for research andclinical trial applications, call 877.901.8510 or

About Atherotech, Inc.

Atherotech is a cardio-diagnostic company focusing on direct measurementof the comprehensive lipid panel using the company's patented VAP Technology.The VAP Test directly measures the cholesterol content of all lipids,components and subclasses. It is the first cholesterol profile to comply withupdated National Cholesterol Education Program ATP III recommendations callingfor more accurate, direct low-density lipoprotein (LDL) measurement, which isunaffected by triglycerides. The VAP Cholesterol Test -- the new standard ofcare for patient

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