Tuesday December 11, 2018

New method may remove the idea of fasting before cholesterol test

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New method may remove the idea of fasting before cholesterol test
New method may remove the idea of fasting before cholesterol test. wikimedia commons
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New York, Jan 3, 2018: A new method of calculating so-called “bad cholesterol” levels has the potential to do away with the need to fast before blood is drawn for such screening, say researchers.

The study, published in the journal Circulation, suggests that the new method is more accurate than an older method in people who did not fast before the cholesterol test.

The new method for calculating LDL, or low-density lipoprotein, was developed by Seth Martin and colleagues at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in the US.

“Although the new LDL calculation method is a bit more complex, the beauty is that it can be performed using information that is already collected in the blood sample for the standard lipid profile and automated in the lab’s computer system to give a more accurate result,” Martin said.

“Since nonfasting samples are now accurate, it’s more convenient for patients because they can come in anytime and don’t need to return for a second appointment if they have eaten,” Martin added.

For the study, the researchers compared the accuracy of the new LDL calculation method with the Friedewald method, developed in the late 1970s when patients fasted or did not fast.

The Friedewald method was earlier shown by Martin and colleagues to underestimate LDL cholesterol levels, particularly in people with high triglycerides.

Triglycerides are fatty acids that tend to be higher in people with obesity and diabetes and that increase after eating.

The physicians did their comparison using data already gathered in a clinical repository.

In their final analysis, the researchers found that approximately 30 per cent of the nonfasting participants had greater than 10 milligrams per decilitre inaccurate cholesterol measurements using the Friedewald method compared with only three per cent error from the actual measured value with the new method.

The new test does not take any longer to provide results to physicians and patients, and the cost is the same to administer, the study said. (IANS)

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Managing Cholesterol Might Help To Reduce Alzheimer’s Risk

These included several points within the CELF1/MTCH2/SPI1 region on chromosome 11 that previously had been linked to the immune system

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Can managing cholesterol reduce Alzheimer's risk? Read it out here. Pixabay

Managing cholesterol might help reduce Alzheimer’s risk, says researchers, including one of Indian-origin, who identified a genetic link between the progressive brain disorder and heart disease.

Examining DNA from more than 1.5 million people, the study showed that risk factors for heart disease such as elevated triglyceride and cholesterol levels (HDL, LDL, and total cholesterol) were genetically related to Alzheimer’s risk.

However, genes that contribute to other cardiovascular risk factors, like body mass index and Type-2 diabetes, did not seem to contribute to genetic risk for Alzheimer’s.

“The genes that influenced lipid metabolism were the ones that also were related to Alzheimer’s disease risk,” said Celeste M. Karch, Assistant Professor at the Washington University’s School of Medicine.

Thus, if the right genes and proteins could be targeted, it may be possible to lower the risk for Alzheimer’s disease in some people by managing their cholesterol and triglycerides, added Rahul S. Desikan, Assistant Professor at the UCSF.

For the study, published in the journal Acta Neuropathologica, the team identified points of DNA that increase the risk of cardiovascular disease and also heighten the risk for Alzheimer’s disease.

"The question for us now is not how to eliminate cholesterol from the brain, but about how to control cholesterol's role in Alzheimer's disease through the regulation of its interaction with amyloid-beta," Vendruscolo said.
In Alzheimer’s disease, patients start losing memory, Pixabay

The team looked at differences in the DNA of people with factors that contribute to heart disease or Alzheimer’s disease and identified 90 points across the genome that were associated with risk for both diseases.

Their analysis confirmed that six of the 90 regions had very strong effects on Alzheimer’s and heightened blood lipid levels, including several within genes that had not previously been linked to dementia risk.

These included several points within the CELF1/MTCH2/SPI1 region on chromosome 11 that previously had been linked to the immune system.

Also Read- Longer Exposure to Honking Traffic Makes You Obese

The researchers confirmed their findings in a large genetic study of healthy adults by showing that these same risk factors were more common in people with a family history of Alzheimer’s, even though they had not themselves developed dementia or other symptoms such as memory loss.

“These results imply that cardiovascular and Alzheimer’s pathology co-occur because they are linked genetically. That is, if you carry this handful of gene variants, you may be at risk not only for heart disease but also for Alzheimer’s,” Desikan said. (IANS)