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Expert Opin Pharmacother. 2010 Jul;11(10):1659-72. doi: 10.1517/14656561003774080.

Advancing therapy for hypercholesterolemia.

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  • 1Medical School of Athens University, Hippokration Hospital, First Department of Cardiology, Athens, Greece.

Abstract

IMPORTANCE OF THE FIELD:

Hypercholesterolemia holds a key role in the development and progression of atherosclerosis and is a causative factor of coronary artery disease. Current guidelines for cholesterol treatment target low-density cholesterol (LDL-C) as the primary goal of therapy. Despite advances in the pharmacotherapy of atherosclerosis, the most successful agents used to treat this disease--HMG CoA reductase inhibitors--remain ineffective for the primary or secondary prevention of myocardial infarction in 50-60% of patients. Advancing therapy for hypercholesterolemia with new-emerging drugs either as monotherapy or in combination will hopefully improve cardiovascular outcomes.

AREAS COVERED IN THIS REVIEW:

The two major sources of cholesterol in the human body are: i) biosynthesis of cholesterol by the liver; and ii) absorption by the intestines. Both play a pivotal role in the overall balance of cholesterol. A recent and more effective therapeutic strategy is to treat both sources of cholesterol simultaneously with a complementary mechanism of action. The present article presents cholesterol metabolism and reviews new emerging lipid-lowering drugs and therapies that: i) lower LDL-C; ii) lower triglycerides; and iii) increase high-density lipoprotein cholesterol.

WHAT THE READER WILL GAIN:

This review summarizes the pivotal role of both the liver and intestine in the overall balance of cholesterol in the body and describe the clinical impact and relevance of using new emerging lipid-lowering drugs either alone or co-administered with statins in controlling cholesterol levels.

TAKE-HOME MESSAGE:

An elevated concentration of LDL-C plays a causal role in the development of cardiovascular disease. The new aggressive cholesterol treatment goals call for a more advanced therapeutic approach to maximize the cardiovascular benefits associated with lower LDL-C levels.

PMID:
20509773
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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