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Am Heart J. 2000 Jan;139(1 Pt 1):164-73.

Relation between circadian patterns in levels of circulating lipoprotein(a), fibrinogen, platelets, and related lipid variables in men.

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MacNeal Cardiology Group, Berwyn, IL 60402, USA.



A correlation has been reported between lipoprotein(a) [Lp(a)] concentration and risk for coronary artery disease. High concentrations of Lp(a) might be markers for vascular or tissue injury or might be associated with other genetic or environmental factors that can cause acute myocardial infarction.


We measured the circadian characteristics of circulating Lp(a), fibrinogen, platelets, cholesterol, triglycerides, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol for a group of adult male volunteers who had no clinical symptoms. We obtained samples every 3 hours around the clock to assess the normal degree of variation within a 24-hour period and to test for similarities in circadian patterns and correlations with level of Lp(a).


Each variable displayed a highly significant circadian rhythm. Lp(a), fibrinogen, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol peaked in the morning. Cholesterol and platelets peaked in the late afternoon, and triglycerides peaked in the evening.


Although peak levels of Lp(a) and fibrinogen coincide with reported morning peak frequencies of myocardial infarction and stroke, the platelet peak appears to coincide with late afternoon peak frequencies of sudden cardiac death and fatal stroke. The data suggest that proper timing of single samples may improve the usefulness and accuracy of diagnosis, risk assessment, and therapy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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