Serum lipids and lipoproteins as predictors of atherosclerosis. An autopsy study.
A prospective study of autopsy-determined measures of atherosclerosis in aortas and coronary and cerebral arteries was completed for a group of 83 men who were free of clinical cardiovascular disease and cancer when they entered the Cooperative Lipoprotein Phenotyping Study in 1970. Total cholesterol minus high density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) was significantly associated with measures of atherosclerosis in all three groups of vessels. The patterns of associations for total, low density lipoprotein, and very low density lipoprotein cholesterol were similar but generally weaker and not significant for atherosclerosis in the cerebral arteries. Inverse associations of HDL-C with atherosclerosis in the circle of Willis and aorta were significant, but those for the coronary arteries were not. These associations were independent of other major risk factors for atherosclerosis in multivariate analyses. Similarities between these findings and those for clinical cardiovascular disease in the same cohort indicate that the opposing patterns of increased risk of clinical cardiovascular disease associated with total cholesterol and the decreased risk associated with HDL-C also exists at the level of atherosclerosis in a variety of arteries.
- Copyright © 1989 by American Heart Association