HIV Disease Activity as a Modulator of Lipoprotein(a) and Allele-Specific Apolipoprotein(a) Levels
Objective—Mechanisms underlying the cardiovascular risk of lipoprotein(a) are poorly understood. We investigated the relationship of apolipoprotein(a) (apo(a)) size, lipoprotein(a), and allele-specific apo(a) levels with HIV disease activity parameters in a biethnic population.
Methods and Results—Lipoprotein(a) and allele-specific apo(a) levels were determined in 139 white and 168 black HIV-positive patients. Plasma HIV RNA viral load and CD4+ T-cell count were used as surrogates for disease activity. Lipoprotein(a) and allele-specific apo(a) levels were higher in blacks than whites (for both P<0.001). Apo(a) allele size distribution was similar between the 2 ethnic groups, with a median apo(a) size of 28 kringle 4 repeats. Allele-specific apo(a) levels were positively associated with CD4+ T-cell count (P=0.027) and negatively with plasma HIV RNA viral load (P<0.001). Further, allele-specific apo(a) levels associated with smaller (<28 kringle 4) atherogenic apo(a) sizes were higher in subjects with CD4+ T-cell counts of ≥350 (P=0.002).
Conclusion—Allele-specific apo(a) levels were higher in subjects with high CD4+ T-cell count or low plasma HIV RNA viral load. The findings suggest that HIV disease activity reduced allele-specific apo(a) levels. Higher allele-specific apo(a) levels associated with atherogenic small apo(a) sizes might contribute to increased cardiovascular risk in HIV-positive subjects with improved disease status.
- Received July 17, 2012.
- Accepted November 9, 2012.
- © 2012 American Heart Association, Inc.