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Non-Traditional Cardiovascular Risk Markers in the Era of Established Major Risk Factors and Multiple Guidelines

[ Vol. 17 , Issue. 3 ]


Thomas F. Whayne*   Pages 270 - 277 ( 8 )


The non-traditional cardiovascular (CV) risk factors that appear to be of most clinical interest include: apolipoprotein A (ApoA), apolipoprotein B (ApoB), high-sensitivity C-Reactive protein (hsCRP), homocysteine, interleukin 1 (IL1), lipoprotein (a) [Lp(a)], the density of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) particles, the LDL particle number, tissue/tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) and uric acid. These non-traditional risk factors may be of value in adding further confirmation and attention to suspected significant CV risk. They can also provide a better understanding of current concepts of atherogenesis (e.g. various potential mechanisms associated with inflammation) as an etiology and in guiding current plus future therapies. In the mid-20th century, atherosclerosis and CV disease were considered mechanistic occurrences with essentially no attention to possible metabolic and molecular etiologies. Therefore, the only treatments then centered around mainly surgical procedures to try to improve blood flow, first with peripheral arterial disease (PAD) and later coronary artery disease (CAD). Now, failure to treat CV risk factors, especially where there is good evidence-based medicine, as in the case of statins for high CV risk patients, is considered medical negligence. Nevertheless, many problems remain to be solved regarding atherosclerosis prevention and treatment.


Anti-inflammatory medications, cardiovascular risk, high-sensitivity C-reactive protein, interleukin-1, nontraditional risk markers, LDL-C.


Gill Heart and Vascular Institute, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY 40536-0200

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