Introduction Materials and Methods Lipoprotein(a) [Lp(a)] was initially though to be a genetic variant of low density lipoprotein (LDL) (1). Lp(a) is a low density lipoprotein-like particle containing apolipoprotein B100 disulphide-linked to one (or two) large glycoprotein called apolipoprotein(a) (Mr 300000-700000) (2). Apolipoprotein(a) has been shown to have a considerable degree of homology with human plasminogen (3). The characteristic feature of lipoprotein(a) is that it is distinct from all other serum proteins and apolipoproteins. This protein is believed to be inherited as an autosomal dominant trait and appears to be insensitive to either diet, lifestyle or most hypolipidaemic drugs (4, 5). Since its discovery by Berg in 1963 (1), there has been a considerable rise in interest, not Only in specialized research centres but also in clinical routine laboratories, in the accurate measurement of lipoprotein(a) in blood. This interest was stimulated by reports indicating that levels above 0.2--0.3 g/1, present in approximately 25% of the population, are associated with an increased risk of coronary heart disease (6, 7). Many investigators have confirmed that a high lipoprotein(a) concentration represents an indicator of risk for cardiovascular disease, especially when other serum lipidic quantities differ significantly from the values for healthy
Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine – de Gruyter
Published: Jan 1, 1993
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