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'Good' cholesterol may have different chemical properties in Alzheimer's patients

February 22, 2017

High-density lipoprotein (HDL - "good" cholesterol) in people with Alzheimer's disease has different chemical properties than HDL in adults without the disease, and this may contribute to cognitive impairment in those with Alzheimer's, according to research presented at the American Stroke Association's International Stroke Conference 2017.

HDL is the only type of lipoprotein that can cross into and out of the blood brain barrier, and adequate HDL is associated with good cognitive function. Researchers analyzed the chemical components in HDL from the blood of Alzheimer's patients and compared them to HDL from healthy adults.

They found that compared to healthy people, Alzheimer's patients had a 5.5 times increase of a dysfunctional HDL subfraction, as well as a decreased protein/lipid ratio.

The associated reduction in proteins needed for brain function, such as albumin, and increase in proinflammatory components could favor inflammation in the brain and contribute to cognitive impairment.
-end-
Hua-Chen Chan, Ph.D., Assistant Investigator, Center for Lipid Biosciences, Kaohsiung Medical University Hospital, Kaohsiung Medical University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan.

Note: Actual presentation is 4:30 p.m. CT/5:30 p.m. ET, Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2017.

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Statements and conclusions of study authors that are presented at American Stroke Association scientific meetings are solely those of the study authors and do not necessarily reflect association policy or position. The association makes no representation or warranty as to their accuracy or reliability. The association receives funding primarily from individuals; foundations and corporations (including pharmaceutical, device manufacturers and other companies) also make donations and fund specific association programs and events. The association has strict policies to prevent these relationships from influencing the science content. Revenues from pharmaceutical and device corporations are available at http://www.heart.org/corporatefunding.

American Heart Association

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