Recent research by scientists at the University of Warwick into cholesterol has found a new type of ultrabad cholesterol that is believed to raise the risk of heart disease . The cholesterol is more sticky than the usual, so-called, bad cholesterol, which means it is much more likely to become attached to the walls of arteries.
The cholesterol, called MGmin-LDL and which is involved in the arterial plaque deposits that can lead to heart attacks and strokes, is more common in patients suffering from type 2 diabetes, as well as the elderly.
The fatty material contains sugary molecules that are smaller and denser than the regular type, and can more easily adhere to artery walls, helping the build-up of plaques. It is thought the breakthrough, which was published in the journal Diabetes, could offer an explanation of why the diabetes drug metformin seems to lower the risk of heart attacks.
Naila Rabbani, lead researcher on the study, commented “We’re excited to see our research leading to a greater understanding of this type of cholesterol, which seems to cause heart disease in diabetics and elderly people.”
She added “The next challenge is to tackle this more dangerous type of cholesterol with treatments that could help neutralise its harmful effects on patients’ arteries.”

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