Heart attack vaccine? Innovative injection could prevent cholesterol buildup

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Heart disease is the leading cause of death of men and women in the US. Over half a million Americans die from it annually. Atherosclerosis — a build up of plaque in the arteries — is a common feature of heart disease and can be caused by smoking, fats and cholesterol in the blood, diabetes, and high blood pressure.

A research team from Austria and The Netherlands have developed an anti-cholesterol vaccine that might help combat plaque. Mice with heart disease treated with the vaccine produced antibodies to cholesterol that lowered their blood levels of it and reduced plaque in their arteries.

The results show promising potential for lowering heart disease in humans. Study researcher Christine Landlinger from AFFiRis (the company that developed the vaccine) and her co-authors published the study in the May 2017 issue of the European Heart Journal.

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If these findings translate successfully into humans, this could mean that, as the induced antibodies persist for months after a vaccination, we could develop a long-lasting therapy that, after the first vaccination, just needs an annual booster. This would result in an effective and more convenient treatment for patients, as well as higher patient compliance.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original postVaccine Can Prevent Bad Cholesterol from Accumulating in Blood Vessels, Potentially Prevent Heart Attacks

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