Specific Lipoprotein(a) apheresis attenuates progression of carotid intima-media thickness in coronary heart disease patients with high lipoprotein(a) levels

M V Ezhov, M S Safarova, O I Afanasieva, O A Pogorelova, M I Tripoten, I Y Adamova, G A Konovalov, T V Balakhonova, S N Pokrovsky
Atherosclerosis. Supplements 2015, 18: 163-9

BACKGROUND: To date, there have been no studies evaluating the effect of isolated lipoprotein(a) (Lp(a)) lowering therapy on carotid atherosclerosis progression.

METHODS: We enrolled 30 patients who had coronary heart disease (CHD) verified by angiography, Lp(a) level ≥50 mg/dL, and low density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) level ≤2.6 mmol/L (100 mg/dL) on chronic statin therapy. Subjects were allocated in a 1:1 ratio to receive apheresis treatment on a weekly basis with immunoadsorption columns ("Lp(a) Lipopak"(®), POCARD Ltd., Russia) added to atorvastatin, or atorvastatin monotherapy. The primary efficacy end-point was the change from baseline in the mean intima-media thickness (IMT) of the common carotid arteries.

RESULTS: After one month run-in period with stable atorvastatin dose, LDL-C level was 2.3 ± 0.3 mmol/L and Lp(a) - 105 ± 37 mg/dL. As a result of acute effect of specific Lp(a) apheresis procedures, Lp(a) level decreased by an average of 73 ± 12% to a mean of 29 ± 16 mg/dL, and mean LDL-C decreased by 17 ± 3% to a mean of 1.8 ± 0.2 mmol/L. In the apheresis group, changes in carotid IMT at 9 and 18 months from baseline were -0.03 ± 0.09 mm (p = 0.05) and -0.07 ± 0.15 mm (p = 0.01), respectively. In the atorvastatin group no significant changes in lipid and lipoprotein parameters as well as in carotid IMT were received over 18-month period. Two years after study termination carotid IMT increased by an average of 0.02 ± 0.08 mm in apheresis group and by 0.06 ± 0.10 mm in the control group (p = 0.033).

CONCLUSION: Isolated extracorporeal Lp(a) elimination over an 18 months period produced regression of carotid intima-media thickness in stable CHD patients with high Lp(a) levels. This effect was maintained for two years after the end of study.


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