There′s been a significant increase in the
number of people in Korea with high cholesterol. Up until now, the only way to treat the problem
was to take statins or take other measures to lower the level of the so-called ′bad′
cholesterol. But now, local researchers say they′ve come
up with another way to deal with the problem. Hwang Ji-hye has more.
This patient is visiting the hospital due to her high cholesterol level.
She went through sudden weight gain after menopause and her blood cholesterol is at
the dangerous level of 240 milligrams per deciliter. “I′ve gained a lot of weight over the last
three years, and my cholesterol level rose fast as well.”
A high cholesterol level increases the risk of heart disease and stroke, but not all cholesterol
is harmful. There is ′good′ cholesterol called ′high-density
lipoprotein,′ which the body needs an ample supply of, and ′bad′ cholesterol called
′low-density lipoprotein,′ which should be kept to a minimum.
Up until now, the only way to treat high cholesterol was to lower the level of the ′bad′ LDL
cholesterol, but the treatment has possible side effects such as muscle pain.
But local researchers have found a new way to control the body′s blood cholesterol
level by boosting the amount of ′good′ HDL cholesterol with the use of a ′liver
X receptor′. The team of doctors from Asan Medical Center
found that mice injected with the receptor protein saw HDL cholesterol levels increase
by 36 percent more than control mice. “The increased level of HDL cholesterol helps
eliminate the body′s overall cholesterol via the liver in the form of bile acids.”
The team anticipates the new findings will lead to better treatment of arteriosclerosis
while reducing the risk of side effects. Hwang Ji-hye, Arirang News.