Navigation Links
Synthetic HDL: A new weapon to fight cholesterol problems

EVANSTON, Ill. --- Buttery Christmas cookies, eggnog, juicy beef roast, rich gravy and creamy New York-style cheesecake. Happy holiday food unfortunately can send blood cholesterol levels sky high.

Northwestern University scientists now offer a promising new weapon -- synthetic high-density lipoprotein (HDL), the "good" cholesterol -- that could help fight chronically high cholesterol levels and the deadly heart disease that often results.

The researchers successfully designed synthetic HDL and show that their nanoparticle version is capable of irreversibly binding cholesterol. The synthetic HDL, based on gold nanoparticles, is similar in size to HDL and mimics HDL's general surface composition.

The study is published online by the Journal of the American Chemical Society (JACS).

"We have designed and built a cholesterol sponge. The synthetic HDL features the basics of what a great cholesterol drug should be," said Chad A. Mirkin, George B. Rathmann Professor of Chemistry in the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences, professor of medicine and professor of materials science and engineering. Mirkin and Shad Thaxton, M.D., assistant professor of urology in Northwestern's Feinberg School of Medicine, led the study.

"Drugs that lower the bad cholesterol, LDL, are available, and you can lower LDL through your diet, but it is difficult to raise the good cholesterol, HDL," said Mirkin. "I've taken niacin to try and raise my HDL, but the side effects are bad so I stopped. We are hopeful that our synthetic HDL will one day help fill this gap in useful therapeutics."

In creating synthetic HDL the researchers started with a gold nanoparticle as the core. They then layered on a lipid that attaches to the gold surface, then another lipid and last a protein, called APOA1, the main protein component of naturally occurring HDL. The final high-density lipoprotein nanoparticles are each about 18 nanometers in diameter, a size similar to natural HDL.

"Cholesterol is essential to our cells, but chronic excess can lead to dangerous plaque formation in our arteries," said Thaxton. "HDL transports cholesterol to the liver, which protects against atherosclerosis. Our hope is that, with further development, our synthetic form of HDL could be used to increase HDL levels and promote better health."

"HDL is a natural nanoparticle, and we've successfully mimicked it," said Mirkin, director of Northwestern's International Institute for Nanotechnology. "Gold is an ideal scaffolding material -- it's size and shape can be tailored, and it can be easily functionalized. Using gold nanoparticles, which are non-toxic, for synthetic HDL bodes well for the development of a new therapeutic."

The development of synthetic HDL is a result of a successful collaboration between scientists in Northwestern's department of chemistry and the Feinberg School. Bringing these two groups together, says Mirkin, should lead to major advances in translational research. Their next step is to further study the synthetic HDL in biologically relevant conditions and measure and evaluate the cholesterol-binding properties.


Contact: Marla Paul
Northwestern University

Related medicine news :

1. New center launched today to spearhead UK research in synthetic biology
2. Researcher refining synthetic molecules to prevent HIV resistance
3. FDA Approves Durameds Synthetic Conjugated Estrogens-A Vaginal Cream
4. Caltech engineers build first-ever multi-input plug-and-play synthetic RNA device
5. Novel Solid-State Laser Design Based on Synthetic Diamond From Element Six Opens up New Applications
6. Pioneering Solutions To Fight Staph, MRSA Infections in Sports Facilities and Synthetic Turf Fields
7. Safety of Synthetic Turf Validated by NJ Test Results
8. Synthetic molecules hold promise for new family of anti-cancer drugs
9. Its Safe to Play on Desso Synthetic Turf
10. Experts Agree There is No Scientific Evidence of Health Risks in New Jersey Synthetic Turf Fields
11. Oregon study raises questions on synthetic progestins
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/30/2015)... Fla. (PRWEB) , ... November 30, 2015 , ... ... opened the driverless vehicle experience this summer, ushering in a new era of ... percent driverless and electric shuttle, will continue to offer guests an up-close look ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... (PRWEB) , ... November 30, 2015 , ... The presidential ... of personal styling. So why is it a national news story when Donald Trump ... Parsa Mohebi, M.D., because appearances count more than anyone wants to admit when it ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... ... November 30, 2015 , ... The Progressive ... TX, on January 29 and 30, 2016. The course welcomes dental professionals and ... practices, to learn how to better succeed in the modern dental marketplace. The ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... Georgia (PRWEB) , ... November 30, 2015 , ... ... of a key disease-causing component of bacteria could be effective in fighting methicillin-resistant ... at Georgia State University. , Their study showed that small molecule analogs that ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... NJ (PRWEB) , ... November 30, 2015 , ... Dr. ... With three office locations, patients can visit Dr. Margulies to experience the best available ... to hold the title of "NJ Top Dentist"! , Orthodontics is the branch of ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/30/2015)... , Nov. 30, 2015  DURECT ... that Matt Hogan , Chief Financial ... Healthcare Conference on Tuesday, December 8 at ... being held at the Westin Grand Central ... be available for one-on-one meetings at this ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... SAN FRANCISCO , Nov. 30, 2015 ... and Designers of Things (DoT ) co-located events ... Printing and the Internet of Things, will draw more ... San Jose Convention Center. The events, combined ... their latest technologies. --> ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... CHICAGO , Nov. 30, 2015 Nautilus ... next-generation Radiology Image Management platform ( ). The ... was announced from RSNA 2015 (Radiology Society North America) ... Radiology conference in the U.S. --> ... radiology platform that enables access to radiology studies worldwide ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: