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Study Presented at the ACC Shows Inflammatory Enzyme Lp-PLA2,Predicts Heart Disease Risk in Metabolic Syndrome Patients

NEW ORLEANS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Mar 26, 2007 - Study results show that elevated lipoprotein-associated phospholipase A2 (Lp-PLA2), a cardiovascular-specific inflammatory enzyme associated with unstable plaque that can lead to heart attack and stroke, is especially predictive of heart disease risk in patients with the metabolic syndrome--a serious medical condition that affects nearly 50 million Americans. The results, which were presented yesterday at the American College of Cardiology's annual scientific session, confirm previous findings demonstrating the association between elevated Lp-PLA2 and coronary heart disease.

Investigators at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City used the PLAC test from diaDexus to measure Lp-PLA2 levels in blood samples from almost 1,500 patients enrolled in the Intermountain Heart Collaborative Study. The patients also underwent coronary angiography to determine the presence of heart disease and were tracked for up to 10 years. Results showed that Lp-PLA2 was a clinically important predictor of heart disease and future death in patients with the metabolic syndrome, a dangerous precursor to diabetes characterized by high blood pressure, high triglycerides, high fasting blood glucose, low high-density lipoprotein, and small, dense low-density lipoprotein. Lp-PLA2 also predicted heart disease death risk in non-metabolic syndrome patients.

According to Richard Lanman, M.D., diaDexus' chief medical officer, the findings are important because of the large number of patients with the metabolic syndrome who may be at significantly increased risk for diabetes, stroke, and heart disease. "Interest in the metabolic syndrome has been increasing along with Americans' growing waistlines," Lanman said. "This study confirms earlier results indicating that elevated Lp-PLA2 is independent from and additive to the increased cardiovascular risk associated with insulin resistance. The addition
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