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New Cholesterol Drug

communistkiller

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Next big thing? Big cholesterol drop with new drug - Health - Heart health - msnbc.com

CHICAGO— An experimental Merck drug safely boosted good cholesterol to record highs while dropping bad cholesterol to unprecedented lows in a study that stunned researchers and renewed hopes for an entirely new way of lowering heart risks.

"We are the most excited we have been in decades" about a novel drug, said the study's leader, Dr. Christopher Cannon, of Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston. "This could really be the next big thing."

The drug, anacetrapib, won't be on the market anytime soon. It needs more testing to see if its dramatic effects on cholesterol will translate into fewer heart attacks, strokes and deaths. Merck & Co. announced a 30,000- patient study to answer that question and it will take several years.

But the sheer magnitude of its effects so far caused big excitement at an American Heart Association conference in Chicago, where results were presented on Wednesday.

"The data look spectacular, beyond what anybody would have expected," said Dr. Robert Eckel, a University of Colorado cardiologist and past president of the heart association. "It's like a rocket to Jupiter versus one to the moon. I can think of many of my patients who could use the drug right now."

Merck's Dr. Luciano Rossetti agreed. "We are trying not to be too giddy. The potential benefit is enormous," said Rossetti, senior vice president of global scientific strategy at the company, based in Whitehouse Station, New Jersey.

For years, doctors have focused on lowering LDL, or bad cholesterol, to cut heart risks. Statin medicines, sold as Lipitor, Zocor and in generic form, do this. But many statin users still suffer heart attacks, so doctors have been
trying to get LDL to very low levels and to boost HDL, or good cholesterol.

Anacetrapib would be the first drug of its kind. It helps keep fat particles attached to HDL, which carries it in the bloodstream to the liver to be disposed of.

The Merck-sponsored study tested it in 1,623 people already taking statins because they are at higher than usual risk of a heart attack — half had already had one, and many others had conditions like diabetes. An LDL of 100 to 129 is considered good for healthy people, but patients like these should aim for under 100 or even under 70, guidelines say. For HDL, 40
to 59 is OK, but higher is better.

After six months in the study:

* LDL scores fell from 81 to 45 in those on anacetrapib, and from 82 to 77 in those given dummy pills.
* HDL rose from 41 to a whopping 101 in the drug group, and from 40 to 46 in those on dummy pills.


Such large changes have never been seen before, doctors say, and these improvements persisted for at least another year that the study went on.

The study was too small to tell whether anacetrapib lowered deaths, heart attacks or other heart problems, but the trend was in the right direction, with fewer of those cases among patients on the drug. The anacetrapib group also needed significantly fewer procedures to fix clogged arteries.

Importantly, there were no signs of the blood pressure problems that led Pfizer Inc. to walkaway from an $800 million investment in torcetrapib, a similar drug it was developing four years ago.

"This one looks far more potent, without the serious side effects that led to failure," Dr. W. Douglas Weaver, a cardiologist at Henry Ford Health System in Detroit and past president of the American College of Cardiology, said of the new Merck drug. "If proven effective, this will really change practice in the same way aspirin and statins have."

Results of the study also were published
 

Thebigone

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Its be nice if this actually works and no sides occur down the road like the find out with everything. I really dont get these scientists. they spend all this time making something and then BAM ohhh yah i causes cancer or BAM helped your lipids but guess what now your liver is shot. If their education is that good you would think the can figure something out that works.

Also 101 for HDL. that seems wayyyy too high. Isnt too high an HDL also dangerous?
 

Ulamalop

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Dec 22, 2009
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Its be nice if this actually works and no sides occur down the road like the find out with everything.

Pharmaceutical commercials are the best "may cause stomach bleeding, skin rashes. If your eyes cross, stop using. suicidal thoughts and dissociative personality disorder are rare but serious side effects...call your physician immediately if your toe nails fall off."

I think our community has a better understanding than the general public that anything you put into the body, generally does more than 1 thing.
 

totalrecomp

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Pharmaceutical commercials are the best "may cause stomach bleeding, skin rashes. If your eyes cross, stop using. suicidal thoughts and dissociative personality disorder are rare but serious side effects...call your physician immediately if your toe nails fall off."

I think our community has a better understanding than the general public that anything you put into the body, generally does more than 1 thing.

True, I love the one that is for asthma that increases the risk of dying from wait for it........ASTHMA! Hooray!!
 

Ammycin

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Dec 17, 2010
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Reducing the risk of atherosclerosis

Too high or low an HDL are dangerous. My cholesterol levels cannot be reduced by means of diet and exercise alone. So physician prescribed Fenofibrate 200MG. while taking Fenofibrate, it is important to follow a regimen of cholesterol-lowering diet and exercise. Fenofibrate is used to lower cholesterol (lipids) and triglycerides in the blood. I got an info at Internationaldrugmart.com and It decreases bad cholesterol levels namely LDL, thereby reducing the risk of atherosclerosis.
 

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