Seeking a Unique Lipid Signature Predicting Cardiovascular Disease Risk
There is now overwhelming evidence that alterations in lipid metabolism underlie the pathogenesis of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (CVD). However, research in this area has primarily focused on abundant plasma lipids such as cholesterol, triglycerides, and oxidized phospholipids that are largely carried on circulating lipoproteins1,2. Circulating levels of abundant lipids can provide valuable information for CVD risk stratification, yet the majority of CVD risk cannot be explained by traditional lipid risk factors3. Over the last decade there have been rapid advances in mass spectrometry-based methods to comprehensively annotate the entire "lipidome," which includes a large variety of lipid molecular species including non-lipoprotein associated lipids and less abundant signaling lipids that impact disease. This new field of "lipidomics" provides a powerful platform for identification of potential lipid biomarker signatures predicting disease risk, but also provides clues into novel lipid metabolic pathways that may be directly involved in the pathogenesis of disease.
- Received February 27, 2014.
- Accepted March 7, 2014.