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Keywords:

  • apolipoprotein A-I;
  • apolipoprotein A-II;
  • apolipoprotein B;
  • cardiovascular risk;
  • C-reactive protein;
  • HDL cholesterol;
  • microalbuminuria;
  • non-HDL cholesterol

Kappelle PJWH, Gansevoort RT, Hillege JL, Wolffenbuttel BHR, Dullaart RPF on behalf of the PREVEND study group (University Medical Center Groningen and University of Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands). Apolipoprotein B/A-I and total cholesterol/high-density lipoprotein cholesterol ratios both predict cardiovascular events in the general population independently of nonlipid risk factors, albuminuria and C-reactive protein. J Intern Med 2011; 269: 232–242.

Abstract.  Background.  The total cholesterol/high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (TC/HDL-C) and apolipoprotein (apo) B/A-I ratios predict major adverse cardiovascular events (MACEs). The extent to which these associations are modified by high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) and albuminuria is largely unknown. We compared the strength of these ratios with first MACE in the general population and determined whether these associations remain when taking account of these risk markers.

Subjects and methods.  A prospective case–cohort study was performed among 6948 subjects (PREVEND cohort) without previous cardiovascular disease and who did not use lipid-lowering drugs initially. Fasting serum TC, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), HDL-C, non-HDL-C, apoB, apoA-I, triglycerides, hs-CRP and albuminuria were measured at baseline. The composite endpoint was incident MACE.

Results.  A total of 362 first cardiovascular events occurred during 7.9 years of follow-up. All pro- and anti-atherogenic measures of lipoproteins and apos predicted MACEs in age- and sex-adjusted Cox proportional hazard analyses (P = 0.018 to P < 0.001). The age- and sex-adjusted hazard ratio (HR) was 1.37 [95% confidence interval (CI), 1.26–1.48] for the apoB/apoA-I ratio and 1.24 (95% CI, 1.18–1.29) for the TC/HDL-C ratio (both < 0.001). These relationships were essentially unaltered after additional adjustment for triglyceride levels. Pair-wise comparison revealed that these ratios were of similar importance in age- and sex-adjusted analysis (= 0.397). The HRs of apoB/apoA-I (P < 0.001) and TC/HDL-C (P < 0.001) for risk of MACEs were only marginally attenuated by additional controlling for traditional risk factors (hypertension, diabetes, obesity and smoking), hs-CRP and albuminuria.

Conclusions.  First MACE is associated with both the fasting serum apoB/apoA-I ratio and the TC/HDL-C ratio in the general population, independently of triglycerides, hs-CRP and albuminuria.