A new review addresses the mysteries behind "good" HDL cholesterol and why boosting its levels does not necessarily provide protection from cardiovascular risk for patients. It appears that augmenting the function of HDL cholesterol, rather than its concentration, is key.
The review details the manner in which tissue and systemic inflammation affects the metabolism of HDL cholesterol via several pathways, pointing to ways to improve its production and function.
"Our own clinical studies as well as in vitro and animal studies performed by other groups have demonstrated the significance of adipose, or fat, tissue for optimal HDL cholesterol metabolism and function. Currently, it is accepted that adipose tissue inflammation is one of the hallmarks of systemic inflammation, thus, it is our hypothesis that addressing adipose tissue-associated systemic inflammation will support the atheroprotective role of HDL," said Dr. Demidmaa Tuvdendorj, senior author of the British Journal of Pharmacology article.