Background Many of the pleiotropic effects of statins remain to be elucidated. Hypothesis Different statin regimens with similar lipid-lowering efficacy may have different effects on biomarkers of atherothrombosis including lipoprotein-associated phospholipase A2 (Lp-PLA2). Methods After a 4-week dietary lead-in, 82 hypercholesterolemic patients were randomized to 1 of 2 treatment groups: atorvastatin 20 mg or atorvastatin/ezetimibe 5 mg/5 mg. After 8 weeks of drug treatment, the groups were compared for percent change in lipid parameters, Lp-PLA2, interleukin-6 (IL-6), monocyte chemoattractant protein-1, and fibrinogen. Results Low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) lowering was comparable between the 2 groups (-47% ± 11% and -49% ± 7% in the atorvastatin and combination groups, respectively). Although Lp-PLA2 was reduced in both groups, the reduction was greater in the atorvastatin group (-42% and -9% [median], respectively, P = 0.03). Although IL-6 was decreased only in the atorvastatin group, IL-6 changes were not significantly different between the 2 groups. The changes in monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 and fibrinogen were similar in each group. Conclusions Atorvastatin monotherapy was stronger at reducing plasma Lp-PLA2 than the low-dose atorvastatin/ezetimibe combination after equivalent LDL-C lowering. This result may provide evidence of potential statin effects beyond the lowering of LDL-C.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine