An Alternative: New Cholesterol-Lowering Drug

More than 71 million Americans suffer from high levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol. High LDL cholesterol increases the buildup of plaque in your arteries, leading to a heightened risk of heart disease. According to the CDC, heart disease – a condition that often causes a heart attack or stroke – is responsible for more than 610,000 deaths in the United States every year.

To treat high LDL cholesterol, doctors typically prescribe statins – a type of drug that obstructs LDL cholesterol production. Although they are highly effective, statins have a range of uncomfortable side effects, including muscle pain, indigestion, and disrupted concentration. Because of these side effects, it is estimated that 10-15 percent of patients end their statin prescriptions early.

Fortunately, a new type of drug may soon be available as a low-impact alternative to statins. The new drug, bempedoic acid, targets ATP citrate lyase – a key enzyme in the biochemical pathway for LDL cholesterol production. Unlike statins, bempedoic acid is only active in your liver cells, decreasing the chance of muscular side effects.

Although it is an effective standalone alternative to statins, bempedoic acid appears to work best when used alongside low-level statin therapy. In fact, a three-month study published by The New England Journal of Medicine found that, on average, patient LDL levels dropped by 18 percent when bempedoic acid was used in addition to statins. The encouraging results of this drug trial, which involved a total of 2,230 participants, will likely lead to longer-term clinical testing.

In an interview with NBC News, the lead author of the study, Dr. Kausik Ray, spoke about the value of having multiple treatment options for high cholesterol. “We’ve got a number of different studies now that have shown that it looks to be yet another really good option,” said Dr. Ray. “Doctors like options because patients don’t fit one size, so it gives us an option for people with an unmet need.”

Future bempedoic acid trials will likely test for a correlation between reduced LDL cholesterol and a lower rate of heart attacks and strokes.

Sources: Health Day, NBC News
Photo: Pexels

Get A Free 7 Day Diabetes Meal Plan

Get a free 7-Day Diabetes Meal Plan from Constance Brown-Riggs who is a Registered Dietitian-Certified Diabetes Educator and who is also a national spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association.

Just enter in your email below to download your free Diabetes Meal Plan.

By clicking Submit, you agree to send your info to InformationAboutDiabetes.com who, in addition to 3rd party partners, may contact you with updates, products and information and we agree to use it according to our privacy policy and terms and conditions.

More Articles

Eleven Clinical Studies

After eleven clinical studies and 300,000 participants, researcher Vasanti Malik and her team of researchers...

Diabetic women often have a harder time losing weight than non-diabetic women. A study funded by Jenny Craig proved that diabetic women have an...

Many recent studies have proved that magnesium levels are lower in patients with diabetes than in non-diabetics. This magnesium...

Fluid retention, also known as edema, is a problem that affects many diabetics, especially those with type 2 diabetes...

Some of us might be thrilled if we could manage our blood sugar by sitting in a hot tub or sauna, instead of working up a sweat biking, or using...

More Articles

Cooking and baking with the ancient cereal grain sorghum has health benefits for people with diabetes, and those with weight control issues....

When it comes to certain foods, there are always questions as to whether or not a diabetic can have them without...

With its slightly nutty flavor, chewy texture, and nutritional punch farro is an ancient whole grain worth a place in our pantry.

Farro...

Matcha tea is a rich, creamy, full-bodied beverage with amazing nutritional properties that address several diabetes health concerns.

The...

According to information available through the National Institutes of Health, there’s an estimated 462 million people in the world who are...

Salads are good example of foods that type 2 diabetics can enjoy with relatively low guilt. With the right greens and other elements added, salad...

Remaining gainfully employed is important to many people. Those who live with any form of diabetes may find that some lines of work are more...

Learning that you have diabetes does mean making some lifestyle changes. One of the areas that needs attention is your diet. Most people find that...

One of the more challenging aspects of life as a type 2 diabetic is managing your diet. There’s often the temptation to avoid certain foods...

The green, heavily ridged acorn squash is plentiful in the marketplace this time of year. Though, Acorn squash has a high glycemic index rank of...

A 1300-Calorie diet is a way of eating that limits your daily calorie intake to only 1300 calories a day. This is considered a low calorie diet,...

Maca Root is an editable root vegetable, and is known as Peruvian Ginsing. It is a relative of the radish and turnip family, and is remarkable...

One way to ensure our body gets a variety of nutrients is eating nutrient-dense foods, and one of the most nutrient-dense foods on our planet is...

People who use insulin pumps purposefully break their skin, the body’s main defense against bacteria, to receive continuous doses of life-saving...

When is diabetes not really diabetes? When it is Diabetes Insipidus. Diabetes Insipidus is a rare disorder not related to diabetes mellitus,...