Monthly shot lowers cholesterol 66 percent: study

March 26, 2012

A monthly injection of an experimental drug made by the US biotech firm Amgen reduced patients' cholesterol by up to 66 percent, according to a small study described at a US cardiology conference.

The early phase 1 clinical trial, designed mainly to see if the treatment was safe, followed 51 patients who received a shot of the drug, AMG 145, either once every two or every four weeks.

Among trial subjects were already taking high doses of cholesterol-lowering drugs, known as , and who got the shot every two weeks, the dangerous type of (LDL) in their bodies dropped by an average of 63 percent by the eighth week.

And those who were on low doses of statins and received the drug every four weeks saw a slightly higher average drop in LDL cholesterol -- 66 percent by the end of the same time period.

No deaths or were recorded during the preliminary study, which was presented for the the first time on Sunday at the American College of Cardiology annual conference.

The drug is a fully that inhibits PCSK9, a protein that reduces the liver's ability to remove LDL cholesterol from the blood.

"Early studies have shown that AMG 145 lowers levels of PCSK9 in the body and brings LDL-cholesterol levels down as a result," said a statement by Sean Harper, executive vice president of Research and Development at Amgen.

"Based on these results, Amgen initiated a robust phase 2 program that will provide a deeper understanding of the benefit-risk profile of inhibiting PCSK9 in a wide variety of patients whose cannot be controlled with existing therapies."

More data from the phase 2 study is expected later this year.

Finding alternate ways to treat high cholesterol is important for many patients who either cannot tolerate statin therapy or who have difficulty getting their cholesterol counts low enough with diet changes and contemporary statins.

High LDL cholesterol is a leading factor in the development of heart disease and is considered a major public health issue worldwide.

Explore further: Injection lowers cholesterol in preliminary human trial

Related Stories

Injection lowers cholesterol in preliminary human trial

November 14, 2011
Patients unable to control their cholesterol levels with medications may someday be able to lower their "bad" cholesterol with a shot, according to research presented at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions ...

Low 'bad' cholesterol levels may be linked to cancer risk

March 26, 2012
(HealthDay) -- There may be a link between low levels of "bad" low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and increased cancer risk, according to new research.

Statin alternative looks promising in early trials

March 22, 2012
(HealthDay) -- Administration of REGN727, a monoclonal antibody to proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin 9 (PCSK9), significantly reduces low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol levels, according to the results of three ...

No proof fibrate drugs reduce heart risk in diabetes patients on statins

August 10, 2011
Type 2 diabetes patients, who face higher risk of cardiovascular disease, often take a combination of medications designed to lower their LDL or "bad" cholesterol and triglyceride levels while raising their HDL or "good" ...

Recommended for you

Could aggressive blood pressure treatments lead to kidney damage?

July 18, 2017
Aggressive combination treatments for high blood pressure that are intended to protect the kidneys may actually be damaging the organs, new research from the University of Virginia School of Medicine suggests.

Quantifying effectiveness of treatment for irregular heartbeat

July 17, 2017
In a small proof-of-concept study, researchers at Johns Hopkins report a complex mathematical method to measure electrical communications within the heart can successfully predict the effectiveness of catheter ablation, the ...

Concerns over side effects of statins stopping stroke survivors taking medication

July 17, 2017
Negative media coverage of the side effects associated with taking statins, and patients' own experiences of taking the drugs, are among the reasons cited by stroke survivors and their carers for stopping taking potentially ...

Study discovers anticoagulant drugs are being prescribed against safety advice

July 17, 2017
A study by researchers at the University of Birmingham has shown that GPs are prescribing anticoagulants to patients with an irregular heartbeat against official safety advice.

Protein may protect against heart attack

July 14, 2017
DDK3 could be used as a new therapy to stop the build-up of fatty material inside the arteries

Heart study finds faulty link between biomarkers and clinical outcomes

July 14, 2017
Surrogate endpoints (biomarkers), which are routinely used in clinical research to test new drugs, should not be trusted as the ultimate measure to approve new health interventions in cardiovascular medicine, according to ...


Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

not rated yet Mar 26, 2012
I might need something like this.

I'm still working with my doctor, but I'm on two Cholesterol medicines and a blood pressure medicine right now, and I'm only 31.

I'm hoping I can get my activity levels up and at least work on exercise. I have cut getting "doubles" at fast food restaurants, and later today I am going to speak with my old Martial Arts instructor and see if he's taking new adult students. I need the work out.

I'm glad to see this sort of progress. High blood pressure and cholesterol seems to run in our family. Even the fittest people in the family have this problem. My LDL and triglyceride is about twice the maximum range

But I'm tired of taking it lying down. I've decided I'm going to fight back and get my health back to what it should be, one way or another.

I've never been a gym person. I need a fun and creative way to stay active, and MA used to provide that for me. I probably should never have quit, or at least gone back earlier. Now is the time for change
1 / 5 (1) Mar 26, 2012
Hey're on the right track....we can all improve our health with diet modifications and exercise. My 80 year Dad recently had his cholesterol meds eliminated as he has improved his situation with proper eating habits and exercise ....if you don't like up and buy a home elliptical.

We can all improve at virtually any age.

Hang in there buddy.
not rated yet Mar 26, 2012
I mean, I was always a bit more of an eater than I should have been, but when I was working out 10 hours per week, 5 karate, 5 cardio kickboxing, etc, it didn't hurt me.

Now, since then, over the years, my eating mostly stayed the same, but my lifestyle gradually went to almost totally sedentary. About the only thing improved in my diet is I don't eat sweets or ice cream any more, and I eat a few more vegetables now than in the past.

I'm not morbidly obese, but I'm a weak, flabby 205 to 210, when I probably should be 180 to 185 of solid muscle.

That's unacceptable.
not rated yet Mar 26, 2012
Well, I did the introductory class and survived for about 20 to 25 minutes of legit workout. After that I was sort of on and off again.

It's shocking how dynamic and explosive this style of workout is, and how far I have to go.

It's probably going to take me several weeks just to get where I can complete the whole workout.

He has adopted the Krav Maga system and the workout is very explosive. Before he was leaning in that direction anyway, but the focus was on a lot of sets of modest amounts of traditional workouts. This system in terms of the fitness is about doing one or two sets of explosive reps as fast as possible, and then quickly changing to a different exercise.

Never done anything quite like it, even before when I was doing cardio kickboxing at least not this explosive. The fighting fundamentals are similar but not identical, but I was gasping for air after just about 5 to 10 minutes.

So that says how far I have to go, but I'm going to get it done.
1 / 5 (1) Mar 27, 2012
Sounds intense. I like the whole idea......although I too would have to work up to that. I work from home so it's kinda' easy for me to adhere to a daily routine. I have the whole 'home gym' deal with an elliptical. Which is why I suggested it earlier. My cholesterol was also high and I am on meds for it as well. My last physical showed balanced levels so I am pleased to be moving in the right direction. Hopefully I will be off by the next check up.

Keep at it 'Lurker' only good things can come from it....any way you look at it. Even if you have to stay on meds (largely genetic from what you have said). At least you'll be in better shape. Quality of life is the key to happiness in the long run....sounds cheezy I of luck.

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.