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Open Badges Editorial

High-density lipoprotein: does it have a dark side?

Joan M Von Feldt

Author Affiliations

Rheumatology Division, University of Pennsylvania, 5 Maloney, Suite 509, 36th & Spruce Street Philadelphia, PA l9104-4283, USA

Arthritis Research & Therapy 2008, 10:121  doi:10.1186/ar2527

See related review article by Hahn et al.,

Published: 31 October 2008


There are proven pleiotropic anti-atherogenic actions of high-density lipoprotein (HDL). However, in systemic inflammation, HDL can have pro-inflammatory properties that may contribute to accelerated atherosclerosis, likely mediated by a change in the structure of HDL to pro-inflammatory HDL (PiHDL). Validation of the technically challenging assay for PiHDL, and confirmation of an association of PiHDL in multiple populations with known risk for atherosclerosis will eventually provide a useful biomarker. Identification of PiHDL in patients with rheumatic disease may help identify patients at risk of accelerated atherosclerosis, and focus our therapeutic interventions.