Cholesterol vaccination

A promising new vaccine to lower cholesterol may decrease your chances of having a heart attack. AT04A is a vaccine that uses the immune system to develop antibodies that target enzymes that help regulate cholesterol.

Dr Gunther Staffler, chief technology officer at the Austrian biotech company AFFiRis, says that people who currently take statins to lower their cholesterol may in the future opt to get an annual vaccination of AT04A instead.

This is different than a traditional vaccine as it is immunotherapy rather than attacking a virus or bacteria. Instead it is directs the immune system to target a protein made by your own body.

Mice that were fed fatty foods had their cholesterol lowered 53% by the vaccine according to the European Health Journal. “If these findings translate successfully into humans, this could mean that, as the induced antibodies persist for months after a vaccination, we could develop a long-lasting therapy that, after the first vaccination, just needs an annual booster,” Dr. Staffler said.

A Phase I trial of 72 patients at the University of Vienna will be concluding this year. If that proves successful, the trials will widen before being released as a option to the general public.

This could revolutionize how people living with high cholesterol live. It would marginalize the need for medication and possibly save a lot of lives.

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Source: Independent