The Lipid Research Group is a world leader in researching high-density lipoproteins (HDL) - the cholesterol fraction in blood known as "good cholesterol". HDL is known to protect against the development of heart disease, and the Lipid Group studies how HDLs are regulated by the body and how their protective properties can be increased. The group has discovered that not all HDLs are created equal, but vary in size, shape and chemical composition and not all HDL protect against heart disease to the same degree. The Lipid Research Group is on a mission to find which HDL's protect best against heart disease, and to understand the mechanism of how they do it.
In a major breakthrough, the group has developed a new way of synthesising HDLs from their base ingredients of proteins and fats. In fact, The Heart Research Institute leads the world in preparing these unique particles, called reconstituted HDL (rHDL). The huge potential of this discovery for therapy has spurred many joint studies with research laboratories both nationally and internationally.
The group has recently made the major discovery that HDL's are able to block this inflammation, which is an important factor in the development of atherosclerosis. By doing so they have identified a new mechanism by which HDLs can protect against heart disease and stroke. This work has major implications for the development of new therapies for heart disease prevention.
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