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Distribution of risk factors, plasma lipids, lipoproteins and dyslipidemias in a small Mediterranean island: the Ustica Project

  • Autori: Barbagallo, C.; Polizzi, F.; Severino, M.; Onorato, F.; Noto, D.; Cefalu', A.; Rizzo, M.; Notarbartolo, A.; Averna, M.
  • Anno di pubblicazione: 2002
  • Tipologia: Articolo in rivista (Articolo in rivista)
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Background and Aim: The populations of the Mediterranean area have a low incidence of cardiovascular disease (CHD). The aims of this paper are: 1) to present demographic data of the population of Ustica, a small island in the southern part of the Tyrrhenian sea that has reduced communications with the mainland and a diet presumably rich in fish; and 2) to evaluate the distribution of risk fa tors, plasma lipids, lipoproteins and dyslipidemias in this population. Methods and Results: We invited all of the free-living resident population aged more than 14 years (about 800 individuals) to participate in the study; 57 responded, for a participation rate of about 73%. The distribution of cardiovascular risk factors, plasma lipids, lipoproteins and dyslipidemias were evaluated in all of the subjects. More than 60% of the population was out of the normal weight range. Total and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels were respectively 207.4 +/- 46.7 and 141.7 +/- 42.4 mg/dL, and similar in males and females. Lipoprotein (a) (Lp[a]) levels presented the classical "skewed" distribution and, among the apolipoprotein (a) isoforms, there was a clear predominance of intermediate-sized kringle IV repeats. Overall, 43% of the subjects had a lipid disorder: the prevalence of hypercholesterolemia was 22.8% (3.2% with severe hypercholesterolemia 300 mg/dL); low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels were found in 22.5%; the so-called lipid triad in 2.1% ;and high Lp(a) levels in 6.2%. Large familial clusters were found for some lipid disorders. Conclusions: A large prevalence of body weight disturbances and high frequency of dyslipidemias are the main characteristics of this population, Ongoing data and future longitudinal studies will better clarify the relative influence of each parameter on CHD risk and total mortality.