Axel Schlitt a, c , Gunnar H. Heine b , Xian-Cheng Jiang d , Martina Messow c , Stefan Blankenberg c , Hans J. Rupprecht c , Christof Ulrich b , Michael Buerke a , Karl Werdan a , Karl J. Lackner c , Hans Köhler b , Matthias Girndt b
16 February 2007
Introduction: Phospholipid transfer protein (PLTP) is mainly involved in high-density lipoprotein (HDL) metabolism. The role of PLTP in atherogenesis is still controversial. We aimed to investigate PLTP activity in hemodialysis (HD) patients, a population which has an increased risk for the development of atherosclerosis. Methods: PLTP activity and other markers were analyzed in blood samples from 68 HD patients and in a matched group of 68 healthy controls. Results: Serum PLTP activity was nearly doubled in HD patients in comparison to healthy controls (median 43.0 vs. 22.4 pmol/µl/h, p < 0.001). In HD patients, PLTP activity correlated with HDL-C (r = 0.342, p = 0.004), but not with CRP (r = –0.057, p = 0.644) or leukocyte count (r = 0.116, p = 0.345). After a follow-up of 2 years, 26 HD patients had died. Kaplan-Meier analyses showed that low CRP (p = 0.047) but neither high HDL-C (p = 0.071) nor low PLTP activity (p = 0.853) were relevantly related to survival of HD patients. Conclusion: An elevated PLTP activity in HD patients may be considered as a further aspect of uremic dyslipidemia in HD patients. However, PLTP activity was not related to markers of inflammation or to survival of HD patients, even though it correlated with HDL-C. Thus, we conclude that PLTP does not influence the prognostically relevant inflammatory process in HD patients although it does influence the composition of HDL particles.