Triglyceride-lowering LPL alleles combined with LDL-C-lowering alleles are associated with an additively improved lipoprotein profile.
Ibi D., Blauw LL., Noordam R., Dollé MET., Jukema JW., Rosendaal FR., Christodoulides C., Neville MJ., Koivula R., Rensen PCN., Karpe F., van Dijk KW.
BACKGROUND AND AIMS: Mendelian randomization studies have shown that triglyceride (TG)- lowering lipoprotein lipase (LPL) alleles and low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol (LDL-C)-lowering alleles have independent beneficial associations on cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk. We aimed to provide further insight into this observation by applying Mendelian randomization analyses of genetically-influenced TG and LDL-C levels on plasma metabolomic profiles. METHODS: We quantified over 100 lipoprotein metabolomic measures in the Netherlands Epidemiology of Obesity (NEO) study (N = 4838) and Oxford Biobank (OBB) (N = 6999) by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy. Weighted genetic scores for TG via five LPL alleles and LDL-C via 19 alleles were calculated and dichotomized by the median, resulting in four genotype combinations of high/low TG and high/low LDL-C. We performed linear regression analyses using a two × two design with the group with genetically-influenced high TG and LDL-C as a reference. RESULTS: Compared to the individual groups with genetically-influenced lower TG or lower LDL-C only, the group with combined genetically-influenced lower TG and LDL-C showed an overall independent and additive pattern of changes in metabolomic measures. Over 100 measures were different (p < 1.35 × 10-3) compared to the reference, with effect sizes and directionality being similar in NEO and OBB. Most notably, levels of all very-low density lipoprotein (VLDL) and LDL sub-particles were lower. CONCLUSIONS: Our findings provide evidence that TG-lowering on top of LDL-C-lowering has additive beneficial effects on the lipoprotein profile compared to TG-lowering or LDL-C-lowering only, which is in accordance with reported additive genetic effects on CVD risk reduction.