High-Density Lipoprotein Proteomics: Identifying New Drug Targets and Biomarkers by Understanding Functionality
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Recent proteomics studies on human plasma high-density lipoprotein (HDL) have discovered up to 50 individual protein constituents. Many of these have known functions that vary surprisingly from the lipid transport roles commonly thought to mediate HDL’s ability to protect from coronary artery disease. Given newly discovered roles in inflammation, protease inhibition, complement regulation, and innate immunity, many have begun to view HDL as a broad collection of distinct particle subfamilies, each distinguished by unique protein compositions and functions. Herein we review recent applications of high-resolution proteomics to HDL and summarize evidence supporting the idea of HDL functional subspeciation. These studies have set the stage for a more complete understanding of the molecular basis of HDL functional heterogeneity and hold promise for the identification of new biomarkers that can predict disease or evaluate the success of clinical interventions.