The Role of Lipoproteins in Human Atherosclerosis (Lecture I)

  • K. W. Walton
Part of the NATO Advanced Study Institutes Series book series (NSSA, volume 15)


The atherosclerotic plaque at all stages of its development, and wherever it occurs in the arterial tree, is characterised by lipid deposition. Earlier suggestions that the lipid is derived solely from breakdown (“fatty metamorphosis”) of intrinsic components of the arterial wall (1), or originates from blood clots or cellular components of the blood deposited on the endothelial surface and later incorporated into the wall (2), are no longer widely entertained (for review, see Ref.3). Instead, current research seems broadly to support the hypothesis of Virchow (4) that the lipid in atherosclerotic lesions derives from the “insudation” of plasma into the arterial wall. However the original hypothesis requires modification and restatement in terms of modern knowledge to take account of (a) what is now known of the forms in which lipid is transported in the blood; (b) the known association of risk factors with the occurrence of atherosclerosis; and (c) the mechanisms whereby some of the more important risk factors operate at the level of the arterial wall. The present communication will deal with the role of lipoproteins in the evolution of the atherosclerotic plaque. The accompanying communications will deal with the influence of other factors on this process.


Atherosclerotic Plaque Arterial Wall Atherosclerotic Lesion Osmic Acid Human Atherosclerosis 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1978

Authors and Affiliations

  • K. W. Walton
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Experimental PathologyUniversity of BirminghamBirmingham 15England

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