Antihyperlipidemic Therapies Targeting PCSK9
Hyperlipidemia is a major cause of cardiovascular disease despite the availability of first-line cholesterol-lowering agents such as statins. A new therapeutic approach to lowering low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol (LDL-C) acts by blocking LDL-receptor degradation by serum proprotein convertase subtilisin kexin 9 (PCSK9). Human monoclonal antibodies that target PCSK9 and its interaction with the LDL receptor are now in clinical trials (REGN727/SAR23653, AMG145, and RN316). These agents are administered by either subcutaneous or intravenous routes, and have been shown to have major LDL-C and apolipoprotein B effects when combined with statins. A phase III clinical trial program evaluating clinical endpoints is now in progress. Other PCSK9-targeted approaches are in early stages of investigation, including natural inhibitors of PCSK9, RNA interference, and antisense inhibitors.
General Internal Medicine