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OMRF research may provide new clues to battling bad cholesterol

Scientists at the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation are studying how the immune system plays a role in the buildup of bad cholesterol and fat in arteries.
BY GREG ELWELL Published: January 22, 2013

“Plaque buildup creates a vicious cycle, so we're interested in breaking that cycle,” he said. “As we continue our research, we're looking for ways to intervene in the formation of foam cells that would allow macrophages to absorb the LDL and then gracefully leave the system without contributing to atherosclerosis.”

If the research is successful, it could lead to medications that prevent hardening of arteries and reduce the risk of deadly blood clots.

Research assistant Caroline Kinter is lead author on the paper and Fleming Scholars Halee Patel and Jillian Lundie contributed to the research. The research was funded by a grant from the National Institute on Aging, a part of the National Institutes of Health.

Greg Elwell is a public affairs specialist with Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation.

OMRF ( is an independent, nonprofit biomedical research institute dedicated to understanding and developing more effective treatments for human diseases. Its scientists focus on such critical research areas as cancer, lupus and cardiovascular disease.