New Plasma Ceramides Blood Test Assesses Heart Attack Risk

ceramides-pressheroMayo Medical Laboratories (MML) has launched a new type of blood test that will be used to predict adverse cardiovascular events in patients with progressing coronary artery disease (CAD). The test measures blood concentrations of plasma ceramides, a class of lipids that are highly linked to cardiovascular disease processes. A recent article in Clinical Lab Products takes a closer look at the test.

The new test will help clinicians identify at-risk individuals and is available to Mayo Clinic patients and to health care providers worldwide. During test development, MML collaborated with cardiovascular disease specialist Zora Biosciences, from Espoo, Finland.

Jeff Meeusen, Ph.D. Clinical Chemist Mayo Clinic
Jeff Meeusen, Ph.D.

“Through our strong collaboration with Zora Biosciences, we hope our new test will improve the evaluation of individuals at risk for cardiovascular disease,” says Jeff Meeusen, Ph.D., a clinical chemist and Co-Director of Cardiovascular Laboratory Medicine at Mayo Clinic. “This test is for highly specialized cases—for example, patients with progressing coronary artery disease despite treatment and control of their risk factors, or for young patients with premature CAD.”

The test might also be used to determine whether treatment is necessary for individuals considered to be at intermediate risk according to the risk calculator from the American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association.

Allan Jaffe, M.D. Mayo Clinic Cardiologist
Allan Jaffe, M.D.

“Plasma ceramides are promising biomarkers for the prediction of adverse CV events in either primary or secondary prevention,” says Allan Jaffe, M.D., cardiologist with joint appointments in the Department of Cardiovascular Diseases and the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology at Mayo Clinic, and Chair of the Division of Clinical Core Laboratory Services. “The studies to date suggest that the signals observed presage events within the next five-year period. Risk conferred by plasma ceramides appears to be independent of other established and novel biomarkers, and there are preliminary indications that high ceramide concentrations can be modified by common lipid-lowering therapies.”

View the Test in Focus for more test information.

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Kelley Schreiber

Kelley Schreiber is a Marketing Channel Manager at Mayo Medical Laboratories. She is the principle editor and writer of Insights and leads social media and direct marketing strategy. Kelley has worked at Mayo Clinic since 2013. Outside of work, you can find Kelley running, traveling, playing with her new kitten, and exploring new foods.