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ACS Nano Publication

The research group of prof. Jan Skov Pedersen in cooperation with a team of researchers from Malmö University publish article in ACS NANO.


Atherosclerosis is the build-up of plaque inside the arteries broadly involved in cardio-vascular deceases, which is the leading cause of death in the western hemisphere. The main clinical indicator, low density lipoprotein (LDL = the ‘bad’ cholesterol) is believed to be involved in the onset of the process of depositing fat to the vessel wall. LDL particles in the blood have a range of sizes and compositions, and there are variations among different individuals.

The compositional variations might be responsible for the current clinical markers failure at properly predicting the risk for atherosclerosis. Understanding the relationship between LDL structure and composition is the key to unravelling the specific role of various LDL components in the development and/or prevention of atherosclerosis.

We have developed a new model for determination of the structure of the LDL particles, using small-angle X-ray scattering data. The model not only gives the overall structure, but also determines the particular internal layering of the fats inside the LDL core, as well as changes in the conformation of the protein component, which wraps the fatty core. The new approach allows a fast assessment of the structure and can be used routinely in research projects. This approach, now allows the monitoring of structural changes in the LDL upon different stresses from the environment, such as changes in temperature, oxidation, or external agents used or currently in development against atherosclerotic plaque build-up and which are targeting the LDL.

Read article

For further information please contact

Jan Skov Pedersen, Prof., Dr. Scient., R.
Department of Chemistry and Interdisciplinary Nanoscience Center (iNANO)

Aarhus University
Gustav Wieds Vej 14
Building 1590-252
8000 Aarhus C

Phone: +45 871 55921