Although it has been known for many years that dietary lipids influence the development of atherosclerosis, in the past this has been attributed to their effects on blood cholesterol levels. Recent work, however, has shown that CMRs (chylomicron remnants), the lipoproteins which carry dietary lipids in the blood, potentially have a direct role in initiating atherogenesis by influencing vascular function. The Diet and Cardiovascular Health: Chylomicron Remnants and Their Emerging Roles in Vascular Dysfunction in Atherosclerosis Meeting focused attention on studies which have shown that CMRs influence vascular function via interactions with cells of the artery wall, including endothelial cells and macrophages, and also highlighted the part played by CMRs in the development of premature atherosclerosis in conditions such as the metabolic syndrome, which are an increasing cause of heart disease in developed countries.

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