The oxidation hypothesis for CHD (coronary heart disease) is attractive; however, the almost universal failure of antioxidant vitamin supplementation as a CVD (cardiovascular disease) risk modifier challenges the oxidation hypothesis, at least as a concept that easily ‘translates’ into clinical benefit for the population. At the same time, quality prospective data on lipid or protein oxidation markers as predictors of vascular events are sparse. In the present issue of Clinical Science, Woodward and co-workers provide much needed prospective data examining the relationship between markers of oxidative damage and CHD outcome in a general population. Despite noting the expected associations between several established CHD risk factors and CHD events, no significant link was observed between measured oxidation markers and CHD risk, a finding which further challenges the oxidation hypothesis for CHD.

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