1. The intravenous fat-tolerance test and serum lipid and lipoprotein measurements were carried out in ninety-three normal subjects, fifty-one patients with ischaemic heart disease and thirty patients with peripheral vascular disease.
2. The fractional turnover rate of exogenous triglyceride was significantly slower in patients with ischaemic heart disease and in patients with peripheral vascular disease than in normal men. The rate was also slower in normal men than normal women.
3. Serum triglyceride and cholesterol concentrations were higher in both vascular disease groups than in control subjects.
4. The proportion of both groups of patients who had a subnormal fractional turnover rate of exogenous triglyceride was 35%, and 32% of patients had hypertriglyceridaemia in the fasting state; 27% of patients were hypercholesterolaemic.
5. Although the intravenous fat-tolerance test did not provide significantly better discrimination between cardiovascular patients and control subjects than did measurement of serum triglyceride, the results suggest that hypertriglyceridaemia in such patients may be separable into a group in which impaired triglyceride clearance may be partly responsible, and a group in which overproduction of serum triglyceride may be the major mechanism of the hyperlipidaemia.