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Cholesterol, Atherosclerosis and Coronary Disease in the UK, 1950–2000, vol. 27.

Reynolds, LA and Tansey, EM (Eds). (2006) Cholesterol, Atherosclerosis and Coronary Disease in the UK, 1950–2000, vol. 27. [Book]. Wellcome Witnesses to Twentieth Century Medicine: Vol.27. Wellcome Trust Centre for the History of Medicine at UCL: London. Green open access


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Cholesterol began to be accepted after the Second World War as a significant cause of atherosclerosis and associated conditions such as coronary heart disease (CHD). This Witness Seminar, chaired by Professor Michael Oliver, included a discussion of the basic research on cholesterol. Moving on, early epidemiological studies demonstrated the relationship between excess saturated fat consumption and elevated levels of cholesterol, although cholesterol alone did not explain all population differences. Work on lipoprotein metabolism pointed to hypercholesterolaemia as one of, if not the major, risk factors for CHD, culminating in the development of cholesterol-lowering drugs, particularly the successful statins, available in the UK from the 1980s, and confirmed by randomized controlled trials. The role of diet in heart disease had always been controversial in the UK, although extreme diets could reduce cholesterol, patient conformity remains difficult. Later, recommended limits on the composition of dietary fat were agreed, and assisted by the food industry’s introduction of functional foods such as cholesterol-lowering margarine. An introduction by Dr Nick Myant and appendices on the diet–heart hypothesis and the development of lovastatin compliment the transcript. Contributors include Professor David Barker, Professor John Betteridge, Professor Gustav Born, Professor Richard Bruckdorfer, Professor George Davey Smith, Professor Paul Durrington, Professor David Galton, Dr Arthur Hollman, Professor Steve Humphries Professor Gordon Lowe, Professor Vincent Marks, Dr Paul Miller, Professor Jerry Morris, Professor Chris Packard, Professor Stuart Pocock, Professor Kalevi Pyörälä, Professor Thomas Sanders, Professor James Scott, Dr Elspeth Smith, Professor Anne Soutar, Professor Gilbert Thompson, Professor Hugh Tunstall-Pedoe, Professor Neville Woolf and Professor John S Yudkin.

Type: Book
Title: Cholesterol, Atherosclerosis and Coronary Disease in the UK, 1950–2000, vol. 27.
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Keywords: cholesterol, atherosclerosis, thrombolysis, coronary heart disease, lipoprotein metabolism, hypercholesterolaemia, statins, dietary fat
UCL classification: UCL > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/2053
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