Current recommendations of the Adult Treatment Panel and the Children and Adolescents Treatment Panel of the National Cholesterol Education Program make the concentration of low-density lipoproteins cholesterol (LDL-C) in serum the basis for the classification and treatment of hypercholesterolemia. Numerous methodologies for the determination of serum LDL-C concentrations, in research and clinical laboratories, have been described. Here, we review the principles, performance, and limitations of major current methodologies for determining LDL-C concentrations. These methods include sequential and density-gradient ultracentrifugation, chromatographic and electrophoretic techniques, and precipitation methods. In addition, the advantages and disadvantages of estimating LDL-C concentration by the Friedewald equation, the most commonly used approach in clinical laboratories, are addressed.
- heart disease
- risk factor