Diabetic dyslipidaemia is characterised by retention of atherogenic particles, which are depleted of cholesterol. Therefore, calculating or measuring LDL or VLDL cholesterol may not reflect the actual number of these atherogenic particles. We examined the potential role of apolipoprotein B in the risk stratification of Omani patients with type 2 diabetes and dyslipidaemia. Two hundred and twenty-one subjects with type 2 diabetes and 67 healthy controls were recruited. Diabetic subjects had significantly higher serum levels of triglycerides (P < 0.0001), non-HDL cholesterol (P < 0.0001), and total/HDL cholesterol ratio (P < 0.04) and lower levels of HDL cholesterol (P < 0.0001) and lipoprotein(a) compared to nondiabetic subjects. The ratio of apoB/LDL cholesterol ratio was significantly higher (P < 0.002) among diabetic compared to nondiabetic subjects. Sixty percent of the diabetic subjects with abnormal apoB of >1.2 g/L had an LDL cholesterol of less than 4.2 mmol/L compared to 7% of the nondiabetic subjects (sensitivity; 40% versus 93%, respectively). Furthermore, diabetic subjects with ischaemic heart disease (IHD) had significantly higher (P < 0.003) apoB/non-HDL cholesterol ratio compared to those without IHD. These findings suggest that the ratios of apoB/LDL cholesterol and apoB/non-HDL cholesterol may have a role in the risk stratification of diabetic patients with dyslipidaemia.
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