Plasma lipid and lipoprotein pattern and platelet activity were studied in blood samples derived from veins and arteries of 10 healthy male subjects. A significant reduction in plasma high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, triglyceride and protein levels, as well as in plasma apolipoprotein A-I, was found when lipoproteins were derived from arterial blood in comparison to venous blood. All other lipoproteins were not significantly changed. Platelet activity measured as plasma beta-thromboglobulin levels and as collagen-induced platelet aggregation and 14C-serotonin release in platelet-rich plasma was markedly elevated when platelets were derived from arterial blood. Since reduced plasma HDL concentration and platelet activation are known risk factors for atherosclerosis, our study may suggest a further explanation for the presence of atherosclerotic lesions in arteries but not in veins.
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