Measurements of transport of triglycerides (TG) in very low density lipoproteins (VLDL) were carried out in 59 patients by injection of radioactive glycerol, determinations of specific activities of VLDL-TG for 48 h thereafter, and treatment of the data by multicompartmental analysis. The patients were divided into three groups: normal weight (89-120% ideal weight), mildly obese (120-135% ideal weight), and markedly obese (135% ideal weight). They had varying levels of VLDL-TG ranging from normal to markedly elevated. In many subjects, there was a positive correlation between concentrations and transport of VLDL indicating that overproduction of VLDL-TG contributed to hypertriglyceridemia. In others, and particularly in several markedly obese subjects, transport rates were greatly increased without significant hypertriglyceridemia, suggesting that they had enhanced capacity to clear TG. In all groups, however, there were patients whose degree of hypertriglyceridemia seemed out of proportion to their transport rates. This finding and the fact that many patients have increased secretion of VLDL-TG without elevated plasma TG suggests that both overproduction of VLDL-TG and insufficient enhancement of clearance contributed to the development of hypertriglyceridemia.
Scott M. Grundy, Henry Y. I. Mok, Loren Zech, Daniel Steinberg, Mones Berman