Urinary excretion of mevalonic acid as an indicator of cholesterol synthesis.

Department of Clinical Pharmacology, University of Bonn, Germany.
The Journal of Lipid Research (Impact Factor: 4.39). 10/1996; 37(10):2193-201.
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Urinary excretion of mevalonic acid was investigated as an indicator of cholesterol synthesis. In normolipemic volunteers, excretion of mevalonic acid averaged 3.51 +/- 0.59 (SD) micrograms/kg x day1; (n = 24) and was not different from patients with hypercholesterolemia (3.30 +/- 0.92 micrograms/kg x day1; n = 24). In patients with cerebrotendineous xanthomatosis, the excretion was significantly higher (8.55 +/- 1.92 micrograms/kg x day1; n = 6, P < 0.001) but comparable to volunteers treated with cholestyramine (6.69 +/- 2.6 micrograms/kg x day1; n = 5). A significant correlation was found between 24-h excretion of mevalonic acid and cholesterol synthesis (r = 0.835; n = 35; P < 0.001). The coefficient of variation of excretion of mevalonic acid during 3 consecutive days was small (9.8%; n = 7). However, urinary output of mevalonic acid was significantly higher during the night (164 +/- 14 micrograms/12-h) than during the day (129 +/- 9 micrograms/12-h; n = 11; P < 0.05). In patients treated with simvastatin (40 mg/day) for 6 weeks, the ratio of mevalonic acid to creatinine in a morning urine sample decreased significantly compared to pretreatment values (110 +/- 25 micrograms/g vs. 66 +/- 25 micrograms/g; P < 0.001). Furthermore, the ratio of mevalonic acid to creatinine in a morning urine sample correlated with the ratio from the 24-h collection period (r = 0.714; n = 34; P < 0.001). The results indicate that the analysis of urinary mevalonic acid, either in 24-h collection or in a single morning sample, is an attractive method for evaluation of long and very short term changes of the rates of cholesterol synthesis.

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