Atherosclerotic Cardiovascular Disease

The causal role of LDL-cholesterol in atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease

Short animation detailing the role of LDL-cholesterol in the development of disease and the clinical sequalae associated with disease progression.

For a clinical narrative on ACLY inhibition in atherosclerotic disease review this reference.

Hear from the experts

Experts share their perspectives on “lower is better and lowest is best.”

Elevated LDL-C leads to cardiovascular disease (CVD), the number one cause of death globally. 5,6

In the US, CVD accounts for one in three deaths.3,4,5 One-third of deaths from CVD occur prematurely in people under 70 years of age.6

The WHO estimates heart disease deaths will increase 26% by 2030.7

Nearly 80%

of very high-risk patients did not meet a guideline-recommended LDL-C target2

8.2 million

patients with ASCVD in the U.S. don’t reach their LDL-C goals despite taking a statin10

9.6 million

patients with ASCVD in the U.S. are not on any lipid lowering therapy10

High low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) has been treatable for decades, but something is not working. Atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease continues to increase. Guideline LDL-C targets are not met. Patients give up on their medicines entirely. The problem? Patients’ needs are not being met by their cholesterol medicines.
In a recently published analysis, the US prevalence of ASCVD in 2019 was estimated at > 24 million patients. The authors noted that 72.6% of subjects with ASCVD had an LDL-C greater than the national guideline recommendation of less than 70 mg/dL. In these same subjects, only one in four were on a high-intensity statin, and over 40% were not on any lipid lowering therapy.10 
Data suggest that statins cause more side effects in women than in men.7, 8, 9

Many patients who do everything right – the hard work of changing their diet, exercising and taking their medicine as prescribed – still don’t reach their goals.


  1. ZS Associates primary and secondary research, Sep-Oct 2018. Primary research N = 350 healthcare practitioners
  2. Yan AT, Yan RT, Tan M, et al. Contemporary management of dyslipidemia in high-risk patients: targets still not met. Am J Med. 2006;119(8):676-683.
  3. Benjamin EJ, Muntner P, Alonso A, et al. Heart disease and stroke statistics—2019 update: a report from the American Heart Association. Circulation. 2019;139:00–00.
  4. World Health Organization. Cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) fact sheet. Accessed October 14, 2020.
  5. World Health Organization. The challenge of cardiovascular disease – quick statistics. Accessed November 30, 2020.
  6. Global Status Report on Noncommunicable Diseases 2014. Geneva, Switzerland: World Health Organization; 2014. bitstream/10665/148114/1/9789241564854_eng.pdf. Accessed January 11, 2021.
  1. Culver AL, Ockene IS, Balasubramanian R et al. Statin use and risk of diabetes mellitus in postmenopausal women in the Women’s Health Initiative. Arch. Int. Med. 172(2), 144–152 (2012).
  2. Barbara H Roberts & Rita F Redberg (2013) Gender disparity in statin response: are statins less effective in women?, Clinical Lipidology, 8:2, 161-163, DOI: 10.2217/ clp.13.7
  3. Ridker PM, Danielson E, Fonseca FA et al. Rosuvastatin to prevent vascular events in men and women with elevated C-reactive protein. N. Engl. J. Med. 359, 2195–2207 (2009)
  4. Gu et al. Lipid treatment status and goal attainment among patients with atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease in the United states. A 2019 update. Am J Prev Cardiol. 2022 Jun; 10: 100336.