Cancer Biology and Cancer Medicine Lecture

Nobel laureate Harold Varmus discusses the intersection of cancer biology and cancer medicine. Varmus, president of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York, earned his Nobel Prize for discovering retroviral oncogenes that can cause cancer. That work changed the way people thought about cancer: Rather than being a disease caused by environmental exposure, it could result from mutations in specific genes. Now, much cancer research and the search for therapeutics focus on genetic changes in cancer.

Menstrual Cycle

Menstrual cycle is a recurring cycle of physiologic changes that occurs in reproductive-age females. Overt menstruation (where there is blood-flow from the vagina) occurs primarily in humans and close evolutionary relatives such as chimpanzees. The females of other species of placental mammal have estrous cycles, in which the endometrium is completely reabsorbed by the animal (covert menstruation) at the end of its reproductive cycle.
The menstrual cycle is under the control of the hormone system and is necessary for reproduction. Menstrual cycles are counted from the first day of menstrual flow, because the onset of menstruation corresponds closely with the hormonal cycle. The menstrual cycle may be divided into several phases, and the length of each phase varies from woman to woman and cycle to cycle.

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During the follicular phase the lining of the uterus thickens, stimulated by gradually increasing amounts of estrogen. Follicles in the ovary begin developing under the influence of a complex interplay of hormones, and after several days one or occasionally two follicles become dominant (non-dominant follicles atrophy and die). The dominant follicle releases an ovum or egg in an event called ovulation. (An egg that is fertilized by a spermatozoon will become a zygote, taking one to two weeks to travel down the fallopian tubes to the uterus. If the egg is not fertilized within about a day of ovulation, it will die and be absorbed by the woman's body.) After ovulation the remains of the dominant follicle in the ovary become a corpus luteum; this body has a primary function of producing large amounts of progesterone. Under the influence of progesterone, the endometrium (uterine lining) changes to prepare for potential implantation of an embryo to establish a pregnancy. If implantation does not occur within approximately two weeks, the corpus luteum will die, causing sharp drops in levels of both progesterone and estrogen. These hormone drops cause the uterus to shed its lining in a process termed menstruation.
Phases of the menstrual cycle Menstruation
Menstruation is also called menstrual bleeding, menses, a period or catamenia. The flow of menses normally serves as a sign that a woman has not become pregnant. (However, this cannot be taken as certainty, as sometimes there is some flow of blood in early pregnancy.) During the reproductive years, failure to menstruate may provide the first indication to a woman that she may have become pregnant.
Eumenorrhea denotes normal, regular menstruation that lasts for a few days (usually 3 to 5 days, but anywhere from 2 to 7 days is considered normal).The average blood loss during menstruation is 35 millilitres with 10–80 ml considered normal; many women also notice shedding of the endometrium lining that appears as tissue mixed with the blood. An enzyme called plasmin — contained in the endometrium — tends to inhibit the blood from clotting. Because of this blood loss, women have higher dietary requirements for iron than do males to prevent iron deficiency. Many women experience uterine cramps during this time (severe cramps or other symptoms are called dysmenorrhea), as well as other premenstrual syndrome symptoms. A vast industry of sanitary products is marketed to women for use during their menstruation.
Follicular phase
Through the influence of a rise in follicle stimulating hormone (FSH), five to seven tertiary-stage ovarian follicles are recruited for entry into the next menstrual cycle. These follicles, that have been growing for the better part of a year in a process known as folliculogenesis, compete with each other for dominance. Under the influence of several hormones, all but one of these follicles will undergo atresia, while one (or occasionally two) dominant follicles will continue to maturity. As they mature, the follicles secrete increasing amounts of estradiol, an estrogen.
The estrogens that follicles secrete initiate the formation of a new layer of endometrium in the uterus, histologically identified as the proliferative endometrium. The estrogen also stimulates crypts in the cervix to produce fertile cervical mucus, which may be noticed by women practicing fertility awareness.
When the egg has matured, it secretes enough estradiol to trigger the acute release of luteinizing hormone (LH). In the average cycle this LH surge starts around cycle day 12 and may last 48 hours. The release of LH matures the egg and weakens the wall of the follicle in the ovary. This process leads to ovulation: the release of the now mature ovum, the largest cell of the body (with a diameter of about 0.5 mm). Which of the two ovaries — left or right — ovulates appears essentially random; no known left/right co-ordination exists. The egg is swept into the fallopian tube by the fimbria - a fringe of tissue at the end of each fallopian tube. If fertilization occurs, it will happen in the fallopian tube.
In some women, ovulation features a characteristic pain called mittelschmerz (German term meaning 'middle pain') which may last a few hours. The sudden change in hormones at the time of ovulation also causes light mid-cycle blood flow from the vagina of some women. An unfertilized egg will eventually disintegrate or dissolve.
Luteal phase
The corpus luteum is the solid body formed in the ovaries after the egg has been released into the fallopian tube which continues to grow and divide for a while. After ovulation, the residual follicle transforms into the corpus luteum under the support of the pituitary hormones. This corpus luteum will produce progesterone in addition to estrogens for approximately the next 2 weeks. Progesterone plays a vital role in converting the proliferative endometrium into a secretory lining receptive for implantation and supportive of the early pregnancy. It raises the body temperature by 0.25 °C to 0.5 °C (0.5 °F to 1.0 °F), thus women who record their basal body temperature on a daily basis will notice that they have entered the luteal phase. If fertilization of an egg has occurred, it will travel as an early blastocyst through the fallopian tube to the uterine cavity and implant itself 6 to 12 days after ovulation. Shortly after implantation, the growing embryo will signal its existence to the maternal system. One very early signal consists of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), a hormone that pregnancy tests can measure. This signal has an important role in maintaining the corpus luteum and enabling it to continue to produce progesterone. In the absence of a pregnancy and without hCG, the corpus luteum demises and inhibin and progesterone levels fall. This will set the stage for the next cycle. Progesterone withdrawal leads to menstrual shedding (progesterone withdrawal bleeding), and falling inhibin levels allow FSH levels to rise to raise a new crop of follicles.
Fertile window
The length of the follicular phase — and consequently the length of the menstrual cycle — may vary widely. The luteal phase, however, almost always takes the same number of days for each woman: Some women have a luteal phase of 10 days, others 16 days, while the average is 14 days. Normal sperm life inside a woman ranges from 1-5 days, though a pregnancy resulting from sperm life of 8 days has been documented. The most fertile period (the time with the highest likelihood of pregnancy resulting from sexual intercourse) covers the time from some 5 days before ovulation until 1–2 days after ovulation. In an average 28 day cycle with a 14-day luteal phase, this corresponds to the second and the beginning of the third week of the cycle. Fertility awareness methods of birth control attempt to determine the precise time of ovulation in order to find the relatively fertile and the relatively infertile days in the cycle.
People who have heard about the menstrual cycle and ovulation often mistakenly assume, for contraceptive purposes, that menstrual cycles regularly take 28 days, and that ovulation always occurs 14 days after beginning of the menses. This assumption may lead to unintended pregnancies. Note too that not every event of blood flow counts as a menstruation, and this can mislead people in their calculation of the fertile window.
If a woman wants to conceive, the most fertile time occurs between 19 and 10 days prior to the expected menses. Many women use ovulation detection kits that detect the presence of the LH surge in the urine to indicate the most fertile time. Other ovulation detection systems rely on observation of one or more of the three primary fertility signs (basal body temperature, cervical fluid, and cervical position).

Potassium channel

Potassium channels are the most widely distributed type of ion channel and are found in virtually all living organisms. They form potassium-selective pores that span cell membranes. Furthermore potassium channels are found in most cell types and control a wide variety of cell functions.
In excitable cells such as neurons, they shape action potentials and set the resting membrane potential.
By contributing to the regulation of the action potential duration in cardiac muscle, malfunction of potassium channels may cause life-threatening arrhythmias.
They also regulate cellular processes such as the secretion of hormones (e.g., insulin release from beta-cells in the pancreas) so their malfunction can lead to diseases (such as diabetes).

TATA-Binding Protein DNA Complex

TATA binding protein (TBP) is a transcription factor that binds specifically to a DNA sequence called the TATA box. This DNA sequence is found about 25-30 base pairs upstream of the transcription start site in some eukaryotic gene promoters. TBP, along with a variety of TBP-associated factors, make up the TFIID, a general transcription factor that in turn makes up part of the RNA polymerase II preinitiation complex. As one of the few proteins in the preinitation complex that binds DNA in a sequence-specific manner, it helps position RNA polymerase II over the transcription start site of the gene. However, it is estimated that only 10-20% of human promoters have TATA boxes. Therefore, TBP is probably not the only protein involved in positioning RNA polymerase II.

Role as Transcription Factor Subunit
TBP is a subunit of the eukaryotic transcription factor TFIID. TFIID is the first protein to bind to DNA during the formation of the pre-initiation transcription complex of RNA polymerase II (RNA Pol II). Binding of TFIID to the TATA box in the promoter region of the gene initiates the recruitment of other factors required for RNA Pol II to begin transcription. Some of the other recruited transcription factors include TFIIA, TFIIB and TFIIF. Each of these transcription factors are formed from the interaction of many protein subunits, indicating that transcription is a heavily regulated process.
TBP is also a necessary component of RNA polymerase I and RNA polymerase III, and is perhaps the only common subunit required by all three of the RNA polymerases.
DNA-Protein Interactions
When TBP binds to a TATA box within the DNA, it distorts the DNA by inserting amino acid side chains between base pairs, partially unwinding the helix, and doubly kinking it. The distortion is accomplished through a great amount of surface contact between the protein and DNA. TBP binds with the negatively charged phosphates in the DNA backbone through positively charged lysine and arginine amino acid residues. The sharp bend in the DNA is produced through projection of four bulky phenylalanine residues into the minor groove. As the DNA bends, its contact with TBP increases, thus enhancing the DNA-protein interaction.

The strain imposed on the DNA through this interaction initiates melting, or separation, of the strands. Because this region of DNA is rich in adenine and thymine residues, which base pair through only two hydrogen bonds, the DNA strands are more easily separated. Separation of the two strands exposes the bases and allows RNA polymerase II to begin transcription of the gene.
For information on the use of TBP in cells see: RNA polymerase I, RNA polymerase II and RNA polymerase III.
TBP is involved in DNA melting (double strand separation) by bending the DNA by 80° (the AT-rich sequence to which it binds facilitates easy melting). The TBP is an unusual protein in that it binds the minor groove using a β sheet.
Another distinctive feature of TBP is a long string of glutamines in the N-terminus of the protein. This region modulates the DNA binding activity of the C-terminus, and modulation of DNA binding affects the rate of transcription complex formation and initiation of transcription. Mutations that expand the number of CAG repeats encoding this polyglutamine tract, and thus increase the length of the polyglutamine string, are associated with spinocerebellar ataxia 17, a neurodegenerative disorder classified as a polyglutamine disease.

Sinusitis Pathology

Sinusitis, acute or chronic inflammation of the mucosal lining of one or more paranasal sinuses (the cavities in the bones that adjoin the nose). Sinusitis commonly accompanies upper respiratory viral infections and in most cases requires no treatment. Purulent (pus-producing) sinusitis can occur, however, requiring treatment with antibiotics. Chronic cases caused by irritants in the environment or by impaired immune systems may require more extended treatment, including surgery.

Prions Animation

A prion combination of the first two syllables of the words proteinaceous and infectious It is a poorly-understood hypothetical infectious agent that, according to the "protein only" hypothesis, is composed entirely of proteins. Prions are thought to cause a number of diseases in a variety of mammals, including bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE, also known as "mad cow disease") in cattle and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) in humans. All thus-far hypothesized prion diseases affect the structure of the brain or other neural tissue, and all are currently untreatable and thought to be fatal. In general usage, prion can refer to both the theoretical unit of infection or the specific protein (e.g. PrP) that is thought to be the infective agent, whether or not it is in an infective state.
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An osteoclast (from the Greek words for "bone" and "broken") is a type of bone cell that removes bone tissue by removing its mineralized matrix. This process is known as bone resorption. Osteoclasts and osteoblasts are instrumental in controlling the amount of bone tissue: osteoblasts form bone, osteoclasts resorb bone. Osteoclasts are formed by the fusion of cells of the monocyte-macrophage cell line. Osteoclasts are characterized by high expression of tartrate resistant acid phosphatase (TRAP) and cathepsin K.

An osteoclast is a large cell that is characterized by multiple nuclei and a cytoplasm with a homogeneous, "foamy" appearance. This appearance is due to a high concentration of vesicles and vacuoles. At a site of active bone resorption, the osteoclast forms a specialized cell membrane, the "ruffled border", which touches the surface of the bone tissue.

Programmed Cell Death

Programmed cell-death (PCD) is death of a cell in any form, mediated by an intracellular program. In contrast to necrosis, which is a form of cell-death that results from acute tissue injury and provokes an inflammatory response, PCD is carried out in a regulated process which generally confers advantage during an organism's life-cycle. PCD serves fundamental functions during both plant and metazoa (multicellular animals) tissue development.

RAS Pathway

Information entering the brain along the sensory nerve pathway passes to the sensory cortex. However, nerve branches from the pathway first send impulses to the ascending reticular-activating system or RAS, which stimulates activity and attentiveness throughout the entire cortex. The resultant outgoing information leaves the brain from the motor cortex through the motor pathway and then into the spinal cord.

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Signaling Pathway of Ras. Binding of growth factors to receptor tyrosine kinases stimulates the autophosphorylation of specific tyrosines on the receptors. The phosphorylated receptor then binds to an adaptor protein called GRB2 which, in turn, recuits SOS (son of sevenless) to the plasma membrane. SOS is a guanine nucleotide exchange factor which displaces GDP from Ras, subsequently allowing the binding of GTP (Ras is already anchored to the plasma membrane by post-translationally added lipids, shown as a red line). GTP-bound Ras recruits and activates Raf. Raf initates a cascade of protein phosphorylation by first phophorylating MEK. Phosphorylated MEK in turn phosphorylates ERK. Phosphorylated ERK moves from the cytoplasm into the nucleus where it subsequently phosphorylates a number of transcription factors, including the specific transcription factor called Elk-1. Phosphorylated transcription factors turn on transcription (gene expression) of specific sets of target genes. The activity of Ras is limited by the hydrolysis of GTP back to GDP by GTPase activating proteins (GAP). Other abbreviations are: MEK = MAPK/ERK kinase, ERK = extracellular receptor-stimulated kinase, MAPK = mitogen-activated protein kinase. Kinases are enzymes that add phosphates to molecules using ATP. Mitogens are factors (such as growth factors) that stimulate cell division.

Evolutionary significance of Human Chromosome 2

All apes apart from man have 24 pairs of chromosomes. There is therefore a hypothesis that the common ancestor of all great apes had 24 pairs of chromosomes and that the fusion of two of the ancestor's chromosomes created chromosome 2 in humans. The evidence for this hypothesis is very strong.

The Evidence

Evidence for fusing of two ancestral chromosomes to create human chromosome 2 and where there has been no fusion in other Great Apes is:

1) The analogous chromosomes (2p and 2q) in the non-human great apes can be shown, when laid end to end, to create an identical banding structure to the human chromosome 2.

2) The remains of the sequence that the chromosome has on its ends (the telomere) is found in the middle of human chromosome 2 where the ancestral chromosomes fused.

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3) the detail of this region (pre-telomeric sequence, telomeric sequence, reversed telomeric sequence, pre-telomeric sequence) is exactly what we would expect from a fusion.
4) this telomeric region is exactly where one would expect to find it if a fusion had occurred in the middle of human chromosome 2.

5) the centromere of human chromosome 2 lines up with the chimp chromosome 2p chromosomal centromere.

6) At the place where we would expect it on the human chromosome we find the remnants of the chimp 2q centromere .

Not only is this strong evidence for a fusion event, but it is also strong evidence for common ancestry; in fact, it is hard to explain by any other mechanism.

Centromere evidence
Let us re-iterate what we find on human chromosome 2. Its centromere is at the same place as the chimpanzee chromosome 2p as determined by sequence similarity. Even more telling is the fact that on the 2q arm of the human chromosome 2 is the unmistakable remains of the original chromosome centromere of the common ancestor of human and chimp 2q chromosome, at the same position as the chimp 2q centromere (this structure in humans no longer acts as a centromere for chromosome 2.


LASIK Eye Surgery animation

LASIK (laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis) is a type of refractive laser eye surgery performed by ophthalmologists for correcting myopia, hyperopia, and astigmatism.[1] The procedure is generally preferred to photorefractive keratectomy, PRK, (also called ASA, Advanced Surface Ablation) because it requires less time for the patient's recovery, and the patient feels less pain, overall; however, there are instances where PRK/ASA is medically indicated as a better alternative to LASIK.
The LASIK technique was made possible by the Colombian-based Spanish ophthalmologist Jose Barraquer, who, around 1950 in his clinic in Bogotá, Colombia, developed the first microkeratome, used to cut thin flaps in the cornea and alter its shape, in a procedure called keratomileusis. Stephan Schaller assisted. Barraquer also provided the knowledge about how much of the cornea had to be left unaltered to provide stable long-term results.

Later technical and procedural developments included the RK (radial keratotomy), started in the '70s in Russia by Svyatoslav Fyodorov , and the development of PRK (photorefractive keratectomy) in the '80s in Germany by Theo Seiler. RK is a procedure where radial corneal cuts are made typically using a micrometer diamond knife, and has nothing to do with LASIK

In 1968, at the Northrup Corporation Research and Technology Center of the University of California, Mani Lal Bhaumik and a group of other scientists, while working on the development of a carbon-dioxide laser, developed the Excimer laser, where molecules that do not normally exist come into being when xenon, argon or krypton gases are excited. This formed the cornerstone for LASIK eye surgery. Dr. Bhaumik announced his discovery in May of 1973 at a meeting of the Denver Optical Society of America in Denver, Colorado. He would later patent it.
The introduction of Laser in this refractive procedure started with the developments in Laser technology by Rangaswamy Srinivasan. In 1980, Srinivasan, working at IBM Research Lab, discovered that an ultraviolet excimer laser could etch living tissue in a precise manner with no thermal damage to the surrounding area. He named the phenomenon Ablative Photodecomposition (APD). Dr. Stephen Trokel published a paper in the American Journal of Ophthalmology in 1983, outlining the potential of using the excimer laser in refractive surgeries.

The first patent for LASIK was granted by the US Patent Office to Gholam A. Peyman, MD on June 20, 1989, US Patent #4,840,175, "METHOD FOR MODIFYING CORNEAL CURVATURE", describing the surgical procedure in which a flap is cut in the cornea and pulled back to expose the corneal bed. This exposed surface is then ablated to the desired shape with an excimer laser, following which the flap is replaced.

Using these advances in laser technology and the technical and theoretical developments in refractive surgery made since the 50's, LASIK surgery was developed in 1990 by Lucio Buratto (Italy) and Ioannis Pallikaris (Greece) as a melding of two prior techniques, keratomileusis and photorefractive keratectomy. It quickly became popular because of its greater precision and lower frequency of complications in comparison with these former two techniques.

Today, faster lasers, larger spot areas, bladeless flap incision, and wavefront-optimized and -guided techniques have significantly improved the reliability of the procedure compared to that of 1991. Nonetheless, the fundamental limitations of excimer lasers and undesirable destruction of the eye's nerves have spawned research into many alternatives to "plain" LASIK, including all-femtosecond correction (Femtosecond Lenticule EXtraction, FLIVC), LASEK, Epi-LASIK, sub-Bowman’s Keratomileusis aka thin-flap LASIK, wavefront-guided PRK, and modern intraocular lenses.

There are several necessary preparations in the preoperative period. The operation itself is made by creating a thin flap on the eye, folding it to enable remodeling of the tissue underneath with laser. The flap is repositioned and the eye is left to heal in the postoperative period.


Patients wearing soft contact lenses are usually instructed to stop wearing them approximately 5 to 7 days before surgery. One industry body recommends that patients wearing hard contact lenses should stop wearing them for a minimum of six weeks plus another six weeks for every three years the hard contacts have been worn. Before the surgery, the patient's corneas are examined with a pachymeter to determine their thickness, and with a topographer to measure their surface contour. Using low-power lasers, a topographer creates a topographic map of the cornea. This process also detects astigmatism and other irregularities in the shape of the cornea. Using this information, the surgeon calculates the amount and locations of corneal tissue to be removed during the operation. The patient typically is prescribed an antibiotic to start taking beforehand, to minimize the risk of infection after the procedure.


The operation is performed with the patient awake and mobile; however, the patient is given a mild sedative (such as Valium) and anesthetic eye drops.

LASIK is performed in three steps. The first step is to create a flap of corneal tissue. The second step is remodeling of the cornea underneath the flap with the laser. Finally, the flap is repositioned.

Flap creation

A corneal suction ring is applied to the eye, holding the eye in place. This step in the procedure can sometimes cause small blood vessels to burst, resulting in bleeding or subconjunctival hemorrhage into the white (sclera) of the eye, a harmless side effect that resolves within several weeks. Increased suction typically causes a transient dimming of vision in the treated eye. Once the eye is immobilized, the flap is created. This process is achieved with a mechanical microkeratome using a metal blade, or a femtosecond laser microkeratome (procedure known as IntraLASIK) that creates a series of tiny closely arranged bubbles within the cornea. A hinge is left at one end of this flap. The flap is folded back, revealing the stroma, the middle section of the cornea. The process of lifting and folding back the flap can be uncomfortable.

Laser remodeling

The second step of the procedure is to use an excimer laser (193 nm) to remodel the corneal stroma. The laser vaporizes tissue in a finely controlled manner without damaging adjacent stroma. No burning with heat or actual cutting is required to ablate the tissue. The layers of tissue removed are tens of micrometers thick. Performing the laser ablation in the deeper corneal stroma typically provides for more rapid visual recovery and less pain, than the earlier technique photorefractive keratectomy (PRK).

During the second step, the patient's vision will become very blurry once the flap is lifted. He/she will be able to see only white light surrounding the orange light of the laser. This can be disorienting.

Currently manufactured excimer lasers use an eye tracking system that follows the patient's eye position up to 4,000 times per second, redirecting laser pulses for precise placement within the treatment zone. Typical pulses are around 1 mJ of pulse energy in 10 to 20 nanoseconds.

Reposition of flap

After the laser has reshaped the stromal layer, the LASIK flap is carefully repositioned over the treatment area by the surgeon and checked for the presence of air bubbles, debris, and proper fit on the eye. The flap remains in position by natural adhesion until healing is completed.


Patients are usually given a course of antibiotic and anti-inflammatory eye drops. These are continued in the weeks following surgery. Patients are usually told to sleep much more and are also given a darkened pair of shields to protect their eyes from bright lights and protective goggles to prevent rubbing of the eyes when asleep and to reduce dry eyes. They also have to moisturize the eyes with preservative free tears and follow directions for prescription drops. Patients should be adequately informed by their surgeons of the importance of proper post-operative care to minimize the risk of post-surgical complications.

Understanding Cholesterol

Cholesterol is a lipid found in the cell membranes of all animal tissues, and it is transported in the blood plasma of all animals. Cholesterol is also a sterol (a combination steroid and alcohol). Because cholesterol is synthesized by all eukaryotes, trace amounts of cholesterol are also found in membranes of plants and fungi.
The name originates from the Greek chole- (bile) and stereos (solid), and the chemical suffix -ol for an alcohol, as researchers first identified cholesterol in solid form in gallstones by François Poulletier de la Salle in 1769. However, it is only in 1815 that chemist Eugène Chevreul named the compound "cholesterine".

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Most of the cholesterol in the body is synthesized by the body and some has dietary origin. Cholesterol is more abundant in tissues which either synthesize more or have more abundant densely-packed membranes, for example, the liver, spinal cord and brain. It plays a central role in many biochemical processes, such as the composition of cell membranes and the synthesis of steroid hormones.

Since cholesterol is insoluble in blood, it is transported in the circulatory system within lipoproteins, complex spherical particles which have an exterior composed mainly of water-soluble proteins; fats and cholesterol are carried internally. There is a large range of lipoproteins within blood, generally called, from larger to smaller size: chylomicrons, very low density lipoprotein (VLDL), intermediate density lipoprotein (IDL), low density lipoprotein (LDL) and high density lipoprotein (HDL). The cholesterol within all the various lipoproteins is identical.

According to the lipid hypothesis, abnormally high cholesterol levels (hypercholesterolemia), or, more correctly, higher concentrations of LDL and lower concentrations of functional HDL are strongly associated with cardiovascular disease because these promote atheroma development in arteries (atherosclerosis). This disease process leads to myocardial infarction (heart attack), stroke and peripheral vascular disease. Since higher blood LDL, especially higher LDL particle concentrations and smaller LDL particle size, contribute to this process more than the cholesterol content of the LDL particles , LDL particles are often termed "bad cholesterol" because they have been linked to atheroma formation. On the other hand, high concentrations of functional HDL, which can remove cholesterol from cells and atheroma, offer protection. These balances are mostly genetically determined but can be changed by body build, medications, food choices and other factors.

Carbohydrates Chemical Structure and Reactivity

Carbohydrates (from 'hydrates of carbon') or saccharides the most abundant of the four major classes of biomolecules, which also include proteins, lipids and nucleic acids. They fill numerous roles in living things, such as the storage and transport of energy (starch, glycogen) and structural components (cellulose in plants, chitin in animals). Additionally, carbohydrates and their derivatives play major roles in the working process of the immune system, fertilization, pathogenesis, blood clotting, and development.

Part 1

Part 2
Chemically, carbohydrates are simple organic compounds that are aldehydes or ketones with many hydroxyl groups added, usually one on each carbon atom that is not part of the aldehyde or ketone functional group. The basic carbohydrate units are called monosaccharides, such as glucose, galactose, and fructose. The general stoichiometric formula of an unmodified monosaccharide is (C·H2O)n, where n is any number of three or greater; however, the use of this word does not follow this exact definition and many molecules with formulae that differ slightly from this are still called carbohydrates, and others that possess formulae agreeing with this general rule are not called carbohydrates (eg formaldehyde).

Monosaccharides can be linked together into polysaccharides in almost limitless ways. Many carbohydrates contain one or more modified monosaccharide units that have had one or more groups replaced or removed. For example, deoxyribose, a component of DNA, is a modified version of ribose; chitin is composed of repeating units of N-acetylglucosamine, a nitrogen-containing form of glucose. The names of carbohydrates often end in the suffix -ose.