Lipoprotein(a) [Lp(a)] is a distinct lipoprotein of the low density lipoprotein (LDL) class. Research has shown that elevated Lp(a) is an independent risk factor for coronary heart disease (CHD), The purpose of this cross-sectional study was to determine whether fitness was associated with Lp(a) concentrations. Cardiorespiratory (CR) fitness, assessed by maximal treadmill time, percent body fat (hydrodensitometry), body fat distribution (waist/hip ratio), lipoprotein profile and LDL particle size (2–16% gel electrophoresis) were determined in healthy Caucasian men (N = 100) and women (N = 50). As expected, the frequency distribution of Lp(a) was highly skewed with a mean level of 16.9 ± 19.1 ·−1 (range 0.10–90 ·−1) for men and women combined. Lp(a) was only significantly (P < 0.05) correlated with cholesterol (r = 0.29) in women and LDL-C (t = 0.22) in men. However, after correcting LDL-C for Lp(a) content, the correlation was not significant (r = 0.06). A MANCOVA, controlling for age, across highest and lowest CR fitness quartiles suggest a typical positive influence of improved CR fitness on lipoproteins, body composition, and fat distribution; however, Lp(a) levels were not affected. These data indicate that there is no direct association between plasma Lp(a) and body composition, fat distribution, or CR fitness in healthy men and women.
©1994The American College of Sports Medicine