Lovastatin: A New Cholesterol‐Lowering Agent

Julie J. Krukemyer, Robert L. Talbert

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


Lovastatin is a potent new drug for lowering serum cholesterol through inhibition of 3‐hydroxy‐3‐methylglutaryl—coenzyme A reductase, the rate‐limiting enzyme for cholesterol biosynthesis. Metabolic studies with lovastatin in healthy volunteers and patients with hypercholesterolemia suggest reduced synthesis of low‐density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL‐C) as well as enhanced catabolism LDL‐C mediated through LDL receptors as the principal mechanisms for lipid‐lowering effects. Total cholesterol and LDL‐C are reduced by 30% or more on average when added to baseline therapy, with the effects being more pronounced in nonfamilial than in familial hypercholesterolemia. Optimal dosing appears to be 20 mg given twice a day. The most common adverse effects are gastrointestinal, while the most serious are elevated transaminase levels and the potential for lens opacities. Lovastatin is the first of a new class of lipid‐lowering agents, and is effective when added to diet therapy or in combination with other drugs. 1987 Pharmacotherapy Publications Inc.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)198-209
Number of pages12
JournalPharmacotherapy: The Journal of Human Pharmacology and Drug Therapy
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1987

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology (medical)


Dive into the research topics of 'Lovastatin: A New Cholesterol‐Lowering Agent'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this