About one-third of the total fats in blood serum is composed of phospholipids, a fat containing phosphorus. A big proportion of these phospholipids is lecithin, which contains choline phosphate plus glycerol combined together on one part of the molecule.
There’s an enzyme called lecithin-cholesterol acyltransferase (LCAT) that is responsible for transesterifying free cholesterol with fats derived from lecithin. The LCAT is important for lipoprotein particle remodeling; for example, converting HDL, LDL, and VLDL to other lipoprotein particles.
A deficiency of LCAT is a genetic disorder that affects the uptake of cholesterol and its elimination because the remodeling of lipoprotein particles. The amount of lecithin in the serum of the blood increases several times when there’s an LCAT deficiency. There are symptoms that someone with an LCAT deficiency experiences, such as anemia, protein in the urine and a cloudy or white colored cornea (corneal opacity). Often the person also develops hardening of the arteries, too.
The Phospholipid test measures lecithin, sphingomyelin, and phospholipids made of lecithin.
No health issues are mentioned in medical texts from phospholipids that are too low.
Elevated levels of Phospholipids in the stool may indicate inadequate absorption, reduced bile salt resorption or increased mucosal cell turnover.
High Phospholipid levels can potentially be the result of:
- LCAT deficiency
- Tangier disease
- fish eye disease
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