Huntsville doctor leading cholesterol drug study - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Huntsville doctor leading cholesterol drug study

A Huntsville doctor is participating in clinical trials for a new medicine to help those whose cholesterol is not controlled despite diet and exercise. (Source: WAFF) A Huntsville doctor is participating in clinical trials for a new medicine to help those whose cholesterol is not controlled despite diet and exercise. (Source: WAFF)
(WAFF) -

Each year, about 1 in 3 deaths are caused by heart disease and stroke in this country. It is estimated that about 200,000 of these deaths could have been prevented through changes in health habits including managing risk factors such as high cholesterol. 

A Huntsville doctor is participating in clinical trials for a new medicine to help those whose cholesterol is not controlled despite diet and exercise.

This study of low density lipoprotein cholesterol, also known as LDL or "bad" cholesterol, is a challenge for researchers.

In Huntsville and Decatur, it's estimated more than 54,000 residents do not have this type cholesterol under control, which can lead to cardiovascular disease. Internal medicine Dr. Saadt Ansari is working to change that.  

"Cardiovascular disease is the number one leading cause of death, globally," said Dr. Ansari.

Dr. Ansari and his team are leading the way with clinical research.    

"It's a new investigational product from Pfizer. And the clinical study is called SPIRE clinical trials," Ansari said. "These are multiple clinical trials that are looking to see if it can lower the bad cholesterol, which is LDL. And (it will) also look and see if that improves the cardiovascular outcome."

Betty Johnson of Valhermoso Springs is hoping to find a place in the study.  She has a stent and a history of high cholesterol.  Currently she is on an expensive medicine, with little results.   

"I talked to the people about getting in the study to find something maybe that would control it and to reduce the costs to me," said Johnson. "I think that it could lower the cholesterol, it would save a lot of people from heart attacks, strokes and early deaths."

The study is ongoing, now, through Dr. Ansari's office.  And it's expect to take 4 to 5 years before we see anything clear the F.D.A.  

If you are interested in being a participant, call the study number at 256-489-2879 or log in at www.spirestudies.com.

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