b'38New Techniqueto StudyHeart Disease This approach is used to understand the cellular components. . . andto identify new drugsto fight cardiovascular disease.H eart disease and stroke are the leadingstudy using traditional techniques. Farber labs James cause of death worldwide. Steve FarbersThierer, a Johns Hopkins graduate student at the lab, with collaborators, has developed atime of the study, developed the LipoGlo system in new way to study the protein Apolipoprotein-Bcollaboration with the Mayo Clinics Stephen Ekker; (ApoB) that shuttles lipids such as cholesterol andthey used cutting-edge genome engineering to tag triglycerides (fat) around the circulatory system.zebrafish ApoB with a glowing enzyme similar to These protein/lipid complexes, called lipoproteins,the one that lights up fireflies. This allows them to are the bad cholesterols that clog arteries andmonitor the movement of ApoB lipid complexes in contribute to arterial disease. The new techniquelarval zebrafish, which are entirely transparent. Their measures the number and size of lipoproteinapproach is so sensitive it can be used to measure particles, instead of the traditional cholesterol levelslipoproteins in less than a droplet of zebrafish that can underestimate the risks. This approach isblood, allowing researchers to perform tests usually used to understand the cellular components neededperformed in humans in tiny zebrafish larvae. to build these particles and to identify new drugs to fight cardiovascular disease.Because the larvae are entirely clear, researchers can localize these lipoproteins in an intact animal, The ApoBs fat-and-cholesterol shuttling apparatuswhich has not been done before. These studies can clog blood vessels, forming dangerous plaquerevealed unexpected associations between that can cause a heart attack. But ApoB is one oflipoproteins and different structures and tissues that the largest protein complexes, making it difficult tocannot be detected using traditional approaches.'