Introduction: Hypercholesterolaemia is a significant risk factor for cardiovascular disease (CVD), a major cause of morbidity and mortality. Up to now, the appropriate management has been aggressive hypolipidaemic therapy, particularly with statins, aiming at certain low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) levels for each patient population. This strategy has reduced CVD-related morbidity and mortality. However, many cardiovascular events still occur, probably as a consequence of lipid disorders other than high LDL-C concentration or other risk factors. Because statins do not eliminate the residual CVD risk, there seems to be place for novel lipid modifying drugs with different mechanisms of action. Areas covered: This review is an update since 2010 regarding lipid-modifying drugs in development and their potent role in clinical practice. It focuses on cholesterol ester transfer protein inhibitors, mainly anacetrapib and evacetrapib, microsomal triglyceride transfer protein inhibitors, antisense oligonucleotides, pre-protein convertase subtilisin kexin-9 inhibitors and high-density lipoprotein mimetics. Expert opinion: Several novel lipid-modifying drugs may be beneficial for certain patient populations. However, ongoing and future studies with clinical outcomes will clarify their actual role in clinical practice.
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