DefinitionApolipoprotein CII (apoCII) is a protein found in large fat particles absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract. It is also found in very low density lipoprotein (VLDL), which is made up of mostly triglycerides.This article discusses the test used to check for apoCII in a sample of your blood.
Alternative NamesApoCII; Apoprotein CII; ApoC2
How the test is performedA blood sample is needed. For information on how this is done, see: Venipuncture
How to prepare for the testYou may be told not to eat or drink anything for 4 - 6 hours before the test.
How the test will feelWhen the needle is inserted to draw blood, you may feel moderate pain, or only a prick or stinging sensation. Afterward, there may be some throbbing.
Why the test is performedApoCII measurements can help to determine the specific type or cause of high blood lipids (hyperlipidemia).
Normal ValuesThe normal range is 3 - 5 mg/dL. However, apo CII is usually reported as present or absent.Note: Normal value ranges may vary slightly among different laboratories. Talk to your doctor about the meaning of your specific test results.
What abnormal results meanHigh levels of apoCII may be due to:Angina pectorisFamilial lipoprotein lipase deficiencyHeart attackLow apoCII levels are seen in persons with a rare condition called familial apoprotein CII deficiency. This causes chylomicronemia syndrome.
What the risks areVeins and arteries vary in size from one patient to another and from one side of the body to the other. Obtaining a blood sample from some people may be more difficult than from others.Other risks associated with having blood drawn are slight but may include:Excessive bleedingFainting or feeling light-headedHematoma (blood accumulating under the skin)Infection (a slight risk any time the skin is broken)
Special considerationsApolipoprotein measurements may provide more detail about your risk for heart disease, but the added value of this test beyond a lipid panel is unknown.
ReferencesGenest J, Libby P. Lipoprotein disorders and cardiovascular disease. In: Bonow RO, Mann DL, Zipes DP, Libby P, eds. Braunwald's Heart Disease: A Textbook of Cardiovascular Medicine. 9th ed. Philadelphia, PA:Saunders Elsevier; 2011:chap 47.Semenkovich, CF. Disorders of lipid metabolism. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Cecil Medicine. 24th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Saunders Elsevier; 2011:chap 213.