Cholesterol-lowering drug molecule. Computer model of a molecule of the cholesterol-lowering drug Simvastatin. Atoms are represented as spheres and are colour-coded: carbon (green), hydrogen (white) and oxygen (pink). This drug reduces the levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol ('bad' cholesterol) in the bloodstream. High levels of LDL cholesterol (hypercholesterolaemia) are a major cause of heart disease and strokes. Simvastatin works by blocking the effects of the enzyme HMG-CoA reductase, which normally causes the body to produce LDL cholesterol from foods.
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