Objectives: To determine the long-term effects of unfiltered coffee consumption on the activity levels of cholesteryl ester transfer protein (CETP), phospholipid transfer protein (PLTP) and lecithin:cholesterol acyltransferase (LCAT) and to assess a possible role of CETP activity levels in the rise in serum LDL cholesterol.
Subjects and design: Forty-six healthy normolipidaemic subjects consumed 0.9 L of either French-press or filtered coffee for 24 weeks. Fasting blood samples were obtained after 0, 2, 12 and 24 weeks of intervention and after and 12 weeks of follow-up.
Main outcome measures: Serum activity levels of CETP, PLTP and LCAT.
Results: Relative to baseline, French-press coffee significantly increased average CETP activity by 12% after 2 weeks, by 18% after 12 weeks, and by 9% after 24 weeks. PLTP activity was significantly increased by 10% after 12 and 24 weeks. LCAT activity was significantly decreased by 6% after 12 weeks and by 7% after 24 weeks. The increase in CETP clearly preceded the increase in LDL cholesterol, but not the increase in total triglycerides. However, consumption of French-press coffee caused a persistent rise in CETP activity, whereas the rise in serum triglycerides was transient.
Conclusions: Consumption of cafestol and kahweol cause a long-term increase in CETP as well as PLTP activity; the increase in CETP activity may contribute to the rise in LDL cholesterol.