The study was performed to investigate the influence of lipoproteins (LP) on the thromboxane (TX) A2 formation capacity of platelets in clotting whole blood in vitro. The different lipoprotein fractions VLDL, LDL, HDL2 and HDL3 were isolated from blood of normo- or dyslipidemic volunteers by ultracentrifugation. These lipoproteins were incubated in blood with different levels of serum total cholesterol (TC) taken from normolipidemics (TC < 200 mg/dl), moderate hypercholesterolemics (TC: 200-250 mg/dl) or subjects with high cholesterol level (TC > 250 mg/dl), respectively. The amount of serum TXA2 formed within 60 min at 37 degrees C was measured by enzyme immunoassay. The results obtained show that the efficacy of separate LP fractions to influence the TXA2 production depends not only on the type of LP fraction but also on the source of plasma used for isolation of LP and on the cholesterol level in the blood for incubation: LDL taken from normolipidemics or moderate hyperlipidemics inhibited the TXA2 formation in blood from normolipidemics (P < 0.02, respectively), but enhanced it in blood from persons with moderate hypercholesterolemia (P < 0.05). LDL from hyperlipidemics enhanced TXA2 production in blood from hyperlipidemics (P < 0.05). The HDL2 fractions inhibited the TXA2 formation in blood from normo- and hypercholesterolemics (P < 0.02, resp.), but there was no effect of HDL2 in clotting blood from persons with moderate hypercholesterolemia. All HDL3 fractions tested inhibited the TXA2 formation in all types of blood used for clotting (P < 0.02, resp.), probably due to their great cholesterol accepting capacity.