Troglitazone is a new oral hypoglycemic agent that reduces insulin resistance in non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM). However, this agent increases serum lipoprotein(a) [Lp(a)], which is known as an atherogenic lipoprotein. The relationships between the response of Lp(a) to troglitazone and the apolipoprotein(a) [apo(a)] phenotype were investigated in this study. Nineteen NIDDM patients were treated with troglitazone for 4 weeks. Lp(a) increased significantly from 20.1+/-16.5 mg/dL to 44.1+/-31.9 mg/dL (P<.001) in all study patients. Lp(a) increased from 25.7+/-34.2 mg/dL to 50.1+/-38.7 mg/dL (P = .03) in patients with smaller apo(a) phenotypes (S1S4 to S2S4). Lp(a) also increased from 17.5+/-12.0 mg/dL to 41.3+/-29.6 mg/dL (P<.01) in patients with larger apo(a) phenotypes (S3 to S4). Therefore, the increase of Lp(a) by troglitazone may be independent of the apo(a) phenotype.