iQ&A Interactive Medical Intelligence Zone for Hypercholesterolemia and ASOs
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The Interactive Medical Intelligence Zone is a needs assessment-driven continuing medical education (CME) activity that utilizes national and international experts to provide evidence-based, guideline-consistent, and practice behavior-changing information focused on critical and challenging topics in clinical medicine.
To ensure that the educational content of iQ&A programs will address practice gaps in clinical medicine, improve patient outcomes, and positively guide clinical practice strategies, international experts, usually in a roundtable format, will respond to questions submitted and/or generated by practitioners at CME mega-symposia, national congress, association meetings, or as part of on-line, enduring CME programs.
Questions reflecting the clinical needs of practitioners are then answered, analyzed, and discussed by international experts, who provide evidence-based and clinically relevant guidance that is independently of commercial sources or the program sponsor.
The iQ&A platform stresses:
  • Needs assessment-driven CME content
  • Evidence-based analysis
  • Expert-based guidance and consultation
  • Compliance adherence
  • Independence of content generation
  • Landmark trials
  • Association-generated practice management guidelines
  • Quality of care improvement
  • Practice gap improvement
Program Medium

Internet-based program

Method of Physician Participation Utilized in Learning Process

There are no fees for participating and receiving CME credit for this activity. During the period April 30, 2012 through April 30, 2014, participants must 1) read the learning objectives and faculty disclosures; 2) study the educational activity, and are expected to view all 74 segments, totaling 2 hours and 36 minutes, to successfully complete the activity and earn CME credit; 3) register and complete the evaluation form and post-test; 4) score 100% on the post-test; and 5) print out CME certificate.

Estimated Time to Complete Educational Activity

2.5 hours. Physicians must study the enduring activity, and are expected to view every segment to successfully complete the activity and earn CME credit.

Course Overview

In this web-based program, physicians will learn how recent advances in basic and clinical research have helped to advance the understanding of treatment advances in the management of familial hypercholesterolemia.

Release Date

April 30, 2012

Expiration Date

April 30, 2014

Intended Audience

This complimentary CME educational activity is designed for all healthcare providers (HCPs) involved in developing, delivering, consulting, and monitoring care for patients with familial hypercholesterolemia.

This constituency of HCPs shall include the following audience:

  • Cardiologists
  • Atherosclerosis experts
  • Lipidologists
  • Thrombosis medicine specialists
  • Preventive medicine specialists
  • Pediatric cardiovascular specialists
  • Endocrine and cardiometabolic disease specialists
  • Cardiology department program directors
  • Clinical geneticists
  • Clinical cardiovascular pharmacists
  • Related specialists


Participation in this iQ&A interactive Medical Intelligence Zone for Familial Hypercholeterolemia is complimentary, and clinicians are invited to view this CME-certified program and/or share this invitation with other colleagues, departmental staff members, and healthcare professionals.

Grantor Support

Supported by an educational grant from Genzyme.

Accreditation Statement

This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the Essential Areas and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint sponsorship of the University of Massachusetts Medical School Office of Continuing Medical Education (UMMS-OCME) and CMEducation Resources, LLC. The UMMS-OCME is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

Credit Designation Statement

The University of Massachusetts Medical School designates this enduring material for a maximum of 2.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits(s)™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Policy on Faculty & Provider Disclosure

It is the policy of the University of Massachusetts Medical School to ensure fair balance, independence, objectivity and scientific rigor in all activities. All faculty participating in CME activities sponsored by the University of Massachusetts Medical School are required to present evidence-based data, identify and reference off-label product use and disclose all relevant financial relationships with those supporting the activity or others whose products or services are discussed. Faculty disclosure will be provided in the activity materials.

Policy on Faculty & Provider Disclosure

It is the policy of the University of Massachusetts Medical School to ensure fair balance, independence, objectivity and scientific rigor in all activities. All faculty participating in CME activities sponsored by the University of Massachusetts Medical School are required to present evidence-based data, identify and reference off-label product use and disclose all relevant financial relationships with those supporting the activity or others whose products or services are discussed. Faculty disclosure will be provided in the activity materials.

Program Faculty and Disclosure

Christie M. Ballantyne, MD
Director, Center for Cardiovascular Disease Prevention
Methodist DeBakey Heart Center
Chief of the Section of Cardiovascular Research
Baylor College of Medicine
Director of Atherosclerosis Laboratory
Professor of Medicine
Baylor College of Medicine
Houston, TX

Advisor or Consultant: Abbott Laboratories; Amarin Corporation plc; Adnexus; Amylin Pharmaceuticals, Inc.; AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals LP; Bristol-Myers Squibb Company; Esperion Therapeutics, Inc.; Genentech, Inc.; GlaxoSmithKline; Idera Pharmaceuticals Inc.; Kowa Company Ltd.; Merck & Co., Inc.; Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation; Omthera Pharmaceuticals, Inc.; Resverlogix Corp; Roche; sanofi-aventis; Synthelabo; Takeda Pharmaceuticals North America, Inc.
Speaker or Speakers Bureau: Abbott Laboratories; GlaxoSmithKline; Merck & Co., Inc.

William Boden, MD
Chief of Medicine
Albany (NY) Stratton VA Medical Center
Vice Chair, Department of Medicine
Albany Medical Center
Albany, NY

Speaker: Abbott, Gilead, sanofi-aventis

Robin Choudhury, MD
Wellcome Trust Senior Research Fellow
University of Oxford
Consultant Cardiologist
John Radcliffe Hospital
Oxford Acute Vascular Imaging Centre
Oxford, England

Consultant: Roche, sanofi-aventis, AstraZeneca
Speaker: Merck
Research Support: Merck, Novartis

Michael Davidson, MD, FACC, FNLA
Director of Preventive Cardiology
Clinical Professor of Medicine
University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine
Executive Medical Director
Radiant Research
Chicago, IL

Advisory Board/Consultant: Amgen, Merck, Roche, Sanofi-aventis
Stockholder: Omthera Pharmaceuticals

James De Lemos, MD
Associate Professor of Medicine
Sweetheart Ball-Kern Wildenthal, MD, PhD Distinguished Chair in Cardiology
University of Texas, Southwestern Medical School
Director, Coronary Care Unit
Parkland Memorial Hospital
Director, Cardiology Fellowship
University of Texas Southwestern Medical School
Dallas, Texas

Speaker: Bristol-Myers Squibb, sanofi-aventis
Consultant: AstraZeneca

Mary McGowan, MD
Medical Director
Cholesterol Treatment Center
Concord Hospital Cholesterol Treatment Center
Concord, NH
Assistant Professor of Medicine
University of Massachusetts Medical Center

Consultant: Genzyme, Amgen, sanofi-aventis
Speaker: GlaxoSmithKline, Merck

Prof. Dr. Heribert Schunkert, MD
Professor of Internal Medicine and Cardiology
Director of Medizinische Klinik II
Universit├Ątsklinikum Schleswig-Holstein
Campus L├╝beck, Germany

Nothing to disclose

Professor Erik Stroes, MD
Chair of the Department of Vascular Medicine
Academic Medical Center in Amsterdam
Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Nothing to disclose

Allen J. Taylor, MD, FACC, FAHA
Director, Advanced Imaging
Washington Hospital Center
Professor of Medicine
Washington, DC

Speaker: Abbott Laboratories

Sotirios Tsimikas, MD, FACC, FAHA, FSCAI
Professor of Medicine
Director of Vascular Medicine
University of Calfornia, San Diego School of Medicine
San Diego, CA

Consultant: Isis Pharmaceuticals, Inc.; Genzyme Corporation; sanofi-aventis; Amarin Corporation plc
Speaker: Merck & Co., Inc.
Research Support: Pfizer Inc; Merck & Co., Inc.
Stock, stock options, or bonds: Atherotope

Program Managers and Web Editor Disclosure Program Manager Gideon Bosker, MD has nothing to disclose.

Program Reviewer Denise Leary has nothing to disclose.

Educational Objectives

Upon completion of this activity, participants will be able to:
  • Apply the Simon Broome Register criteria to confirm the diagnosis of heterozygous familial hypercholesterolemia (HeFH);
  • Determine the LDL-C target goals for patients with HeFH, based on a number of criteria and consensus recommendations including risk categories and/or maximally attainable LDLC reductions;
  • Understand the clinical implications of the underlying genetic mutations, including LDLR and APOB mutations, that underpin impaired LDL receptor function or LDL removal in patients with HeFH;
  • Employ currently available, statin-based treatment regimens to achieve LDL-C target goals for HeFH, and be able to act upon the indications and clinical triggers for more aggressive LDLC lowering in high risk patients
  • Understand the molecular mechanisms of action (MOA) and potential clinical implications of novel, antisense oligonucleotides (ASOs) as therapeutic agents that may be used instead of, or in combination with, traditional lipid-lowering agents in CVD and hypercholesterolemic patients; and, especially in patients carrying inherited disorders of lipoprotein metabolism, including FH, FDB, ARH, mutations in the PCSK9 gene, sitosterolemia, cholesterol 7╬▒-hydroxylase deficiency and polygenic hypercholesterolemia;
  • Deploy ASOs in patients with inherited lipoproteins disorders, based on a scientific understanding of their efficacy on LDL-C reduction as compared to traditional statins, their pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamics profiles, metabolism, side effects, drug-drug interactions, usefulness in statin-intolerant patients, and clinical triggers for their deployment as adjunctive therapy in hypercholesterolemia;
  • Apply the results, conclusions, and findings of landmark clinical trials evaluating the safety and efficacy of ASOs for optimizing target goal attainment in patients with FH;
  • Understand the clinical rationale and metabolic implications of targeting specific lipid moieties, such as apolipoprotein B-100 (apoB-100), the major protein moiety of the atherogenic lipoproteins LDL and Lp(a), as the ideal target for antisense therapy;
  • Detail a scientifically rigorous, mechanistically and clinically relevant understanding of ASOs, and the metabolic effects that result when short, single-stranded synthetic analogs of nucleic acids that bind to a target mRNA, preventing its translation and thereby inhibiting protein synthesis, and the potential application of such MOAs to treatment of patients with FH;

Hardware and Software Requirements:

To participate in this program, viewers must have a PC or Macintosh computer that has active, ongoing internet access for the duration of the program, as well as a compatible Flash-viewer. An email address is required for registration, and a printer is required to print out the CME certificate..

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