A medical diagnostic method and instrumentation system for analyzing noncovalently bonded agglomerated biological particles is described. The method and system comprises: a method of preparation for the biological particles; an electrospray generator; an alpha particle radiation source; a differential mobility analyzer; a particle counter; and data acquisition and analysis means. The medical device is useful for the assessment of human diseases, such as cardiac disease risk and hyperlipidemia, by rapid quantitative analysis of lipoprotein fraction densities. Initially, purification procedures are described to reduce an initial blood sample to an analytical input to the instrument. The measured sizes from the analytical sample are correlated with densities, resulting in a spectrum of lipoprotein densities. The lipoprotein density distribution can then be used to characterize cardiac and other lipid-related health risks.
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This invention was made with U.S. Government support under Contract Number DE-AC03-765F00098 between the U.S. Department of Energy and The Regents of the University of California for the management and operation of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. The U.S. Government has certain rights in this invention.