Isolation of low density lipoprotein from atherosclerotic vascular tissue of Watanabe heritable hyperlipidemic rabbits

A. Daugherty, B. S. Zweifel, B. E. Sobel, G. Schonfeld

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121 Scopus citations


Atherogenic properties of low density lipoproteins (LDL) in vivo may reflect modification of lipoproteins associated with endothelial translocation and exposure to extracellular matrix and interstitial fluid. To examine whether modifications of LDL occur in vivo, lipoproteins were isolated from plasma and vascular tissue of Watanabe heritable hyperlipidemic (WHHL) rabbits. LDL was extracted from vascular tissue (LDL-V) by homogenization in the presence of a sodium carbonate buffer. Control experiments demonstrated that modifications did not occur under the preparative conditions used to release LDL from tissue. LDL-V contained less esterified cholesterol, but more cholesterol esters, than did LDL from plasma (LDL-P). The diameters of both LDL-V and LDL-P followed gaussian distributions, but LDL-V particles were smaller (20.3±0.1 and 26.3±0.1 nm). Mild lipid peroxidation was evident in LDL-V. The sphingomyelin content was increased in LDL-V, with less phosphatidylcholine than in LDL-P. Sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE) indicated that apolipoprotein B was depleted in LDL-V, but Western blot analyses identified lower molecular weight proteins antigenically related to apolipoprotein B. LDL-V markedly stimulated cholesterol esterification in mouse peritoneal macrophages and also in rabbit alveolar macrophages, a cell type that did not respond to acetylated LDL. LDL-V was not recognized by cultured rabbit skin fibroblasts. Thus, LDL isolated from atherosclerotic vascular tissue in vivo was modified in a fashion that could confer atherogenic properties reflected by augmentation of cholesterol esterification in macrophages in vitro.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)768-777
Number of pages10
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1988

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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