Atheroma macrophages internalize large quantities of lipoprotein-derived lipids. While most emphasis has been placed on cholesterol, lipoprotein-derived fatty acids may also play important roles in lesional macrophage biology. Little is known, however, about the trafficking or metabolism of these fatty acids. In this study, we first show that the cholesterol-fatty acyl esterification reaction, catalyzed by acyl-CoA:cholesterol acyltransferase (ACAT), competes for the incorporation of lipoprotein-derived fatty acids into cellular phospholipids. Furthermore, conditions that inhibit trafficking of cholesterol from late endosomes/lysosomes to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER), such as the amphipathic amine U18666A and the Npc1+/- mutation, also inhibit incorporation of lipoprotein-derived fatty acids into phospholipids. The biological relevance of these findings was investigated by studying the suppression of agonist-induced prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) and leukotriene C4/D4/E4 production during lipoprotein uptake by macrophages, which has been postulated to involve enrichment of cellular phospholipids with non-arachidonic fatty acids (NAAFAs). We found that eicosanoid suppression was markedly enhanced when ACAT was inhibited and prevented when late endosomal/lysosomal lipid trafficking was blocked. Moreover, PGE2 suppression depended entirely on acetyl-LDL-derived NAAFAs, not on acetyl-LDL-cholesterol, and was not due to decreased cPLA2 activity per se. These data support the following model: lipoprotein-derived NAAFAs traffic via the NPC1 pathway from late endosomes/lysosomes to a critical pool of phospholipids. In competing reactions, these NAAFAs can be either esterified to cholesterol or incorporated into phospholipids, resulting in suppression of eicosanoid biosynthesis. In view of recent evidence suggesting dysfunctional cholesterol esterification in late lesional macrophages, these data predict that such cells would have highly suppressed eicosanoid synthesis, thus affecting eicosanoid-mediated cell signaling in advanced atherosclerosis.
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||Journal of Biological Chemistry|
|State||Published - Feb 27 2004|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology
- Cell Biology