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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

PPAR-alpha and PPAR-gamma activators induce cholesterol removal from human macrophage foam cells through stimulation of the ABCA1 pathway.

Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARs) are nuclear receptors that regulate lipid and glucose metabolism and cellular differentiation. PPAR-alpha and PPAR-gamma are both expressed in human macrophages where they exert anti-inflammatory effects. The activation of PPAR-alpha may promote foam-cell formation by inducing expression of the macrophage scavenger receptor CD36. This prompted us to investigate the influence of different PPAR-activators on cholesterol metabolism and foam-cell formation of human primary and THP-1 macrophages. Here we show that PPAR-alpha and PPAR-gamma activators do not influence acetylated low density lipoprotein-induced foam-cell formation of human macrophages. In contrast, PPAR-alpha and PPAR-gamma activators induce the expression of the gene encoding ABCA1, a transporter that controls apoAI-mediated cholesterol efflux from macrophages. These effects are likely due to enhanced expression of liver-x-receptor alpha, an oxysterol-activated nuclear receptor which induces ABCA1-promoter transcription. Moreover, PPAR-alpha and PPAR-gamma activators increase apoAI-induced cholesterol efflux from normal macrophages. In contrast, PPAR-alpha or PPAR-gamma activation does not influence cholesterol efflux from macrophages isolated from patients with Tangier disease, which is due to a genetic defect in ABCA1. Here we identify a regulatory role for PPAR-alpha and PPAR-gamma in the first steps of the reverse-cholesterol- transport pathway through the activation of ABCA1-mediated cholesterol efflux in human macrophages.[1]


  1. PPAR-alpha and PPAR-gamma activators induce cholesterol removal from human macrophage foam cells through stimulation of the ABCA1 pathway. Chinetti, G., Lestavel, S., Bocher, V., Remaley, A.T., Neve, B., Torra, I.P., Teissier, E., Minnich, A., Jaye, M., Duverger, N., Brewer, H.B., Fruchart, J.C., Clavey, V., Staels, B. Nat. Med. (2001) [Pubmed]
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