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

Role of hydrophilic bile acids and of sterols on cholelithiasis in the hamster.

The effect of various dietary additions such as cholesterol, beta-sitosterol, bile acids, and bile acid analogs on gallstone formation was studied in the hamster. Gallstones were formed in 50% of the animals fed a high glucose, fat-free diet. Administration of 0.2% cholesterol or 1% beta-sitosterol had no effect on the incidence of gallstones. Ursodeoxycholic acid (0.5%) and its analog ursodeoxy-oxazoline [2-(3 alpha, 7 beta-dihydroxy-24-nor-5 beta-cholanyl)-4,4-dimethyl-2- oxazoline] were ineffective in preventing gallstones. Hyodeoxycholic acid and hyodeoxy-oxazoline [2-(3 alpha,6 alpha-dihydroxy-24-nor-5 beta-cholanyl)-4,4-dimethyl-2- oxazoline] at the same dosage effectively prevented gallstones, while the trihydroxy bile acid, hyocholic acid, was not effective. Of all the dietary regimens tested, only hyodeoxycholic acid significantly lowered serum cholesterol. The lithogenic diet produced a five-fold increase in hepatic HMG-CoA reductase activity; this activity was not affected by dietary cholesterol or beta-sitosterol. Hyodeoxycholic acid and hyocholic acid feeding increased the reductase activity by an additional 50% while the other bile acids had no effect. beta-Sitosterol doubled the cholesterol 7 alpha-hydroxylase activity whereas hyodeoxy-oxazoline lowered it. Hyodeoxycholic acid-fed animals had significantly lower cholesterol absorption than the animals on the lithogenic diet alone. Biliary cholesterol content increased dramatically in the animals fed the lithogenic diet and was increased still further by ursodeoxycholic acid, hyodeoxycholic acid, and hyodeoxy-oxazoline. These data show that hyodeoxycholic acid and hyodeoxy-oxazoline do not prevent gallstones by inhibiting hepatic cholesterol synthesis or biliary cholesterol secretion.[1]


  1. Role of hydrophilic bile acids and of sterols on cholelithiasis in the hamster. Singhal, A.K., Cohen, B.I., Finver-Sadowsky, J., McSherry, C.K., Mosbach, E.H. J. Lipid Res. (1984) [Pubmed]
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