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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. May 1987; 84(9): 2995–2998.
PMCID: PMC304787

Oxidatively modified low density lipoproteins: a potential role in recruitment and retention of monocyte/macrophages during atherogenesis.


Previous studies in this laboratory established that low density lipoprotein (LDL) incubated with cultured endothelial cells, smooth muscle cells, or macrophages undergoes free radical-catalyzed oxidative modification that generates lipid peroxides and extensive structural changes in the LDL molecule. The oxidatively modified LDL strongly inhibited chemotactic responses of the mouse resident peritoneal macrophage. The present studies show that this oxidized LDL does not inhibit the motility of mouse monocytes and actually exhibits a chemotactic activity for human monocytes; the chemotactic activity of the oxidized LDL resides in the lipid fraction. These findings allow us to propose a pathogenetic sequence by which elevated plasma LDL levels, followed by oxidative modification in the arterial wall, could sufficiently account for the generation of the lipid-laden foam cells and the initiation of the fatty streak, the earliest well-defined lesion in atherogenesis.

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