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Free Radic Biol Med. 2000 Nov 1;29(9):814-24.

Glucose enhancement of LDL oxidation is strictly metal ion dependent.

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Evans Memorial Department of Medicine and Whitaker Cardiovascular Institute, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA 02118, USA.


Recent evidence suggests that lipoprotein oxidation is increased in diabetes, however, the mechanism(s) for such observations are not clear. We examined the effect of glucose on low-density lipoprotein (LDL) oxidation using metal ion-dependent and -independent oxidation systems. Pathophysiological concentrations of glucose (25 mM) enhanced copper-induced LDL oxidation as determined by conjugated diene formation or relative electrophoretic mobility (REM) on agarose gels. Similarly, iron-induced LDL oxidation was stimulated by glucose resulting in 4- to 6-fold greater REM than control incubations without glucose. In contrast, glucose had no effect on metal ion-independent LDL oxidation by aqueous peroxyl radicals. The effect of glucose on metal ion-dependent LDL oxidation was associated with enhanced reduction of metal ions, and in the case of iron-induced LDL oxidation, was completely inhibited by superoxide dismutase. The effect of glucose was mimicked by other reducing sugars, such as fructose and mannose, and the extent to which each sugar enhanced LDL oxidation was closely linked to its metal ion-reducing activity. Thus, promotion of LDL oxidation by glucose is specific for metal ion-dependent oxidation and involves increased metal ion reduction. These results provide one potential mechanism for enhanced LDL oxidation in diabetes.

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