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Cytometry A. 2006 Mar;69(3):189-91.

E-LDL and Ox-LDL differentially regulate ceramide and cholesterol raft microdomains in human Macrophages.

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  • 1Institute for Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine, University of Regensburg, 93042 Regensburg, Germany.


Atherosclerosis is characterized by the generation of lipid-loaded macrophage-derived foam cells. To study the effect of different types of atherogenic lipoproteins, human macrophages were loaded with enzymatically degraded low density lipoprotein (E-LDL) or oxidized LDL (Ox-LDL). Cellular cholesterol content was increased by E-LDL, whereas Ox-LDL increased the ceramide content. Cell surface expression analysis by flow cytometry and confocal microscopy revealed that Ox-LDL increased ceramide and lactosylceramide expression compared to E-LDL loading and induced ceramide rafts, whereas loading with E-LDL induced cholesterol-rich microdomains. Formation of different rafts may have consequences for raft associated signaling in cholesterol homeostasis and apoptosis in human macrophages.

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