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Free Radic Biol Med. 2006 Oct 1;41(7):1031-40. Epub 2006 Jul 12.

Antioxidant and cytoprotective properties of high-density lipoproteins in vascular cells.

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INSERM U 466, Hôpital Rangueil Toulouse, France.


Beside their key role in the regulation of cholesterol homeostasis, HDL exhibit antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that participate to their general antiatherogenic effect. The purpose of this review is to summarize the recent findings on antioxidant activity and cytoprotective cell signalling elicited by HDL against oxidized LDL and proatherogenic agents in vascular cells. HDL exhibit an antioxidant activity efficient to prevent LDL oxidation, or to inactivate newly formed lipid oxidation products. The antioxidant ability of HDL is due to the apoprotein moiety and to the presence of associated enzymes, paraoxonase and PAF-Acetyl Hydrolase. HDL prevent the intracellular oxidative stress and the inflammatory response elicited by oxidized LDL (ox-LDL), by inhibiting the NFkappaB signalling pathway, and the subsequent inflammatory events (expression of adhesion molecules, recruitment and proliferation of mononuclear cells within the vascular wall). HDL prevent ox-LDL-mediated cell activation and proliferation, this being also attributed to the presence in HDL of sphingosine-1 phosphate which modulates the migration and survival of vascular cells. Lastly, HDL inhibit apoptosis elicited by ox-LDL in vascular cells. Recent evidences indicate that, beside their strong antiatherogenic properties, HDL could exert their protective effect in diseases generally associated to inflammatory events.

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