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Arch Cardiol Mex. 2007 Jan-Mar;77(1):17-24.

[High-density lipoproteins (HDL) size and composition are modified in the rat by a diet supplemented with "Hass" avocado (Persea americana Miller)].

[Article in Spanish]

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Departamento de Fisiología, INCICH.



To determine the effects of dietary avocado on HDL structure and their associated enzyme, paraoxonase 1 (PON1).


Fifteen Wistar male rats received avocado as part of their daily meal (5 g by 17.5 g chow diet), keeping the caloric intake similar to the control group (n=15) that received their usual chow diet. After 5 weeks, HDL were isolated by sequential ultracentrifugation and their size and chemical composition were analyzed. PON1 was determined in serum spectrophotometrically using phenylacetate as substrate.


Rats that received avocado had about 27% lower triglycerides plasma levels whereas their HDL-cholesterol was 17% higher as compared to control group. The mean HDL Stokes diameter was significantly lower in avocado group (11.71 +/- 0.8 vs. 12.27 +/- 0.26 nm, in control group, p < 0.05). The HDL size decrease was associated to a lower content of protein, particularly of apo Al, with a concomitant higher proportion of phospholipids in HDL isolated from avocado group. HDL structural modifications induced by avocado were not related to modifications of LCAT and PLTP activities, but occurred in parallel with higher serum levels of PON1 activity when compared to the controls (57.4 +/- 8.9 vs. 43.0 +/- 5.6 micromol/min/mL serum, p < 0.05).


The inclusion of avocado in the diet decreased plasma triglycerides, increased HDL-cholesterol plasma levels and modified HDL structure. The latter effect may enhance the antiatherogenic properties of HDL since PON1 activity also increased as a consequence of avocado.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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