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Br J Nutr. 2008 Apr;99(4):749-55. Epub 2007 Oct 5.

Oxidised cholesterol is more hypercholesterolaemic and atherogenic than non-oxidised cholesterol in hamsters.

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Food and Nutritional Sciences Programme, Department of Biochemistry, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Shatin, NT, Hong Kong, China.


The present study was to test the relative hypercholesterolaemic and atherogenic potency of oxidised cholesterol (OxC) and non-oxidised cholesterol in hamsters. An OxC mixture, prepared by heating pure cholesterol (100 g) at 160 degrees C in air for 72 h, contained 78 % cholesterol and 22 % OxC. Fifty Golden Syrian hamsters were randomly divided into five groups of ten animals and fed the control diet, a 0.05 % cholesterol diet (C-0.05), a 0.10 % cholesterol diet (C-0.1), a 0.05 % OxC mixture diet (OxC-0.05) or a 0.10 % OxC mixture diet (OxC-0.1), respectively. The OxC-0.05 and OxC-0.1 groups were more hypercholesterolaemic and had serum total cholesterol 22 and 12 % higher than the corresponding C-0.05 and C-0.1 hamsters (P < 0.05). The OxC-0.1 group demonstrated greater deposition of cholesterol and had a larger area of atherosclerotic plaque in the aorta than the corresponding C-0.1 hamsters (P < 0.05). Similarly, the aorta in the OxC-0.1 group showed greater inhibition on acetylcholine-induced relaxation compared with that in the C-0.1 hamsters. It was concluded that OxC was much more hypercholesterolaemic and atherogenic than cholesterol.

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