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Pathol Int. 2009 Mar;59(3):152-60. doi: 10.1111/j.1440-1827.2009.02343.x.

Expression of liver X receptor alpha and lipid metabolism in granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor-induced human monocyte-derived macrophage.

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Division of Cellular and Molecular Pathology, Department of Cellular Function, Niigata University Graduate School of Medical and Dental Sciences, Niigata, Japan.


Liver X receptor (LXR) is a nuclear receptor that acts as a sterol sensor and metabolic regulator of cholesterol and lipid homeostasis. The foam cell transformation of macrophages (Mvarphi) is considered a critical process in atherosclerotic lesions. The relationship, however, of the foam cell transformation of Mvarphi and LXR is not fully understood. The purpose of the present study was to examine the expression of LXRalpha, retinoid X receptor (RXR)alpha, ATP-binding cassette transporter (ABCA1), and macrophage scavenger receptor A (MSR-A), and lipid accumulation in human monocyte-derived Mvarphi. The expression of LXRalpha, ABCA1, MSR-A in 7 day cultured granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF)-induced Mvarphi (GM-Mvarphi) was significantly higher than that in 7 day cultured M-CSF-induced Mvarphi (M-Mvarphi). The expression levels of LXRalpha, ABCA1 and MSR-A protein decreased from 48 h to 5 days after the addition of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) in GM-Mvarphi, but only MSR-A protein decreased at 5 days after the addition of LPS in M-Mvarphi. Intracellular lipid accumulation was clearly observed when GM-Mvarphi was pre-stimulated with LPS for 48 h and incubated with oxidized LDL for an additional 5 days. These findings suggest that the inhibitory activity of LXRalpha, ABCA1 and MSR-A by LPS may be related to the transformation of Mvarphis, especially GM-Mvarphi into foam cells.

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