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Atherosclerosis. 1985 Aug;56(2):127-37.

Effects of casein and soy protein on hepatic and serum lipids and lipoprotein lipid distributions in the rat.


Rats fed a semipurified diet containing casein developed higher levels of circulating triglycerides and cholesterol than animals fed a soy protein-containing diet. The increased serum lipid levels in non-fasted rats were associated largely with the d less than 1.006 g/ml lipoprotein particles (e.g. chylomicrons or very low density-like lipoproteins). In addition, casein-fed rats exhibited higher levels of circulating insulin and depressed hepatic 7 alpha-hydroxylase levels compared to soy-fed rats. Supplementation of the casein diet with arginine, to give an arginine/lysine ratio comparable to that in the soy diet, resulted in a reduction of d less than 1.006 g/ml lipids, a reduction in serum insulin levels and an elevation in hepatic 7 alpha-hydroxylase activity. Supplementation of the soy diet with lysine also resulted in modification of these parameters toward those observed with casein diets, albeit the effects were less dramatic. The results suggest that the hyperlipidemia associated with feeding casein-based diet is associated with decreased rates of clearance of chylomicron-like lipoproteins and their component triglycerides and cholesterol. Furthermore, this is largely prevented by addition of arginine to diets containing casein as the sole protein source.

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