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Biochim Biophys Acta. 1979 Nov 21;575(2):266-76.

Effects of ML-236B on cholesterol metabolism in mice and rats: lack of hypocholesterolemic activity in normal animals.


ML-263B (compactin), a competitive inhibitor of 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-CoA reductase, is very effective in lowering serum cholesterol levels in animal species such as hens, dogs, monkeys and man. In the present studies, the effect of this drug on cholesterol metabolism in several strains of mice and rats was studied. The results indicate that, when administered for a longer period, the drug showed no hypocholesterolemic activity in these species under either normo- or hypercholesterolemic conditions, except for rats treated with the detergent Triton WR-1339. The administration of ML-236B caused a significant decrease in fecal excretion of bile acids and in the hepatic levels of cholesterol 7 alpha-hydroxylase, and produced a marked increase in hepatic levels of 3-hydroxy-3-methylglutaryl-CoA reductase activity, resulting in no inhibition of hepatic sterol synthesis, even in the presence of the drug in the active form(s). It is concluded that the lack of hypocholesterolemic activity of ML-236B in mice and rats could, at least partly, be explained by these unexpected results.

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