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Biochim Biophys Acta. 1984 Oct 24;796(1):20-6.

Acetoacetate and glucose as substrates for lipid synthesis by rat brain oligodendrocytes and astrocytes in serum-free culture.


We have compared glucose and acetoacetate as precursors for lipogenesis and cholesterogenesis by oligodendrocytes and astrocytes, using mixed glial cultures enriched in oligodendrocytes. In order to differentiate between metabolic processes in oligodendrocytes and those in astrocytes, the other major cell type present in the mixed culture, we carried out parallel incubations with cultures from which the oligodendrocytes had been removed by treatment with anti-galactocerebroside serum and guinea-pig complement. The following results were obtained: 1. Both oligodendrocytes and astrocytes in culture actively utilize acetoacetate as a precursor for lipogenesis and cholesterogenesis. 2. In both cell types, the incorporation of acetoacetate into fatty acids and cholesterol exceeds that of glucose by a factor of 5-10 when the precursors are present at concentrations of 1 mM and higher. 3. Glucose stimulates acetoacetate incorporation into fatty acids and cholesterol, whereas acetoacetate reduces the entry of glucose into these lipids. This suggests that glucose is necessary for NADPH generation, but that otherwise the two precursors contribute to the same acetyl-CoA pool. 4. Both with acetoacetate and with glucose as precursor, oligodendrocytes are more active in cholesterol synthesis than astrocytes. 5. Using incorporation of 3H2O as an indicator for total lipid synthesis, we estimated that acetoacetate contributes one third of the acetyl groups and glucose one twentieth when saturating concentrations of both substrates are present.

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