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Atherosclerosis. 1995 Jun;115(2):243-53.

HDL, its enzymes and its potential to influence lipid peroxidation.

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Department of Medicine, Manchester Royal Infirmary, UK.


In seeking an explanation of the inverse relationship between serum high density lipoprotein (HDL) concentration and coronary heart disease (CHD) incidence, most investigations have been directed at its role in reverse cholesterol transport. However, recently it has become clear that HDL has the potential to limit oxidative modification of low density lipoprotein (LDL) whether induced by transition metals or by cells in tissue culture. In view of the current theory that oxidative modification of LDL is an important element in atherogenesis, this suggests another potential mechanism by which HDL might impede the development of CHD. HDL is the major carrier of cholesteryl ester hydroperoxides, but more than this it appears to have the prolonged capacity to decrease the total amount of lipid peroxides generated on LDL during oxidation while the quantity accumulating on HDL itself reaches an early plateau. These effects are not explained by chain-breaking antioxidants present in HDL and are likely to involve an enzymic mechanism. Several enzymes are present on HDL: paraoxonase, lecithin:cholesterol acyl transferase, platelet activating factor acetylhydrolase, phospholipase D and protease. Apolipoproteins, such as apolipoprotein AI, could also have enzymic activity. Evidence that some of these might act to metabolise lipid peroxidation products, such as oxidised phospholipids and lyso-phosphatidylcholine, is discussed in this review.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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