Author(s): de Bont N, Netea MG, Demacker PN, Verschueren I, Kullberg BJ,
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Abstract Lipoproteins are able to neutralize bacterial lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and thereby inhibit the proinflammatory cytokine response. In a previous study, we demonstrated that hypercholesterolemic low density lipoprotein receptor knock-out (LDLr-/-) mice are protected against lethal endotoxemia and gram-negative infection. In the present study we investigated the susceptibility of apolipoprotein E knock-out mice (apoE-/-) to LPS and to Klebsiella pneumoniae. These mice have increased plasma lipoprotein concentrations in the very low density lipoprotein (VLDL)-sized fraction. Despite 8 -fold higher plasma cholesterol levels compared to controls, and in contrast to LDLr-/- mice, apoE-/- mice were significantly more susceptible to endotoxemia and to K. pneumoniae infection. Circulating TNFalpha concentrations after intravenously injected LPS were 4 - to 5-fold higher in apoE-/- mice, whereas IL-1alpha, IL-1beta, and IL-6 did not differ. This TNF response was not due to an increased cytokine production capacity of cells from apoE-/- mice, as ex vivo cytokine production in response to LPS did not differ between apoE-/- and control mice. The LPS-neutralizing capacity of apoE-/- plasma was significantly less than that of controls. Most likely, the absence of apoE itself in the knock-out mice explains the failure to neutralize LPS, despite the very high cholesterol concentrations.
This article was published in J Lipid Res
and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Cellular Immunology