Microsomal triglyceride transfer protein (Mttp) is a key player in the assembly and secretion of hepatic very low density lipoproteins (VLDL). Here we determined the effects of Mttp overexpression on hepatic triglyceride (TG) and VLDL secretion in leptin-deficient (ob/ob) mice, specifically in relation to apolipoproteinB (apoB) isoforms. We crossed Apobec1-/-mice with congenic ob/ob mice to generate apoB100- only ob/ob mice (A-ob/ob). The obesity phenotype in both genotypes was similar, but A-ob/ob mice had greater hepatic TG content. Administration of recombinant adenovirus expressing murine Mttp cDNA (Ad-mMTP) increased hepatic Mttp content and activity and increased hepatic VLDL-TG secretion in A-ob/ob mice. However, despite equivalent overexpression of Mttp, there was no change in VLDL-TG secretion in ob/ob mice in a wild-type Apobec1 background. Metabolic labeling studies in primary hepatocytes from A-ob/ob mice demonstrated that Ad-mMTP increased triglyceride secretion without changing the synthesis and secretion of apoB100, suggesting greater incorporation of TG into existing VLDL particles rather than increased particle number. Ad-mMTP administration failed to increase hepatic VLDL secretion in lean Apobec1-/-mice or controls. By contrast, VLDL secretion increased and hepatic TG content decreased following Ad-mMTP administration to human APOB transgenic mice crossed into the Apobec1-/-line. These findings demonstrate that Ad-mMTP increases murine hepatic VLDL-TG secretion only in the apoB100 background, and even then only in situations with either increased hepatic TG accumulation or increased apoB100 expression.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2013-2022
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of lipid research
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2008


  • ApoB mRNA editing
  • Apobec1
  • Hepatic steatosis
  • VLDL secretion


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