Heterozygous lipoprotein lipase deficiency (LPL+/-) is common and has been implicated in premature atherosclerosis in epidemiologic studies. However, in vitro data suggest that LPL deficiency in the vascular wall may be antiatherogenic. To address the role of LPL in atherosclerosis, LPL+/- mice in the C57BL/6J background were fed an atherogenic diet for 8 months. LPL+/- mice were more dyslipidemic than +/+ animals due to increased concentrations of non-HDL lipoproteins. There was no difference in aortic origin atherosclerosis between LPL+/(n = 56) and +/+ (n = 55) mice. LPL+/- mice in the low density lipoprotein receptor knockout (LDLR-/-) background were fed the same atherogenic diet for 3 months. LPL+/-LDLR-/- mice were more dyslipidemic than LPL+/+LDLR-/- animals. There was no difference in atherosclerosis assayed for the entire aorta and no difference in aortic sterol content between LPL+/-LDLR-/(n = 28) and LPL+/+LDLR-/- (n = 15) mice. LPL protein was detected in murine lesions in a consistent layered pattern. More luminal, lipid-laden macrophages generally did not stain for LPL, but deeper, lipid-poor macrophages as well as necrotic core regions contained immunoreactive LPL. LPL protein was more abundant in lesions from LPL+/+ LDLR-/- than LPL+/-LDLR-/- mice. After eating an atherogenic diet, LPL+/- as compared to LPL+/+ mice have more dyslipidemia, but no more atherosclerosis, and less LPL protein in atherosclerotic lesions. These data suggest that lipoprotein lipase deficiency in the vascular wall could prevent the retention of atherogenic lipoproteins.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1141-1151
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of lipid research
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1998


  • Cholesterol
  • LDL receptor knockout mice
  • Macrophage
  • Triglyceride
  • Vascular wall


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