Plasma lipoprotein-X quantification on filipin-stained gels: monitoring recombinant LCAT treatment ex vivo.
ABSTRACT: Familial LCAT deficiency (FLD) patients accumulate lipoprotein-X (LP-X), an abnormal nephrotoxic lipoprotein enriched in free cholesterol (FC). The low neutral lipid content of LP-X limits the ability to detect it after separation by lipoprotein electrophoresis and staining with Sudan Black or other neutral lipid stains. A sensitive and accurate method for quantitating LP-X would be useful to examine the relationship between plasma LP-X and renal disease progression in FLD patients and could also serve as a biomarker for monitoring recombinant human LCAT (rhLCAT) therapy. Plasma lipoproteins were separated by agarose gel electrophoresis and cathodal migrating bands corresponding to LP-X were quantified after staining with filipin, which fluoresces with FC, but not with neutral lipids. rhLCAT was incubated with FLD plasma and lipoproteins and LP-X changes were analyzed by agarose gel electrophoresis. Filipin detects synthetic LP-X quantitatively (linearity 20-200 mg/dl FC; coefficient of variation <20%) and sensitively (lower limit of quantitation <1 mg/ml FC), enabling LP-X detection in FLD, cholestatic, and even fish-eye disease patients. rhLCAT incubation with FLD plasma ex vivo reduced LP-X dose dependently, generated HDL, and decreased lipoprotein FC content. Filipin staining after agarose gel electrophoresis sensitively detects LP-X in human plasma and accurately quantifies LP-X reduction after rhLCAT incubation ex vivo.
Project description:Familial lecithin:cholesterol acyltransferase (LCAT) deficiency (FLD) is a rare genetic disease characterized by low HDL-C levels, low plasma cholesterol esterification, and the formation of Lipoprotein-X (Lp-X), an abnormal cholesterol-rich lipoprotein particle. LCAT deficiency causes corneal opacities, normochromic normocytic anemia, and progressive renal disease due to Lp-X deposition in the glomeruli. Recombinant LCAT is being investigated as a potential therapy for this disorder. Several hepatic disorders, namely primary biliary cirrhosis, primary sclerosing cholangitis, cholestatic liver disease, and chronic alcoholism also develop Lp-X, which may contribute to the complications of these disorders. We aimed to test the hypothesis that an increase in plasma LCAT could prevent the formation of Lp-X in other diseases besides FLD. We generated a murine model of intrahepatic cholestasis in LCAT-deficient (KO), wild type (WT), and LCAT-transgenic (Tg) mice by gavaging mice with alpha-naphthylisothiocyanate (ANIT), a drug well known to induce intrahepatic cholestasis. Three days after the treatment, all mice developed hyperbilirubinemia and elevated liver function markers (ALT, AST, Alkaline Phosphatase). The presence of high levels of LCAT in the LCAT-Tg mice, however, prevented the formation of Lp-X and other plasma lipid abnormalities in WT and LCAT-KO mice. In addition, we demonstrated that multiple injections of recombinant human LCAT can prevent significant accumulation of Lp-X after ANIT treatment in WT mice. In summary, LCAT can protect against the formation of Lp-X in a murine model of cholestasis and thus recombinant LCAT could be a potential therapy to prevent the formation of Lp-X in other diseases besides FLD.
Project description:Renal complications are the major cause of morbidity and mortality in patients with familial lecithin-cholesterol acyltransferase (LCAT) deficiency (FLD). We report three FLD patients, two of them siblings-only one of whom developed renal disease-and the third case being a young man with early renal disease. The aim of this study was to analyze the clinical characteristics and possible mechanisms associated with renal disease in these patients. Plasma lipid levels, LCAT activity, lipoprotein particle profile by NMR and FPLC, free and esterified cholesterol, presence of lipoprotein X (LpX) and DNA sequencing in the three FLD patients have been determined. The three cases presented clinical characteristics of FLD, although only one of the siblings developed renal disease, at 45 years of age, while the other patient developed the disease in his youth. Genetic analysis revealed new missense homozygous mutations, p.(Ile202Thr) in both siblings and p.(Arg171Glu) in the other patient. Lipoprotein particle analysis showed that the two patients with renal disease presented higher numbers of small very low-density lipoprotein (VLDL) and a higher concentration of triglycerides in VLDL. This study reports three new cases of LCAT deficiency, not previously described. Renal disease is not only dependent on LCAT deficiency, and could be due to the presence of VLDL particles, which are rich in triglycerides, free cholesterol and LpX.
Project description:Lecithin cholesterol acyltransferase (LCAT) is a lipid-modification enzyme that catalyzes the transfer of the acyl chain from the second position of lecithin to the hydroxyl group of cholesterol (FC) on plasma lipoproteins to form cholesteryl acylester and lysolecithin. Familial LCAT deficiency is an intractable autosomal recessive disorder caused by inherited dysfunction of the LCAT enzyme. The disease appears in two different phenotypes depending on the position of the gene mutation: familial LCAT deficiency (FLD, OMIM 245900) that lacks esterification activity on both HDL and ApoB-containing lipoproteins, and fish-eye disease (FED, OMIM 136120) that lacks activity only on HDL. Impaired metabolism of cholesterol and phospholipids due to LCAT dysfunction results in abnormal concentrations, composition and morphology of plasma lipoproteins and further causes ectopic lipid accumulation and/or abnormal lipid composition in certain tissues/cells, and serious dysfunction and complications in certain organs. Marked reduction of plasma HDL-cholesterol (HDL-C) and corneal opacity are common clinical manifestations of FLD and FED. FLD is also accompanied by anemia, proteinuria and progressive renal failure that eventually requires hemodialysis. Replacement therapy with the LCAT enzyme should prevent progression of serious complications, particularly renal dysfunction and corneal opacity. A clinical research project aiming at gene/cell therapy is currently underway.
Project description:Human familial lecithin:cholesterol acyltransferase (LCAT) deficiency (FLD) is characterized by low HDL, accumulation of an abnormal cholesterol-rich multilamellar particle called lipoprotein-X (LpX) in plasma, and renal disease. The aim of our study was to determine if LpX is nephrotoxic and to gain insight into the pathogenesis of FLD renal disease. We administered a synthetic LpX, nearly identical to endogenous LpX in its physical, chemical and biologic characteristics, to wild-type and Lcat-/- mice. Our in vitro and in vivo studies demonstrated an apoA-I and LCAT-dependent pathway for LpX conversion to HDL-like particles, which likely mediates normal plasma clearance of LpX. Plasma clearance of exogenous LpX was markedly delayed in Lcat-/- mice, which have low HDL, but only minimal amounts of endogenous LpX and do not spontaneously develop renal disease. Chronically administered exogenous LpX deposited in all renal glomerular cellular and matrical compartments of Lcat-/- mice, and induced proteinuria and nephrotoxic gene changes, as well as all of the hallmarks of FLD renal disease as assessed by histological, TEM, and SEM analyses. Extensive in vivo EM studies revealed LpX uptake by macropinocytosis into mouse glomerular endothelial cells, podocytes, and mesangial cells and delivery to lysosomes where it was degraded. Endocytosed LpX appeared to be degraded by both human podocyte and mesangial cell lysosomal PLA2 and induced podocyte secretion of pro-inflammatory IL-6 in vitro and renal Cxl10 expression in Lcat-/- mice. In conclusion, LpX is a nephrotoxic particle that in the absence of Lcat induces all of the histological and functional hallmarks of FLD and hence may serve as a biomarker for monitoring recombinant LCAT therapy. In addition, our studies suggest that LpX-induced loss of endothelial barrier function and release of cytokines by renal glomerular cells likely plays a role in the initiation and progression of FLD nephrosis.
Project description:Lecithin:cholesterol acyltransferase (LCAT) catalyzes plasma cholesteryl ester formation and is defective in familial lecithin:cholesterol acyltransferase deficiency (FLD), an autosomal recessive disorder characterized by low high-density lipoprotein, anemia, and renal disease. This study aimed to investigate the mechanism by which compound A [3-(5-(ethylthio)-1,3,4-thiadiazol-2-ylthio)pyrazine-2-carbonitrile], a small heterocyclic amine, activates LCAT. The effect of compound A on LCAT was tested in human plasma and with recombinant LCAT. Mass spectrometry and nuclear magnetic resonance were used to determine compound A adduct formation with LCAT. Molecular modeling was performed to gain insight into the effects of compound A on LCAT structure and activity. Compound A increased LCAT activity in a subset (three of nine) of LCAT mutations to levels comparable to FLD heterozygotes. The site-directed mutation LCAT-Cys31Gly prevented activation by compound A. Substitution of Cys31 with charged residues (Glu, Arg, and Lys) decreased LCAT activity, whereas bulky hydrophobic groups (Trp, Leu, Phe, and Met) increased activity up to 3-fold (P < 0.005). Mass spectrometry of a tryptic digestion of LCAT incubated with compound A revealed a +103.017 m/z adduct on Cys31, consistent with the addition of a single hydrophobic cyanopyrazine ring. Molecular modeling identified potential interactions of compound A near Cys31 and structural changes correlating with enhanced activity. Functional groups important for LCAT activation by compound A were identified by testing compound A derivatives. Finally, sulfhydryl-reactive ?-lactams were developed as a new class of LCAT activators. In conclusion, compound A activates LCAT, including some FLD mutations, by forming a hydrophobic adduct with Cys31, thus providing a mechanistic rationale for the design of future LCAT activators.
Project description:Lecithin cholesterol acyl transferase (LCAT) deficiency is associated with low high-density lipoprotein (HDL) and the presence of an abnormal lipoprotein called lipoprotein X (Lp-X) that contributes to end-stage renal disease. We examined the possibility of using LCAT an as enzyme replacement therapy agent by testing the infusion of human recombinant (r)LCAT into several mouse models of LCAT deficiency. Infusion of plasma from human LCAT transgenic mice into LCAT-knockout (KO) mice rapidly increased HDL-cholesterol (C) and lowered cholesterol in fractions containing very-low-density lipoprotein (VLDL) and Lp-X. rLCAT was produced in a stably transfected human embryonic kidney 293f cell line and purified to homogeneity, with a specific activity of 1850 nmol/mg/h. Infusion of rLCAT intravenously, subcutaneously, or intramuscularly into human apoA-I transgenic mice showed a nearly identical effect in increasing HDL-C approximately 2-fold. When rLCAT was intravenously injected into LCAT-KO mice, it showed a similar effect as plasma from human LCAT transgenic mice in correcting the abnormal lipoprotein profile, but it had a considerably shorter half-life of approximately 1.23 ± 0.63 versus 8.29 ± 1.82 h for the plasma infusion. rLCAT intravenously injected in LCAT-KO mice crossed with human apolipoprotein (apo)A-I transgenic mice had a half-life of 7.39 ± 2.1 h and increased HDL-C more than 8-fold. rLCAT treatment of LCAT-KO mice was found to increase cholesterol efflux to HDL isolated from mice when added to cells transfected with either ATP-binding cassette (ABC) transporter A1 or ABCG1. In summary, rLCAT treatment rapidly restored the normal lipoprotein phenotype in LCAT-KO mice and increased cholesterol efflux, suggesting the possibility of using rLCAT as an enzyme replacement therapy agent for LCAT deficiency.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Humans with familial lecithin:cholesterol acyltransferase (LCAT) deficiency (FLD) have extremely low or undetectable high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) levels and by early adulthood develop many manifestations of the disorder, including corneal opacities, anemia, and renal disease. OBJECTIVE:To determine if infusions of recombinant human LCAT (rhLCAT) could reverse the anemia, halt progression of renal disease, and normalize HDL in FLD. METHODS:rhLCAT (ACP-501) was infused intravenously over 1 hour on 3 occasions in a dose optimization phase (0.3, 3.0, and 9.0 mg/kg), then 3.0 or 9.0 mg/kg every 1 to 2 weeks for 7 months in a maintenance phase. Plasma lipoproteins, lipids, LCAT levels, and several measures of renal function and other clinical labs were monitored. RESULTS:LCAT concentration peaked at the end of each infusion and decreased to near baseline over 7 days. Renal function generally stabilized or improved and the anemia improved. After infusion, HDL-C rapidly increased, peaking near normal in 8 to 12 hours; analysis of HDL particles by various methods all revealed rapid sequential disappearance of pre?-HDL and small ?-4 HDL and appearance of normal ?-HDL. Low-density lipoprotein cholesterol increased more slowly than HDL-C. Of note, triglyceride routinely decreased after meals after infusion, in contrast to the usual postprandial increase in the absence of rhLCAT infusion. CONCLUSIONS:rhLCAT infusions were well tolerated in this first-in-human study in FLD; the anemia improved, as did most parameters related to renal function in spite of advanced disease. Plasma lipids transiently normalized, and there was rapid sequential conversion of small pre?-HDL particles to mature spherical ?-HDL particles.
Project description:LCAT, a plasma enzyme that esterifies cholesterol, has been proposed to play an antiatherogenic role, but animal and epidemiologic studies have yielded conflicting results. To gain insight into LCAT and the role of free cholesterol (FC) in atherosclerosis, we examined the effect of LCAT over- and underexpression in diet-induced atherosclerosis in scavenger receptor class B member I-deficient [Scarab(-/-)] mice, which have a secondary defect in cholesterol esterification. Scarab(-/-)×LCAT-null [Lcat(-/-)] mice had a decrease in HDL-cholesterol and a high plasma ratio of FC/total cholesterol (TC) (0.88 ± 0.033) and a marked increase in VLDL-cholesterol (VLDL-C) on a high-fat diet. Scarab(-/-)×LCAT-transgenic (Tg) mice had lower levels of VLDL-C and a normal plasma FC/TC ratio (0.28 ± 0.005). Plasma from Scarab(-/-)×LCAT-Tg mice also showed an increase in cholesterol esterification during in vitro cholesterol efflux, but increased esterification did not appear to affect the overall rate of cholesterol efflux or hepatic uptake of cholesterol. Scarab(-/-)×LCAT-Tg mice also displayed a 51% decrease in aortic sinus atherosclerosis compared with Scarab(-/-) mice (P < 0.05). In summary, we demonstrate that increased cholesterol esterification by LCAT is atheroprotective, most likely through its ability to increase HDL levels and decrease pro-atherogenic apoB-containing lipoprotein particles.
Project description:The acyltransferase LCAT mediates FA esterification of plasma cholesterol. In vitro studies have shown that LCAT also FA-esterifies several oxysterols, but in vivo evidence is lacking. Here, we measured both free and FA-esterified forms of sterols in 206 healthy volunteers and 8 individuals with genetic LCAT deficiency, including familial LCAT deficiency (FLD) and fish-eye disease (FED). In the healthy volunteers, the mean values of the ester-to-total molar ratios of the following sterols varied: 4β-hydroxycholesterol (4βHC), 0.38; 5,6α-epoxycholesterol (5,6αEC), 0.46; 5,6β-epoxycholesterol (5,6βEC), 0.51; cholesterol, 0.70; cholestane-3β,5α,6β-triol (CT), 0.70; 7-ketocholesterol (7KC), 0.75; 24S-hydroxycholesterol (24SHC), 0.80; 25-hydroxycholesterol (25HC), 0.81; 27-hydroxycholesterol (27HC), 0.86; and 7α-hydroxycholesterol (7αHC), 0.89. In the individuals with LCAT deficiency, the plasma levels of the FA-esterified forms of cholesterol, 5,6αEC, 5,6βEC, CT, 7αHC, 7KC, 24SHC, 25HC, and 27HC, were significantly lower than those in the healthy volunteers. The individuals with FLD had significantly lower FA-esterified forms of 7αHC, 24SHC, and 27HC than those with FED. It is of note that, even in the three FLD individuals with negligible plasma cholesteryl ester, substantial amounts of the FA-esterified forms of 4βHC, 5,6αEC, 7αHC, 7KC, and 27HC were present. We conclude that LCAT has a major role in the FA esterification of many plasma oxysterols but contributes little to the FA esterification of 4βHC. Substantial FA esterification of 4βHC, 5,6αEC, 7αHC, 7KC, and 27HC is independent of LCAT.
Project description:Familial lecithin-cholesterol acyltransferase deficiency (FLD) is a rare recessive disorder of cholesterol metabolism, caused by loss-of-function mutations in the human LCAT gene, leading to alterations in the lipid/lipoprotein profile, with extremely low HDL levels.The classical FLD phenotype is characterized by diffuse corneal opacification, haemolytic anaemia and proteinuric chronic kidney disease (CKD); an incomplete form, only affecting the corneas, has been reported in a few families worldwide.We describe an intermediate phenotype of LCAT deficiency, with CKD preceding the development of corneal clouding, in two Portuguese brothers apparently homozygous for a novel missense LCAT gene mutation. The atypical phenotype, the diagnosis of membranous nephropathy in the proband's native kidney biopsy, the late-onset and delayed recognition of the corneal opacification, the co-segregation with Gilbert syndrome and the late recurrence of the primary disease in kidney allograft all contributed to obscure the diagnosis of an LCAT deficiency syndrome for many years.A major teaching point is that on standard light microscopy examination the kidney biopsies of patients with LCAT deficiency with residual enzyme activity may not show significant vacuolization and may be misdiagnosed as membranous nephropathy. The cases of these two patients also illustrate the importance of performing detailed physical examination in young adults presenting with proteinuric CKD, as the most important clue to the diagnosis of FLD is in the eyes.