Human apolipoprotein E allele and docosahexaenoic acid intake modulate peripheral cholesterol homeostasis in mice
Other titre : Cholesterol metabolism in apolipoprotein E4 mice
Pinçon, Anthony; Coulombe, Jean-Denis; Chouinard-Watkins, Raphaël; Plourde, Mélanie
Carrying at least one apolipoprotein E ε4 allele (E4+) is the main genetic risk factor for Alzheimer's disease (AD). Epidemiological studies support that consuming fatty fish rich in docosahexaenoic acid (DHA; 22:6ω3) is protective against development of AD. However, this protective effect seems not to hold in E4+. The involvement of APOE genotype on the relationship between DHA intake and cognitive decline could be mediated through cholesterol. Many studies show a link between cholesterol metabolism and AD progression. In this study, we investigated whether cholesterol metabolism is improved in E3+ and E4+ mice consuming a diet rich in DHA. Plasma cholesterol was 36% lower in E4+ mice compared to E3+ mice fed the control diet (P=.02), and in the liver, there was a significant genotype effect where cholesterol levels were 18% lower in E4+ mice than E3+ mice. The low-density lipoprotein receptor was overexpressed in the liver of E4+ mice. Plasma cholesterol levels were 33% lower after the DHA diet (P=.02) in E3+ mice only, and there was a significant diet effect where cholesterol level was 67% lower in the liver of mice fed DHA. Mice fed the DHA diet also had 62% less lipolysis stimulated lipoprotein receptor expression in the liver compared to mice fed the control diet (P<.0001), but there was no genotype effect. These findings suggest that plasma and liver cholesterol homeostasis and the receptors regulating uptake of cholesterol in the liver are modulated differently and independently by APOE allele and DHA intake.