Helsingin yliopisto


Helsingin yliopiston verkkojulkaisut

University of Helsinki, Helsinki 2006

The high- and low-activity forms of human plasma phospholipid transfer protein (PLTP)

Minna Jšnis

Doctoral dissertation, October 2006.
University of Helsinki, Faculty of Biosciences, Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences, Division of Biochemistry and National Public Health Institute, Department of Molecular Medicine.

Plasma phospholipid transfer protein (PLTP) plays a crucial role in high-density lipoprotein (HDL) metabolism and reverse cholesterol transport (RCT). It mediates the generation of pre-beta-HDL particles, enhances the cholesterol efflux from peripheral cells to pre-beta-HDL, and metabolically maintains the plasma HDL levels by facilitating the transfer of post-lipolytic surface remnants of triglyceride-rich lipoproteins to HDL. In addition to the antiatherogenic properties, recent findings indicate that PLTP has also proatherogenic characteristics, and that these opposite characteristics of PLTP are dependent on the site of PLTP expression and action. In human plasma, PLTP exists in a high-activity (HA-PLTP) and a low-activity form (LA-PLTP), which are associated with macromolecular complexes of different size and composition. The aims of this thesis were to isolate the two PLTP forms from human plasma, to characterize the molecular complexes in which the HA- and LA-PLTP reside, and to study the interactions of the PLTP forms with apolipoproteins (apo) and the ability of apolipoproteins to regulate PLTP activity. In addition, we aimed to study the distribution of the two PLTP forms in a Finnish population sample as well as to find possible regulatory factors for PLTP by investigating the influence of lipid and glucose metabolism on the balance between the HA- and LA-PLTP. For these purposes, an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) capable of determining the serum total PLTP concentration and quantitating the two PLTP forms separately was developed.

In this thesis, it was demonstrated that the HA-PLTP isolated from human plasma copurified with apoE, whereas the LA-PLTP formed a complex with apoA-I. The separation of these two PLTP forms was carried out by a dextran sulfate (DxSO4)-CaCl2 precipitation of plasma samples before the mass determination. A similar immunoreactivity of the two PLTP forms in the ELISA could be reached after a partial sample denaturation by SDS. Among normolipidemic Finnish individuals, the mean PLTP mass was 6.6 +/- 1.5 mg/l and the mean PLTP activity 6.6 +/- 1.7 umol/ml/h. Of the serum PLTP concentration, almost 50% represented HA-PLTP. The results indicate that plasma HDL levels could regulate PLTP concentration, while PLTP activity could be regulated by plasma triglyceride-rich very low-density lipoprotein (VLDL) concentration. Furthermore, new evidence is presented that PLTP could also play a role in glucose metabolism. Finally, both PLTP forms were found to interact with apoA-I, apoA-IV, and apoE. In addition, both apoE and apoA-IV, but not apoA-I, were capable of activating the LA-PLTP. These findings suggest that the distribution of the HA- and LA-PLTP in human plasma is subject to dynamic regulation by apolipoproteins.

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Last updated 28.09.2006

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