Int J Mol Sci 2010 Nov 17;11(11):4660-72. Epub 2010 Nov 17.
Department of Medical Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran; E-Mails: (M.S.); (M.D.); (S.R.); (M.P.); (N.N.).
Transformation of macrophages to foam cells is determined by the rates of cholesterol uptake and efflux. This study uses a real time RT-PCR technique to investigate the role of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), α-linolenic acid (ALA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) in the regulation of the ATP-binding cassette A1 (ABCA1) and liver X receptor α (LXR) genes, which are involved in cholesterol homeostasis. Accordingly, these fatty acids significantly reduced the total, free and esterified cholesterols within the foam cells. While the expression of the ABCA1 and LXRα genes was increased in the presence of the pharmacological LXRα ligand, T0901317, their mRNA expression was not significantly affected by CLA, ALA and EPA. These results suggest that although polyunsaturated fatty acids have an effect on cholesterol homeostasis, they cannot change the expression of the ABCA1 and LXRα genes. Alternatively, several other genes and proteins may be involved.