Inhibitory action of benzo[α]pyrene on hepatic lipoprotein receptors in Vitro and on liver lipid homeostasis in mice

Hamed Layeghkhavidaki, Marie Claire Lanhers, Samina Akbar, Lynn Gregory-Pauron, Thierry Oster, Nathalie Grova, Brice Appenzeller, Jordane Jasniewski, Cyril Feidt, Catherine Corbier, Frances T. Yen

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10 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Dyslipidemia associated with obesity often manifests as increased plasma LDL and triglyceride-rich lipoprotein levels suggesting changes in hepatic lipoprotein receptor status. Persistent organic pollutants have been recently postulated to contribute to the obesity etiology by increasing adipogenesis, but little information is available on their potential effect on hepatic lipoprotein metabolism. Objective: The objective of this study was to investigate the effect of the common environmental pollutant, benzo[α]pyrene (B[α]P) on two lipoprotein receptors, the LDL-receptor and the lipolysis-stimulated lipoprotein receptor (LSR) as well as the ATP-binding cassette transporter A1 (ABCA1) using cell and animal models. Results: LSR, LDL-receptor as well as ABCA1 protein levels were significantly decreased by 26-48% in Hepa1-6 cells incubated (<2 h) in the presence of B[α]P (≤1 μM). Real-time PCR analysis and lactacystin studies revealed that this effect was due primarily to increased proteasome, and not lysosomal-mediated degradation rather than decreased transcription. Furthermore, ligand blots revealed that lipoproteins exposed to 1 or 5 μM B[α]P displayed markedly decreased (42-86%) binding to LSR or LDL-receptor. B[α]P-treated (0.5 mg/kg/48 h, i.p. 15 days) C57BL/6J mice displayed higher weight gain, associated with significant increases in plasma cholesterol, triglycerides, and liver cholesterol content, and decreased hepatic LDL-receptor and ABCA1 levels. Furthermore, correlational analysis revealed that B[α]P abolished the positive association observed in control mice between the LSR and LDL-receptor. Interestingly, levels of other proteins involved in liver cholesterol metabolism, ATP-binding cassette transporter G1 and scavenger receptor-BI, were decreased, while those of acyl-CoA:cholesterol acyltransferase 1 and 2 were increased in B[α]P-treated mice. Conclusions: B[α]P demonstrates inhibitory action on LSR and LDL-R, as well as ABCA1, which we propose leads to modified lipid status in B[α]P-treated mice, thus providing new insight into mechanisms underlying the involvement of pollutants in the disruption of lipid homeostasis, potentially contributing to dyslipidemia associated with obesity.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere102991
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 23 Jul 2014


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