Interaction between variant apolipoproteins C-II and E that affects plasma lipoprotein concentrations.
The genes for apolipoprotein (apo) C-II, a cofactor for activation of lipoprotein lipase, and apo E, a ligand for receptor-mediated uptake of triglyceride-rich lipoproteins, are physically linked on chromosome 19q13.1. In a large Caribbean Caucasian family, several individuals had clinical features of the complete absence of lipoprotein lipase activity and were homozygous for a DNA frameshift mutation of apo C-II, imparting functional inactivity to the mutant protein. Plasma from heterozygous carriers of this mutation, when compared with plasma from relatives who were noncarriers, had significantly diminished capacity to activate lipoprotein lipase in vitro. We also observed in heterozygotes for this mutation a wide range of serum lipid and lipoprotein levels. When age and sex were taken into account, the presence of a single apo E allele encoding the E4 isoform occurring in individuals with a single mutant apo C-II allele was strongly associated with higher levels of cholesterol, triglycerides, very low density lipoprotein cholesterol, and non-high density lipoprotein cholesterol when compared with those of relatives who carried neither or only one variant allele. This suggests that a single genetic mutation that usually has a recessive effect on lipoprotein metabolism can have an interactive effect on lipid phenotype when it is coinherited with a single mutation at another gene whose product affects the same metabolic pathway.
- Copyright © 1991 by American Heart Association