Abstract 334: The LXRβ Selective Agonist, VTP-38443, Significantly Decreases Plaque Cholesterol Ester Content and Inflammation in a Murine Model of Accelerated Atherosclerosis
The ligand-activated transcription factors LXRα and LXRβ are important regulators of cholesterol metabolism and inflammation. Activation of LXR was previously shown to inhibit atherosclerosis in animal models through activation of reverse cholesterol transport (RCT) and suppression of vascular inflammation. VTP-38443 is a potent selective and orally bioavailable modulator of LXRβ that is being pursued for the prevention of subsequent vascular events following an acute coronary syndrome (ACS) episode. VTP-38443 is a potent binder (Ki=12 nM) and activator (EC50=17 nM) of LXRβ. It is ~20x selective for LXRβ versus LXRβ in both binding and activation. In primary human cells, it induces the expression of the cholesterol efflux pumps ABCA1 and ABCG1, markers of RCT, and promotes cholesterol efflux from human fibroblasts at low concentrations (EC50 = 14 nM). Orally dosed VTP-38443 demonstrates robust induction of ABCA1 and ABCG1 in mice (ED50 < 0.3 mg/kg) and primates (ED50 < 0.1 mg/kg). Based on this robust activity, VTP-38443 was tested in the apoE -/- carotid artery ligated mouse model, an accelerated atherosclerosis model. ApoE-/- mice (9 week) were fed a Western diet for 2 weeks at which point the left common carotid artery was ligated. Mice remained on the Western diet for 2 weeks post-surgery and were dosed BID with VTP-38443 (0.05, 0.2 and 1 mg/kg/dose) or a non-selective LXR agonist, TO90137 (20 mg/kg/day) during this time. Plasma cholesterol and TGs were measured as were cholesterol esters and FDG-6-phosphate, a biomarker of plaque inflammation, in the carotid plaques. VTP-38443 gave a dose-dependent reduction in plasma cholesterol (35% at 1 mg/kg) and a modest dose-dependent increase in plasma TGs ranging from 5% to 45% of the TG increase seen with TO90137. Plaque analysis showed a highly significant decrease in carotid cholesterol ester content at all doses, achieving >90% reduction at the highest dose. In addition, there was a significant reduction (~40-50%) in FDG-6 phosphate at all doses of VTP-38443, indicating a decrease in vascular inflammation. These data indicate that LXRβ activation may decrease plaque cholesterol content and reduce plaque inflammation in ACS.
Author Disclosures: G.M. McGeehan: Employment; Significant; Vitae Pharmaceuticals. D.S. Lala: Employment; Significant; Vitae Pharmaceuticals. Y. Zhao: Employment; Significant; Vitae Pharmaceuticals. P.B. Noto: Employment; Significant; Vitae Pharmaceuticals. L. Zhuang: Employment; Significant; Vitae Pharmaceuticals. D.A. Claremon: Employment; Significant; Vitae Pharmaceuticals. S. Meng: Employment; Significant; Vitae Pharmaceuticals. Y. Bukhtiyarov: Employment; Significant; Vitae Pharmaceuticals. R.R. Gregg: Employment; Significant; Vitae Pharmaceuticals.
- © 2015 by American Heart Association, Inc.