Apo E-containing lipoproteins in low or high density lipoprotein deficiency.
Apolipoprotein (apo) E-containing subfractions of very low density lipoprotein (VLDL), intermediate density lipoprotein (IDL), and high density lipoprotein (HDL) have been described in normolipidemic and hyperlipidemic subjects. These lipoproteins exist, however, in the presence of large amounts of apo A-I- and apo B-containing lipoproteins so that it has been difficult to assess the independence of these apo E-containing subclasses from the major lipoprotein classes. The present study has approached this question by taking advantage of three hypolipidemic states in which one or more of the major apolipoproteins is deficient or absent. After separating lipoproteins from whole plasma by molecular sieve chromatography followed by radioimmunoassay of column fractions, we found that two subjects with abetalipoproteinemia had no apo E-containing lipoproteins the size of VLDL or IDL and all the plasma apo E was in a fraction of large HDL. Two subjects with Tangier disease and two with familial apo A-I/C-III deficiency had extremely low levels of HDL cholesterol and of apo A-I-containing lipoproteins. In spite of the absence of classical HDL, a major fraction of apo E-containing lipoproteins was reproducibly observed at the elution volume characteristic of large HDL and was identical to that found in normal subjects. These data thus suggest the existence of apo E-containing lipoproteins that are the size of HDL and are not dependent upon the presence of either apo B or apo A-I. While studies in normal subjects indicate that apo E is associated with other apolipoproteins in HDL, further investigations will be needed to determine the full composition of these apo E-containing lipoproteins in the lipoprotein-deficient patients described in this report.
- Copyright © 1985 by American Heart Association