[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Natural killer T (NKT) cells have recently been implicated in atherogenesis, primarily for their ability to recognize and respond to lipid antigens. Because the atherosclerotic lesion is characterized by the retention and modification of lipids in the vascular wall, NKT cells may be involved in promoting the local vascular inflammatory response. Here, we investigate the proatherogenic role of NKT cells in an adoptive transfer model of atherosclerosis, using as recipients immune-deficient, atherosclerosis-susceptible RAG1(-/-)LDLR(-/-) mice. The adoptive transfer of an NKT cell-enriched splenocyte population from Valpha14Jalpha18 T-cell receptor transgenic mice resulted in a 73% increase in aortic root lesion area compared with recipients of NKT cell-deficient splenocytes derived from CD1d(-/-) mice after 12 weeks of Western-type diet feeding. The total serum from hypercholesterolemic mice leads to a small but significant activation of Valpha14Jalpha18 T-cell receptor-expressing hybridoma line by dendritic cells that is CD1d-dependent. Therefore, these studies demonstrate that NKT cells are proatherogenic in the absence of exogenous stimulation, and this activity is likely associated with endogenous lipid antigens carried by lipoproteins in the circulation and perhaps also in the atherosclerotic plaque.
Full-text · Article · Apr 2007 · American Journal Of Pathology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) are thought to influence plasma lipid levels, atherosclerosis, and the immune system. In this study, we fed male LDL receptor deficient (LDLR(-/-)) mice and immune incompetent LDLR(-/-) RAG2(-/-) mice diets containing predominantly saturated fats (milk fat) or PUFA (safflower oil) to determine if the response to diet was influenced by immune status. Relative to milk fat diet, plasma lipid and VLDL levels in both the LDLR(-/-) and LDLR(-/-) RAG2(-/-) mice fed safflower oil diet were lower, suggesting that the primary effect of PUFA on plasma lipids was not due to its inhibition of the immune system. Neither diet nor immune status influenced hepatic triglyceride production and post-heparin lipase activity, suggesting that the differences in triglyceride levels are due to differences in rates of catabolism of triglyceride-rich lipoproteins. While both diets promoted atherogenesis, both aortic root and innominate artery atherosclerosis in LDLR(-/-) mice was less in safflower oil fed animals. In contrast, a site-specific effect of PUFA was observed in the immune incompetent LDLR(-/-) RAG2(-/-). In these mice, aortic root atherosclerosis, but not innominate artery atherosclerosis, was less in PUFA fed animal. These results suggest that PUFA and the immune system may influence innominate artery atherosclerosis by some overlapping mechanisms.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We sought to examine whether there is a site-specific effect on atherosclerosis of the absence of mature T and B cells caused by a recombination activating-gene deficiency in LDL receptor-deficient mice and whether this effect is influence by the extent of backcrossing to C57BL/6 mice.
Male mice were fed atherogenic diets for 3 months. In strain 1 mice, in which approximately 93% of the genes were from C57BL/6 mice, the absence of mature T and B cells led to a significant reduction in atherosclerosis in both the aortic sinus and the innominate artery. In strain 2 mice, in which approximately 99+% of the genes were from C57BL/6 mice, immune system deficiency led to a site-specific effect on atherosclerosis, with a reduction in atherosclerosis in the aortic sinus but not in the innominate artery, similar to previous results obtained with apolipoprotein E-/- mice. All of the immune system-incompetent mice had lower plasma total and VLDL cholesterol levels regardless of strain or diet, indicating that differences in lipid levels were unlikely to be responsible for these site-specific effects of immune system deficiency.
These results suggest that immune system deficiency has a site-specific effect on atherosclerosis that is sensitive to the genetic background of the mice.