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      Autophagy regulates cholesterol efflux from macrophage foam cells via lysosomal acid lipase.

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          Abstract

          The lipid droplet (LD) is the major site of cholesterol storage in macrophage foam cells and is a potential therapeutic target for the treatment of atherosclerosis. Cholesterol, stored as cholesteryl esters (CEs), is liberated from this organelle and delivered to cholesterol acceptors. The current paradigm attributes all cytoplasmic CE hydrolysis to the action of neutral CE hydrolases. Here, we demonstrate an important role for lysosomes in LD CE hydrolysis in cholesterol-loaded macrophages, in addition to that mediated by neutral hydrolases. Furthermore, we demonstrate that LDs are delivered to lysosomes via autophagy, where lysosomal acid lipase (LAL) acts to hydrolyze LD CE to generate free cholesterol mainly for ABCA1-dependent efflux; this process is specifically induced upon macrophage cholesterol loading. We conclude that, in macrophage foam cells, lysosomal hydrolysis contributes to the mobilization of LD-associated cholesterol for reverse cholesterol transport.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          Cell Metab
          Cell metabolism
          Elsevier BV
          1932-7420
          1550-4131
          Jun 08 2011
          : 13
          : 6
          Affiliations
          [1 ] University of Ottawa Heart Institute, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.
          Article
          S1550-4131(11)00181-1 NIHMS346363
          10.1016/j.cmet.2011.03.023
          3257518
          21641547
          2406a6cb-b580-44e1-87d9-7fd31103ccd5
          Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
          History

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