The ubiquitin-proteasome system (UPS) is involved in the removal of damaged proteins and the activation of transcription factors, such as nuclear-factor-kappaB. Recent reports, however, questioned the functional activity of the UPS under conditions of increased oxidative stress, such as experimental hypercholesterolemia, which was the objective of our study. Pigs were placed on a normal chow diet (N) or on a hypercholesterolemic diet without (HC) or with vitamin C and E supplementation (HC+VIT) for 12 weeks. Compared with N, plasma concentration of total cholesterol increased in both HC and HC+VIT [76 +/- 21 vs. 400 +/- 148 (P<0.05) and 329 +/- 102 (P<0.05) mg/dL], whereas increase in lipid peroxidation, as assessed by LDL-malondialdehyde plasma concentration, was found in HC but not in HC+VIT [6.6 +/- 0.7 vs. 8.5 +/- 0.3 (P<0.05) and 6.8 +/- 0.7 nmol/mg protein]. In comparison with N, the level of ubiquitin conjugates in the coronary artery, as assessed by immunoblotting, increased by 42% in HC but not in HC+VIT and was localized predominantly to media vascular smooth muscle cells by immunostaining. There was no difference in proteasome proteolytic activity among the study groups. These results demonstrate that the UPS is functionally active in early atherogenesis despite increase in oxidative stress with important repercussions in the pathophysiology and therapy of cardiovascular diseases.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||3|
|Journal||The FASEB journal : official publication of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology|
|State||Published - Sep 2003|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology