[Truncated abstract] The low density lipoprotein receptor-related protein (LRP), a member of the low-density lipoprotein (LDL) receptor gene family is involved in numerous biological processes including lipoprotein metabolism. This thesis concerns investigations into some aspects of LRP metabolism/regulation and possible roles in coronary artery disease (CAD). Specific aims were: to investigate the association between polymorphisms in the LRP gene and in its associated protein, the lipoprotein receptor-associated protein (RAP), with the risk of CAD; to extensively examine the influence of the LRP exon 22 C200T polymorphism on lipid metabolism; to develop and characterise assays for the mRNA expression of LRP and 2 other genes relevant to lipid metabolism, the LDL receptor (LDLR), and HMG CoA reductase (HMGCR); and finally, to apply the latter techniques to studies on the influence of genetic variation in LRP, and dietary and drug interventions, on LRP, LDLR and HMGCR mRNA expression in nucleated blood cells from healthy human subjects. Six hundred CAD subjects and 700 similarly aged controls were genotyped for 8 LRP gene polymorphisms as well as for the RAP V311M polymorphism. ... In the final phase of my studies, I examined the influence of 4 weeks therapy with a cholesterol lowering drug, an HMGCR inhibitor, atorvastatin (20mg daily), on the mRNA expression of LDLR, LRP and HMGCR in human nucleated blood cells. Twelve normal Caucasian male subjects aged 49 ? 5 (SD) years were studied. Plasma total cholesterol and LDL-C decreased by averages of 29 % and 41 % after the 4 week period. This was accompanied by an elevation in LDLR mRNA expression by approximately 30 35 %. In contrast, there was no significant effect on LRP and HMGCR mRNA expression. In conclusion, the original findings in this thesis included: demonstration of a strong influence of the LRP exon 22 C200T polymorphism on coronary artery disease and LDLR expression, but without a clear effect on fasting or postprandial lipid levels; data on the biological variation in LDLR and LRP gene expression in nucleated blood cells from normal subjects; the influence of an oral fat load on the expression viii of these genes, finding that LDLR was significantly depressed; and finally, the observation that statin therapy upregulated LDLR in nucleated blood cells.
|Qualification||Doctor of Philosophy|
|Publication status||Unpublished - 2005|