Lipids in the body are transported via lipoproteins that are nanoparticles comprised of lipids and amphipathic proteins termed apolipoproteins. This family of lipid surface-binding proteins is over-represented in human amyloid diseases. In particular, all major proteins of high-density lipoproteins (HDL), including apoA-I, apoA-II and serum amyloid A, can cause systemic amyloidoses in humans upon protein mutations, post-translational modifications or overproduction. Here, we begin to explore how the HDL lipid composition influences amyloid deposition by apoA-I and related proteins. First, we summarize the evidence that, in contrast to lipoproteins that are stabilized by kinetic barriers, free apolipoproteins are labile to misfolding and proteolysis. Next, we report original biochemical and biophysical studies showing that increase in triglyceride content in the core of plasma or reconstituted HDL destabilizes the lipoprotein assembly, making it more labile to various perturbations (oxidation, thermal and chemical denaturation and enzymatic hydrolysis), and promotes apoA-I release in a lipid-poor/free aggregation-prone form. Together, the results suggest that decreasing plasma levels of triglycerides will shift the dynamic equilibrium from the lipid-poor/free (labile) to the HDL-bound (protected) apolipoprotein state, thereby decreasing the generation of the protein precursor of amyloid. This prompts us to propose that triglyceride-lowering therapies may provide a promising strategy to alleviate amyloid diseases caused by the deposition of HDL proteins.
Jayaraman, S., Sánchez-Quesada, J. L., & Gursky, O. (2017). Triglyceride increase in the core of high-density lipoproteins augments apolipoprotein dissociation from the surface: Potential implications for treatment of apolipoprotein deposition diseases. Biochimica et Biophysica Acta - Molecular Basis of Disease, 1863(1), 200–210. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bbadis.2016.10.010