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N-acetyl cysteine suppresses the foam cell formation that is induced by oxidized low density lipoprotein via regulation of gene expression

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Abstract

Foam cells derived from macrophages have been implicated as markers of early stage atherosclerosis development. In this study, we found that N-acetyl cysteine (NAC), a well-known inhibitor of reactive oxygen species (ROS), decreased the generation of ROS and suppressed foam cell formation in the presence of oxidized low density lipoprotein through down-regulation of cluster of differentiation 36 expression. We investigated gene expression profiles in order to determine the effects of NAC on foam cell formation using a microarray analysis. The level of apolipoprotein E, which is involved in lipid efflux, was increased and the levels of the antioxidant genes glutathione peroxidase 1 and 3 were also increased. The expression levels of the oxidative stress response and the DNA repair genes were decreased. These results were confirmed using quantitative real-time PCR. Our results indicate that oxidative stress plays an important role in foam cell formation, and that regulation of oxidation using antioxidants is a potential therapeutic method for blocking atherosclerosis development.

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Acknowledgments

This work was supported by the Intramural Research Grants Program (2011) from the Eulji University and the Disease Network Research Program (No. 2010-0020615) from the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant, funded by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (MEST), Republic of Korea.

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The authors declare no conflict of interest.

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Correspondence to Jesang Ko.

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Sung, H.J., Kim, J., Kim, Y. et al. N-acetyl cysteine suppresses the foam cell formation that is induced by oxidized low density lipoprotein via regulation of gene expression. Mol Biol Rep 39, 3001–3007 (2012). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11033-011-1062-1

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s11033-011-1062-1

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