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Herein, we characterize a generally applicable transformation of fatty acid epoxides by lipoxygenase (LOX) enzymes that results in the formation of a five-membered endoperoxide ring in the end product. We demonstrated this transformation using soybean LOX-1 in the metabolism of 15,16-epoxy-α-linolenic acid, and murine platelet-type 12-LOX and human 15-LOX-1 in the metabolism of 14,15-epoxyeicosatrienoic acid (14,15-EET). A detailed examination of the transformation of the two enantiomers of 15,16-epoxy-α-linolenic acid by soybean LOX-1 revealed that the expected primary product, a 13S-hydroperoxy-15,16-epoxide, underwent a nonenzymatic transformation in buffer into a new derivative that was purified by HPLC and identified by UV, LC-MS, and ¹H-NMR as a 13,15-endoperoxy-16-hydroxy-octadeca-9,11-dienoic acid. The configuration of the endoperoxide (cis or trans side chains) depended on the steric relationship of the new hydroperoxy moiety to the enantiomeric configuration of the fatty acid epoxide. The reaction mechanism involves intramolecular nucleophilic substitution (SNi) between the hydroperoxy (nucleophile) and epoxy group (electrophile). Equivalent transformations were documented in metabolism of the enantiomers of 14,15-EET by the two mammalian LOX enzymes, 15-LOX-1 and platelet-type 12-LOX. We conclude that this type of transformation could occur naturally with the co-occurrence of LOX and cytochrome P450 or peroxygenase enzymes, and it could also contribute to the complexity of products formed in the autoxidation reactions of polyunsaturated fatty acids.
Copyright © 2014 by the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.
Biological transformations of polyunsaturated fatty acids often lead to chemically unstable products, such as the prostaglandin endoperoxides and leukotriene A(4) epoxide of mammalian biology and the allene epoxides of plants. Here, we report on the enzymatic production of a fatty acid containing a highly strained bicyclic four-carbon ring, a moiety known previously only as a model compound for mechanistic studies in chemistry. Starting from linolenic acid (C18.3omega3), a dual function protein from the cyanobacterium Anabaena PCC 7120 forms 9R-hydroperoxy-C18.3omega3 in a lipoxygenase domain, then a catalase-related domain converts the 9R-hydroperoxide to two unstable allylic epoxides. We isolated and identified the major product as 9R,10R-epoxy-11trans-C18.1 containing a bicyclo[1.1.0]butyl ring on carbons 13-16, and the minor product as 9R,10R-epoxy-11trans,13trans,15cis-C18.omega3, an epoxide of the leukotriene A type. Synthesis of both epoxides can be understood by initial transformation of the hydroperoxide to an epoxy allylic carbocation. Rearrangement to an intermediate bicyclobutonium ion followed by deprotonation gives the bicyclobutane fatty acid. This enzymatic reaction has no parallel in aqueous or organic solvent, where ring-opened cyclopropanes, cyclobutanes, and homoallyl products are formed. Given the capability shown here for enzymatic formation of the highly strained and unstable bicyclobutane, our findings suggest that other transformations involving carbocation rearrangement, in both chemistry and biology, should be examined for the production of the high energy bicyclobutanes.
The cytotoxic aldehydes 4-hydroxynonenal, 4-hydroperoxynonenal (4-HPNE), and 4-oxononenal are formed during lipid peroxidation via oxidative transformation of the hydroxy or hydroperoxy precursor fatty acids, respectively. The mechanism of the carbon chain cleavage reaction leading to the aldehyde fragments is not known, but Hock-cleavage of a suitable dihydroperoxide derivative was implicated to account for the fragmentation [Schneider, C., Tallman, K.A., Porter, N.A., and Brash, A.R. (2001) Two Distinct Pathways of Formation of 4-Hydroxynonenal. Mechanisms of Nonenzymatic Transformation of the 9- and 13-Hydroperoxides of Linoleic Acid to 4-Hydroxyalkenals, J. Biol. Chem. 275, 20831-20838]. Both 8,13- and 10,13-dihydroperoxyoctadecadienoic acids (diHPODE) could serve as precursors in a Hock-cleavage leading to 4-HPNE via two different pathways. Here, we synthesized diastereomeric 9,12-, 10,12-, and 10,13-diHPODE using singlet oxidation of linoleic acid. 8,13-Dihydroperoxyoctadecatrienoic acid was synthesized by vitamin E-controlled autoxidation of gamma-linolenic acid followed by reaction with soybean lipoxygenase. The transformation of these potential precursors to 4-HPNE was studied under conditions of autoxidation, hematin-, and acid-catalysis. In contrast to 9- or 13-HPODE, neither of the dihydroperoxides formed 4-HPNE on autoxidation (lipid film, 37 degrees C), regardless of whether the free acid or the methyl ester derivative was used. Acid treatment of 10,13-diHPODE led to the expected formation of 4-HPNE as a significant product, in accord with a Hock-type cleavage reaction. We conclude that, although the suppression of 4-H(P)NE formation from monohydroperoxides by alpha-tocopherol indicates peroxyl radical reactions in the major route of carbon chain cleavage, the dihydroperoxides previously implicated are not intermediates in the autoxidative transformation of monohydroperoxy fatty acids to 4-HPNE and related aldehydes.
BACKGROUND - High dietary intake of linolenic acid is associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease mortality. However, little is known about the association between linolenic acid and subclinical atherosclerosis.
METHODS AND RESULTS - To examine the association between dietary linolenic acid measured by food frequency questionnaire and calcified atherosclerotic plaque in the coronary arteries (CAC) measured by cardiac CT, we studied 2004 white participants of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) Family Heart Study aged 32 to 93 years. The presence of CAC was defined on the basis of total CAC score of > or =100. We used generalized estimating equations to estimate odds ratios for the presence of CAC across quintiles of linolenic acid. The average consumption of dietary linolenic acid was 0.82+/-0.36 g/d for men and 0.69+/-0.29 g/d for women. From the lowest to the highest quintile of linolenic acid, adjusted odds ratios (95% CI) for the presence of CAC were 1.0 (reference), 0.61 (0.42 to 0.88), 0.55 (0.35 to 0.84), 0.57 (0.37 to 0.88), and 0.35 (0.22 to 0.55), respectively (P for trend <0.0001), after we controlled for age, gender, education, family risk group, smoking, fruit and vegetable intake, history of coronary artery disease, hypertension, diabetes mellitus, and statin use. When linolenic acid was used as a continuous variable, the multivariate adjusted odds ratio was 0.38 (95% CI, 0.24 to 0.46) per gram of linolenic acid intake. Use of different cut points for CAC score yielded similar results.
CONCLUSIONS - Consumption of dietary linolenic acid is associated with a lower prevalence of CAC in a dose-response fashion in white men and women.
13-Hydroperoxyoctadeca-9,11,15-trienoic acid was reacted with a catalytic amount of 5,10,15,20-tetraphenyl-21H,23H-porphyrin iron(III) chloride in dichloromethane containing 2,4,6-tri-tert-butylphenol. The principal products were identified as 13-oxooctadeca-9,11,15-trienoic acid, 13-oxotrideca-9,11-dienoic acid, and a series of isomeric epoxyaryl ethers [9-(2,4,6-tri-tert-butylphenoxy)-12,13-epoxyoctadec-10-enoic acids and 11-(2,4,6-tri-tert-butylphenoxy)-12,13-epoxyoctadec-9-enoic acids]. The epoxyaryl ethers are coupling products of 2,4,6-tri-tert-butylphenoxyl radical and an epoxyallylic radical formed by cyclization of an intermediate alkoxyl radical. The high yield of epoxyaryl ethers relative to 13-oxotrideca-9,11-dienoic acid suggests the equilibrium between alkoxyl radical and epoxyallylic radical lies predominantly toward epoxyallylic radical. This cyclization appears to be a key step in the amplification of lipid peroxidation by polyunsaturated fatty acid hydroperoxides.
cis-12-Oxophytodienoic acid (cis-12-oxo-PDA) is a C18 cyclopentenone formed from the 13-(S)-hydroperoxide of linolenic acid in flaxseed and other plant tissues. Although the structure of cis-12-oxo-PDA is well established, the absolute configuration of the side chains has not been determined. We have now measured this important parameter by two independent approaches. The CD spectrum of freshly prepared cis-12-oxo-PDA showed no deviations from base line--implying that the product is racemic. This conclusion was checked by a high-pressure liquid chromatography (HPLC) method capable of resolving the enantiomers; cis-12-oxo-PDA was reduced to two saturated hydroxy analogues which were each converted to (-)-menthoxycarbonyl diastereomers and analyzed by HPLC. Each epimer was resolved as two peaks of equal area, thus confirming that their cis-12-oxo-PDA parent is a racemic mixture, enantiomeric at the ring junctures. We propose that the biosynthesis of racemic cis-12-oxo-PDA proceeds by dehydration of the 13(S)-hydroperoxide to an allene oxide. A major fate of the allene oxide is hydrolysis to an alpha-ketol, which is always formed together with cis-12-oxo-PDA. The allene oxide also opens to a zwitterion, which undergoes charge delocalization to form a planar intermediate; this structure is the achiral precursor of the stable end product of pericyclic ring closure, viz., racemic cis-12-oxo-PDA.