Natural killer T cells are required for lipopolysaccharide-mediated enhancement of atherosclerosis in apolipoprotein E-deficient mice.

Andoh Y, Ogura H, Satoh M, Shimano K, Okuno H, Fujii S, Ishimori N, Eshima K, Tamauchi H, Otani T, Nakai Y, Van Kaer L, Tsutsui H, Onoé K, Iwabuchi K
Immunobiology. 2013 218 (4): 561-9

PMID: 22954709 · PMCID: PMC3535521 · DOI:10.1016/j.imbio.2012.07.022

Lipopolysaccharide (LPS) has been shown to accelerate atherosclerosis and to increase the prevalence of IL-4-producing natural killer T (NKT) cells in various tissues. However, the role of NKT cells in the development of LPS-induced atherosclerotic lesions has not been fully tested in NKT cell-deficient mice. Here, we examined the lesion development in apolipoprotein E knockout (apoE-KO) mice and apoE-KO mice on an NKT cell-deficient, CD1d knockout (CD1d-KO) background (apoE-CD1d double knockout; DKO). LPS (0.5 μg/g body weight/wk) or phosphate-buffered saline (PBS) was intraperitoneally administered to apoE-KO and DKO mice (8-wk old) for 5 wk and atherosclerotic lesion areas were quantified thereafter. Consistent with prior reports, NKT cell-deficient DKO mice showed milder atherosclerotic lesions than apoE-KO mice. Notably, LPS administration significantly increased the lesion size in apoE-KO, but not in DKO mice, compared to PBS controls. Our findings suggest that LPS, and possibly LPS-producing bacteria, aggravate the development of atherosclerosis primarily through NKT cell activation and subsequent collaboration with NK cells.

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MeSH Terms (9)

Animals Antigens, CD1d Apolipoproteins E Atherosclerosis Lipopolysaccharides Lymphocyte Activation Mice Mice, Knockout Natural Killer T-Cells

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