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Dietary cholesterol is essential to mast cell activation and associated obesity and diabetes in mice.

Biochimica et biophysica acta. Molecular basis of disease (2019-04-13)
Xian Zhang, Qin Huang, Xin Wang, Zhiyong Deng, Jie Li, Xiang Yan, Matti Jauhiainen, Jari Metso, Peter Libby, Jian Liu, Guo-Ping Shi

Mast cell (MC) deficiency in KitW-sh/W-sh mice and inhibition with disodium chromoglycate (DSCG) or ketotifen reduced obesity and diabetes in mice on a high-cholesterol (1.25%) Western diet. Yet, Kit-independent MC-deficient mice and mice treated with DSCG disproved MC function in obesity and diabetes when mice are fed a high-fat diet (HFD) that contains no cholesterol. This study reproduced the obesity and diabetes inhibitory activities of DSCG and ketotifen from mice on a Western diet. Yet, such inhibitory effects were diminished in mice on the HFD. DSCG and ketotifen MC inhibitory activities were recovered from mice on the HFD supplemented with the same amount of cholesterol (1.25%) as that in the Western diet. DSCG and ketotifen effectively blunted the high-cholesterol diet-induced elevations of blood histamine and adipose tissue MC degranulation. Pearson's correlation test demonstrated significant and positive correlations between plasma histamine and total cholesterol or low-density lipoprotein-cholesterol (LDL). In cultured bone marrow-derived MCs, plasma from mice following a Western diet or a cholesterol-supplemented HFD, but not those from HFD-fed mice, induced MC degranulation and the release of β-hexosaminidase, histamine, and serotonin. IgE, LDL, very low-density lipoprotein, and high-density lipoprotein also induced MC activation, which can be inhibited by DSCG and ketotifen depending on the doses and types of MC inhibitors and cholesterol, and also the MC granule molecules of interest. DSCG or ketotifen lost their activities in inhibiting LDL-induced activation of MCs from LDL receptor-deficient mice. These results indicate that dietary cholesterol critically influences the function of mouse MCs.