Arteriosclerosis, thrombosis, and vascular biology

Acipimox, an inhibitor of lipolysis, attenuates atherogenesis in LDLR-null mice treated with HIV protease inhibitor ritonavir.

PMID 19762785


The advent of HIV protease inhibitors has greatly extended the life span of AIDS patients. With an aging HIV(+) population, the cardiometabolic side effects of these drugs are becoming increasingly important clinical concerns. The purpose of this study was to test the hypothesis that inhibition of adipose lipolysis will retard atherogenic lesion development induced by the antiviral protease inhibitors. LDLR-null mice receiving ritonavir were compared with those receiving ritonavir plus lipolysis inhibitor acipimox or vehicle alone to determine how acipimox would affect ritonavir-induced atherogenesis. Intermittent high-fat high-cholesterol diet was used to facilitate optimal atheromatous lesion development. Drug effects were assessed as changes in aortic lesion score, plasma lipid and lipoprotein profile, body fat mass, and insulin-induced suppression of plasma fatty acid concentrations. Ritonavir increased aortic lesions, in association with decreased body fat mass, impaired antilipolysis action of insulin, and increased proatherogenic plasma lipoproteins. All these adverse effects were attenuated by cotreatment with acipimox. Our results provide the first direct evidence that supports the hypothesis that dysregulation of adipose lipolysis is an important contributor to the proatherogenic role of selected HIV protease inhibitors.

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A7856 Acipimox, ≥99% (TLC)