Insulin-like growth factor I reduces lipid oxidation and foam cell formation via downregulation of 12/15-lipoxygenase.

PMID 25549319


We have shown that insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-1) infusion in Apoe(-/-) mice decreased atherosclerotic plaque size and plaque macrophage and lipid content suggesting that IGF-1 suppressed formation of macrophage-derived foam cells. Since 12/15-lipoxygenase (12/15-LOX) plays an important role in OxLDL and foam cell formation, we hypothesized that IGF-1 downregulates 12/15-LOX, thereby suppressing lipid oxidation and foam cell formation. We found that IGF-1 decreased 12/15-LOX plaque immunopositivity and serum OxLDL levels in Apoe(-/-) mice. IGF-1 reduced 12/15-LOX protein and mRNA levels in cultured THP-1 macrophages and IGF-1 also decreased expression of STAT6 transcription factor. IGF-1 reduction in macrophage 12/15-LOX was mediated in part via a PI3 kinase- and STAT6-dependent transcriptional mechanism. IGF-1 suppressed THP-1 macrophage ability to oxidize lipids and form foam cells. IGF-1 downregulated 12/15-LOX in human blood-derived primary macrophages and IGF-1 decreased LDL oxidation induced by these cells. IGF-1 reduced LDL oxidation and formation of foam cells by wild type murine peritoneal macrophages, however these effects were completely blocked in 12/15-LOX-null macrophages suggesting that the ability of IGF-1 to reduce LDL oxidation and foam cells formation is dependent on its ability to downregulate 12/15-LOX. Overall our data demonstrate that IGF-1 reduces lipid oxidation and foam cell formation via downregulation of 12/15-LOX and this mechanism may play a major role in the anti-atherosclerotic effects of IGF-1.