Neil3-dependent base excision repair regulates lipid metabolism and prevents atherosclerosis in Apoe-deficient mice

Tonje Skarpengland, Sverre Holm, Katja Scheffler, Ida Gregersen, Tuva B. Dahl, Rajikala Suganthan, Filip M. Segers, Ingunn Ostlie, Jeroen J. T. Otten, Luisa Luna, Daniel F. J. Ketelhuth, Anna M. Lundberg, Christine G. Neurauter, Gunn Hildrestrand, Mona Skjelland, Bodil Bjorndal, Asbjorn M. Svardal, Per O. Iversen, Ulf Hedin, Stale NygardOle K. Olstad, Kirsten Krohg-Sorensen, Geir Slupphaug, Lars Eide, Anna Kusnierczyk, Lasse Folkersen, Thor Ueland, Rolf K. Berge, Goran K. Hansson, Erik A. L. Biessen, Bente Halvorsen*, Magnar Bjoras, Pal Aukrust

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Increasing evidence suggests that oxidative DNA damage accumulates in atherosclerosis. Recently, we showed that a genetic variant in the human DNA repair enzyme NEIL3 was associated with increased risk of myocardial infarction. Here, we explored the role of Neil3/NEIL3 in atherogenesis by both clinical and experimental approaches. Human carotid plaques revealed increased NEIL3 mRNA expression which significantly correlated with mRNA levels of the macrophage marker CD68. Apoe(-/-) Neil3(-/-) mice on high-fat diet showed accelerated plaque formation as compared to Apoe(-/-) mice, reflecting an atherogenic lipid profile, increased hepatic triglyceride levels and attenuated macrophage cholesterol efflux capacity. Apoe(-/-) Neil3(-/-) mice showed marked alterations in several pathways affecting hepatic lipid metabolism, but no genotypic alterations in genome integrity or genome-wide accumulation of oxidative DNA damage. These results suggest a novel role for the DNA glycosylase Neil3 in atherogenesis in balancing lipid metabolism and macrophage function, potentially independently of genome-wide canonical base excision repair of oxidative DNA damage.
Original languageEnglish
Article number28337
JournalScientific Reports
Publication statusPublished - 22 Jun 2016


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