Palmitate and oleate have distinct effects on the inflammatory phenotype of human endothelial cells

J. Ciapaite, J. van Bezu, G. van Eikenhorst, S.J. Bakker, T. Teerlink, M. Diamant, R.J. Heine, K. Krab, H.V. Westerhoff, C.G. Schalkwijk

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Free fatty acids may create a state of continuous and progressive damaging to the vascular wall manifested by endothelial dysfunction. In this study we determine the mechanisms by which fatty acids palmitate (C16:0) and oleate (C18:1) affect intracellular long chain acyl-CoA (LCAC) content, energy metabolism, cell survival and proliferation and activation of NF-kappaB in cultured endothelial cells. A 48-h exposure of human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVEC) to 0.5 mM palmitate or 0.5 mM oleate increased total long chain acyl-CoA (LCAC) content 1.7 and 2 fold, respectively and decreased ATP(total)/ADP(total) ratio by 26+/-5% (mean+/-SEM) and 15+/-2%, respectively, which was prevented by the acyl-CoA synthetase inhibitor triacsin C. Furthermore, palmitate inhibited cell proliferation by 34+/-5%, while oleate stimulated it by 12+/-2%. alpha-Tocopherol fully and triacsin C partially abolished the effect of palmitate on cell proliferation. Palmitate and oleate increased caspase-3 activity 3.2 and 1.4 fold, respectively. Palmitate-induced caspase-3 activation was prevented by triacsin C and slightly reduced by alpha-tocopherol and by the de novo ceramide synthesis inhibitor fumonisin B(1). Both fatty acids induced antioxidant-sensitive nuclear translocation of NF-kappaB after 72 h, but not after 48 h. In conclusion, we showed that fatty acids influence different aspects of HUVEC function resulting in amongst other activation of apoptotic and inflammatory pathways. Our results indicate that the effects depend on the fatty acid type and may be related to accumulation of LCAC.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)147-154
JournalBiochimica et Biophysica Acta-Molecular and Cell Biology of Lipids
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2007

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