Effects of sex on formation and properties of plasma very low density lipoprotein in vivo

Carlos Soler-Argilaga, Abraham Danon, Henry G. Wilcox, Murray Heimberg

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20 Scopus citations


The concentration and composition of the very low density lipoprotein (VLDL) lipids and the behavior of the VLDL in a density gradient in the zonal ultracentrifuge were examined in plasma obtained from normal fed male and female rats before and after intravenous injection of Triton WR-1339. Concentration of lipids in plasma VLDL of female rats was about half that of male animals. Following injection with Triton WR-1339, the concentration of VLDL lipids was higher in female rats (triacylglycerol) or similar (phospholipid, cholesterol, and cholesteryl esters) in both sexes. Female rats secreted much more VLDL triacylglycerol into the plasma compartment than did the male animals under the same experimental conditions. No differences were observed in lipid composition of the VLDL or in the position of the VLDL in the zonal rotor after ultracentrifugation in a density gradient of the lipoprotein from plasma of normal male and female rats before treatment with the detergent. However, after treatment with Triton, a higher proportion of the VLDL particles isolated from plasma of female rats displayed a more rapid rate-zonal flotation in the ultracentrifuge than did the VLDL produced by the male. The VLDL secreted by female rats contained fewer moles of phospholipid and free sterol per mol triacylglycerol than did the VLDL secreted by male animals under identical experimental conditions. The molar ratio of free cholesterol: cholesteryl ester in the VLDL secreted after treatment with Triton increased in both male and female rats. Simultaneously, the content of arachidonic acid in phospholipid of VLDL increased with a concomitant decrease in cholesteryl ester. These changes in fatty acid composition suggest that the inhibitory effect of Triton on lecithin-cholesterol acyl transferase activity affects the exchange of lipids between VLDL and high density lipoprotein. It can be concluded from the data reported here that sex influences the concentration of plasma lipids in vivo and the output and properties of the VLDL.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)517-525
Number of pages9
Issue number7
StatePublished - 1 Jul 1976
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Cell Biology


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