Mammalian acyl-CoA:cholesterol acyltransferases

Biochim Biophys Acta. 2000 Dec 15;1529(1-3):142-54. doi: 10.1016/s1388-1981(00)00144-x.


Cholesterol, the chief sterol found in vertebrates, exists both as a free sterol and as a component of cholesterol esters, which are synthesized by acyl-CoA:cholesterol acyltransferase (ACAT) enzymes. Considerable knowledge concerning cholesterol ester metabolism has accumulated during the past century. However, rapid advances have occurred in the past 7 years since the cloning of an ACAT gene, including the discovery that two ACATs function in mammalian biology. A clearer picture of the functions of ACAT enzymes in cellular cholesterol metabolism and physiologic processes is now emerging. These insights may have relevance for the development of ACAT inhibitors for treating hypercholesterolemia or atherosclerosis in humans.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Historical Article
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Arteriosclerosis / prevention & control
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Cholesterol Esters / biosynthesis*
  • Cholesterol Esters / history
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • DNA, Complementary / analysis
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Drug Design
  • Endoplasmic Reticulum / enzymology
  • Enzyme Inhibitors / classification
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Enzymologic
  • History, 19th Century
  • History, 20th Century
  • Isoenzymes / genetics
  • Microsomes / enzymology
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Molecular Structure
  • RNA, Messenger / analysis
  • Sterol O-Acyltransferase / genetics
  • Sterol O-Acyltransferase / history
  • Sterol O-Acyltransferase / metabolism*


  • Cholesterol Esters
  • DNA, Complementary
  • Enzyme Inhibitors
  • Isoenzymes
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Sterol O-Acyltransferase