The LXR-Idol axis differentially regulates plasma LDL levels in primates and mice

Cell Metab. 2014 Nov 4;20(5):910-918. doi: 10.1016/j.cmet.2014.10.001. Epub 2014 Nov 4.


The LXR-regulated E3 ubiquitin ligase IDOL controls LDLR receptor stability independent of SREBP and PCSK9, but its relevance to plasma lipid levels is unknown. Here we demonstrate that the effects of the LXR-IDOL axis are both tissue and species specific. In mice, LXR agonist induces Idol transcript levels in peripheral tissues but not in liver, and does not change plasma LDL levels. Accordingly, Idol-deficient mice exhibit elevated LDLR protein levels in peripheral tissues, but not in the liver. By contrast, LXR activation in cynomolgus monkeys induces hepatic IDOL expression, reduces LDLR protein levels, and raises plasma LDL levels. Knockdown of IDOL in monkeys with an antisense oligonucleotide blunts the effect of LXR agonist on LDL levels. These results implicate IDOL as a modulator of plasma lipid levels in primates and support further investigation into IDOL inhibition as a potential strategy for LDL lowering in humans.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Cholesterol, LDL / blood*
  • Cholesterol, LDL / metabolism
  • Haplorhini
  • Humans
  • Liver / metabolism*
  • Liver X Receptors
  • Macaca fascicularis
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Orphan Nuclear Receptors / metabolism*
  • Receptors, LDL / metabolism
  • Signal Transduction*
  • Species Specificity
  • Ubiquitin-Protein Ligases / metabolism*


  • Cholesterol, LDL
  • Liver X Receptors
  • Orphan Nuclear Receptors
  • Receptors, LDL
  • MYLIP protein, human
  • Mylip protein, mouse
  • Ubiquitin-Protein Ligases