The effects of two fatty acids, oleic acid (OLA) and elaidic acid (ELA) on normal human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVEC) and non-rafts HUVEC were investigated in this study. The expression levels of inflammatory cytokines (ICAM-1, VCAM-1 and IL-6) were analyzed. Western blot was used to analyze the expression levels of inflammation-related proteins (NF-κB, ERK1/2) and toll-like receptors 4 (TLR4). The results showed that the levels of nuclear translocation of NF-κB p65 and phosphorylated ERK1/2 were significantly decreased only in non-lipid rafts cells pretreated with trans fatty acid (TFA). The expression of TLR4 in the ELA-treated normal cells was higher than that in non-lipid rafts HUVEC. When the lipid rafts was destroyed by methyl-β-cyclodextrin, the levels of nuclear translocation of NF-κB p65, phosphorylated ERK1/2 and TLR4 were decreased significantly. Therefore, lipid rafts may be involved in TFA induced-inflammation in HUVEC through blocking the inflammatory signal pathway. Lipid rafts might be a platform for specific receptors such as TLR4 for TFA to activate the pro-inflammation on cell membranes.
Keywords: ERK1/2; Inflammation; Lipid rafts; NF-kB; trans Fatty acids.