Reduced lipolysis of large apo E-poor very-low-density lipoprotein subfractions from type IV hypertriglyceridemic subjects in vitro and in vivo

Metabolism. 1993 Jan;42(1):105-15. doi: 10.1016/0026-0495(93)90180-v.


Heparin-Sepharose chromatography was used to separate Sf 60-400 very-low-density lipoproteins (VLDL) from type IV hypertriglyceridemic subjects into apolipoprotein (apo) E-poor and apo E-rich subfractions. Since we have previously demonstrated that the apo E-poor fraction accumulates in plasma of type IV subjects, the aim of the present studies was to determine whether it was resistant to lipolysis in comparison to the apo E-rich fraction. The apo E-rich fraction was found to be 30% more effective than the apo E-poor fraction at competing with a glycerol tri[1-14C]oleate emulsion for in vitro lipolysis by normolipidemic human post-heparin plasma (P < .01), when assayed under conditions in which both lipoprotein lipase (LPL) and hepatic triglyceride lipase (HTGL) were active. Similar results were obtained when bovine milk LPL was used as the source of lipolytic activity (P < .025 for apo E-rich relative to apo E-poor VLDL), while neither fraction competed effectively with the synthetic substrate for lipolysis by HTGL only. When equal amounts of triglyceride from VLDL subfractions were incubated with bovine milk LPL, 25% more free fatty acid was released from the apo E-rich fraction than from the apo E-poor fraction (P < .025). The effects of heparin-induced lipolysis in vivo in type IV subjects on the relative amounts and composition of these VLDL subfractions were also assessed. Heparin infusion was associated with a 50% reduction in plasma Sf 60-400 VLDL triglyceride concentration. In addition, heparin-induced lipolysis resulted in a marked decrease in the relative amount of apo E-rich VLDL, while the relative amount of apo E-poor VLDL was increased. These results demonstrate that the apo E-poor VLDL subfraction is resistant to lipolysis by LPL relative to its apo E-rich counterpart, suggesting that reduced lipolytic efficiency may contribute to its observed accumulation in plasma of type IV subjects.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Apolipoproteins E / blood*
  • Cattle
  • Chemical Fractionation
  • Heparin / pharmacology
  • Humans
  • Hypertriglyceridemia / blood*
  • Lipase / blood
  • Lipolysis*
  • Lipoprotein Lipase / metabolism
  • Lipoproteins, VLDL / blood*
  • Lipoproteins, VLDL / pharmacology
  • Liver / enzymology
  • Milk / enzymology
  • Reference Values
  • Triolein / metabolism


  • Apolipoproteins E
  • Lipoproteins, VLDL
  • Triolein
  • Heparin
  • Lipase
  • Lipoprotein Lipase