Attenuation of diet-induced atherosclerosis in rabbits with a highly selective 15-lipoxygenase inhibitor lacking significant antioxidant properties

Br J Pharmacol. 1997 Apr;120(7):1199-206. doi: 10.1038/sj.bjp.0701007.


1. 15-Lipoxygenase (15-LO) has been implicated in the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis because of its localization in lesions and the many biological activities exhibited by its products. To provide further evidence for a role of 15-LO, the effects of PD 146176 on the development of atherosclerosis in cholesterol-fed rabbits were assessed. This novel drug is a specific inhibitor of the enzyme in vitro and lacks significant non specific antioxidant properties. 2. PD 146176 inhibited rabbit reticulocyte 15-LO through a mixed noncompetitive mode with a Ki of 197 nM. The drug had minimal effects on either copper or 2,2'-azobis(2-amidinopropane)hydrochloride (ABAP) induced oxidation of LDL except at concentrations 2 orders higher than the Ki. 3. Control New Zealand rabbits were fed a high-fat diet containing 0.25% wt./wt. cholesterol; treated animals received inhibitor in this diet (175 mg kg-1, b.i.d.). Plasma concentrations of inhibitor were similar to the estimated Ki (197 nM). During the 12 week study, there were no significant differences in weight gain haematocrit, plasma total cholesterol concentrations, or distribution of lipoprotein cholesterol. 4. The drug plasma concentrations achieved in vivo did not inhibit low-density lipoprotein (LDL) oxidation in vitro. Furthermore, LDL isolated from PD 146176-treated animals was as susceptible as that from controls to oxidation ex vivo by either copper or ABAP. 5. PD 146176 was very effective in suppressing atherogenesis, especially in the aortic arch where lesion coverage diminished from 15 +/- 4 to 0% (P < 0.02); esterified cholesterol content was reduced from 2.1 +/- 0.7 to 0 micrograms mg-1 (P < 0.02) in this region. Immunostainable lipid-laden macrophages present in aortic intima of control animals were totally absent in the drug-treated group. 6. Results of these studies are consistent with a role for 15-LO in atherogenesis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antioxidants / pharmacology
  • Arteriosclerosis / blood
  • Arteriosclerosis / drug therapy*
  • Arteriosclerosis / etiology
  • Diet*
  • Fluorenes / pharmacology*
  • Lipids / blood
  • Lipoproteins / blood
  • Lipoxygenase Inhibitors* / pharmacology*
  • Rabbits


  • 6,11-dihydro-5-thia-11-aza-benzo(a)-fluorene
  • Antioxidants
  • Fluorenes
  • Lipids
  • Lipoproteins
  • Lipoxygenase Inhibitors