Overexpression of Prdx6 reduces H2O2 but does not prevent diet-induced atherosclerosis in the aortic root.

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Free Radic Biol Med 2003 Nov; 35(9):1110-20.


The mammalian 1-Cys peroxiredoxin (Prdx6) is a unique member of the peroxiredoxin family of proteins capable of protecting cells from metal-catalyzed oxidative damage. We recently identified Prdx6 as a candidate for the quantitative trait locus Ath1, a gene responsible for a difference in diet-induced atherosclerosis susceptibility in mice. To investigate the role of Prdx6 in atherosclerosis, we generated transgenic mice that overexpress the Prdx6 allele from the Ath1-resistant 129/SvJ strain on an Ath1-susceptible C57BL/6J background. These mice expressed significantly elevated levels of Prdx6 mRNA and protein in multiple tissues including liver, aorta, and peritoneal macrophages, which accumulated significantly lower levels of hydrogen peroxide, revealing an enhanced antioxidant activity in these mice. However, overexpression of Prdx6 had no protective effect on LDL oxidation in vitro, and transgenic mice fed an atherogenic diet for 10 weeks did not possess an increased resistance to atherosclerosis nor did they maintain the high prediet plasma HDL levels consistent with the Ath1-resistant phenotype. In addition, the Prdx6 allele from the susceptible strain was shown to have a higher antioxidant activity than that of the resistant strains. These data suggest that the increased peroxidase activity attributable to Prdx6 overexpression in transgenic mice is not sufficient to protect mice from atherosclerosis, and that Prdx6 is not likely to be the gene underlying Ath1.