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Apolipoprotein M: Research progress, regulation and metabolic functions (Review)

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Apolipoprotein┬áM (ApoM) is a novel lipoprotein-associated plasma protein of the apolipoprotein family. It is predominantly enriched in highdensity lipoprotein (HDL), and is also present in small quantities in lowdensity lipoprotein (LDL) and in very lowdensity lipoprotein. Transgenic animal experiments have suggested that ApoM can be transformed into various lipoproteins and may be involved in lipoprotein metabolism. ApoM has five subtypes, however, their biological functions remain to be elucidated. The αhelix, formed by ApoM through hydrophobic signal peptides, is anchored to the phospholipid monomolecular layers of HDL. Hydrophobic domains can associate with small lipophilic ligands and perform biological functions. ApoM may affect HDL metabolism and exhibit antiatherosclerotic functions. Human HDL, containing ApoM subfractions, can protect LDL from oxidation and regulate cholesterol efflux more effectively than HDL without ApoM. Therefore, it is highly correlated with plasma cholesterol levels in the human body. Although previous studies have reported no difference in ApoM between groups of patients with coronary heart disease (CHD) and a normal control groups, the antiatherosclerotic effect of ApoM is evident. ApoM is highly expressed in renal proximal tubule cells and is secreted into the urine in tubule cells. However, it is usually reabsorbed by giantinassociated proteins in a process, which is also affected in kidney disease. In addition to liver and kidney cells, low expression levels of ApoM occur in the intestinal tract and are associated with lymph node metastasis of colorectal cancer. ApoM gene polymorphism is associated with CHD, diabetes and other immuneassociated diseases. Investigations into the gene regulation of ApoM may assist in further clarifying the role of ApoM in blood glucose and lipid metabolism. Genetic modification of the mouse ApoM gene is an essential technique to investigate the gene expression and regulation of ApoM, and to clarify the potential roles of ApoM in lipoprotein metabolism, atherosclerosis, diabetes and renal diseases.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Wannan Medical College, Wuhu, Anhui 241001, P.R. China 2: Department of Endocrinology and Genetic Metabolism, Yijishan Hospital of Wannan Medical College, Wuhu, Anhui 241002, P.R. China

Publication date: August 1, 2015

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  • Molecular Medicine Reports is a monthly, peer-reviewed journal available in print and online, that includes studies devoted to molecular medicine, underscoring aspects including pharmacology, pathology, genetics, neurosciences, infectious diseases, molecular cardiology and molecular surgery. In vitro and in vivo studies of experimental model systems pertaining to the mechanisms of a variety of diseases offer researchers the necessary tools and knowledge with which to aid the diagnosis and treatment of human diseases.
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