A regulatory role of LPCAT1 in the synthesis of inflammatory lipids, PAF and LPC, in the retina of diabetic mice

Long Cheng, Xiao Han, Yuguang Shi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


Platelet-activating factor (PAF) and lysophosphatidylcholine (LPC) are potent inflammatory lipids. Elevated levels of PAF and LPC are associated with the onset of diabetic retinopathy and neurodegeneration. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying such defects remain elusive. LPCAT1 is a newly reported lysophospholipid acyl-transferase implicated in the anti-inflammatory response by its role in conversion of LPC to PC. Intriguingly, the LPCAT1 enzyme also catalyzes the synthesis of PAF from lyso-PAF with use of acetyl-CoA as a substrate. The present studies investigated regulatory roles of LPCAT1 in the synthesis of inflammatory lipids during the onset of diabetes. Our work shows that LPCAT1 plays an important role in the inactivation of PAF by catalyzing the synthesis of alkyl-PC, an inactivated form of PAF with use of acyl-CoA and lyso-PAF as substrates. In support of a role of LPCAT1 in anti-inflammatory responses in diabetic retinopathy, LPCAT1 is most abundantly expressed in the retina. Moreover, LPCAT1 mRNA levels and acyl-transferase activity toward lyso-PAF and LPC were significantly downregulated in retina and brain tissues in response to the onset of diabetes in Ins2Akita and db/db mice, mouse models of type 1 and type 2 diabetes, respectively. Conversely, treatment of db/db mice with rosiglitazone, an antidiabetes compound, significantly upregulated LPCAT1 mRNA levels concurrently with increased acyltransferase activity in the retina and brain. Collectively, these findings identified a novel regulatory role of LPCAT1 in catalyzing the inactivation of inflammatory lipids in the retina of diabetic mice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)E1276-E1282
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Endocrinology and Metabolism
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Diabetic retinopathy
  • Lysophosphatidylcholine
  • Lysophosphatidylcholine acyltransferase
  • Platelet-activating factor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology (medical)
  • Physiology
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism


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