Studies suggest that inflammation impairs reverse cholesterol transport (RCT). We investigated whether serum amyloid A (SAA) contributes to this impairment using an established macrophage-to-feces RCT model. Wild-type (WT) mice and mice deficient in SAA1.1 and SAA2.1 (SAAKO) were injected intraperitoneally with 3H-cholesterol-labeled J774 macrophages 4 hr after administration of LPS or buffered saline. 3H-cholesterol in plasma 4 hr after macrophage injection was significantly reduced in both WT and SAAKO mice injected with LPS, but this was not associated with a reduced capacity of serum from LPS-injected mice to promote macrophage cholesterol efflux in vitro. Hepatic accumulation of 3H-cholesterol was unaltered in either WT or SAAKO mice by LPS treatment. Radioactivity present in bile and feces of LPS-injected WT mice 24 hr after macrophage injection was reduced by 36% (P < 0.05) and 80% (P < 0.001), respectively. In contrast, in SAAKO mice, LPS did not significantly reduce macrophage-derived 3H-cholesterol in bile, and fecal excretion was reduced by only 45% (P < 0.05). Injection of cholesterol-loaded allogeneic J774 cells, but not syngeneic bone-marrow-derived macrophages, transiently induced SAA in C57BL/6 mice. Our study confirms reports that acute inflammation impairs steps in the RCT pathway and establishes that SAA plays only a minor role in this impairment.

Document Type


Publication Date


Notes/Citation Information

Published in Journal of Lipids, v. 2013, article ID 283486, p. 1-11.

Copyright © 2013 Maria C. de Beer et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)