Nutrition and Health Sciences, Department of


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Date of this Version



J Lipid Res. 2013 Oct; 54(10): 2708–2717.


Copyright © 2013 by the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc. Used by permission.


Obesity-associated low-grade chronic inflammation plays an important role in the development of insulin resistance. The membrane lipid transporter ATP-binding cassette transporter A1 (ABCA1) promotes formation of nascent HDL particles. ABCA1 also dampens macrophage inflammation by reducing cellular membrane cholesterol and lipid raft content. We tested the hypothesis that myeloid-specific ABCA1 deletion may exacerbate insulin resistance by increasing the obesity-associated chronic low-grade inflammation. Myeloid cell-specific ABCA1 knockout (MSKO) and wild-type (WT) mice developed obesity, insulin resistance, mild hypercholesterolemia, and hepatic steatosis to a similar extent with a 45% high-fat (HF) diet feeding or after crossing into the ob/ob background. Resident peritoneal macrophages and stromal vascular cells from obese MSKO mice accumulated significantly more cholesterol. Relative to chow, HF diet markedly induced macrophage infiltration and inflammatory cytokine expression to a similar extent in adipose tissue of WT and MSKO mice. Among proinflammatory cytokines examined, only IL-6 was highly upregulated in MSKO-ob/ob versus ob/ob mouse peritoneal macrophages, indicating a nonsignificant effect of myeloid ABCA1 deficiency on obesity-associated chronic inflammation. In conclusion, myeloid-specific ABCA1 deficiency does not exacerbate obesity-associated low-grade chronic inflammation and has minimal impact on the pathogenesis of insulin resistance in both HF diet-induced and genetically obese mouse models.