Sesamol reduces the atherogenicity of electronegative L5 LDL in vivo and in vitro

Wei Yu Chen, Fang Yu Chen, An Sheng Lee, Kuan Hsiang Ting, Chia Ming Chang, Jing Fang Hsu, Wei Shine Lee, Joen Rong Sheu, Chu Huang Chen, Ming Yi Shen

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28 Citations (Scopus)


Highly electronegative low-density lipoprotein (LDL) L5 induces endothelial cell (EC) apoptosis, which leads to the development of atherosclerosis. We examined the effects of sesamol (1), a natural organic component of sesame oil, on plasma L5 levels and atherosclerosis development in a rodent model and on the L5-induced apoptosis of ECs. Syrian hamsters, which have an LDL profile similar to that of humans, were fed a normal chow diet (control), a high-fat diet (HFD), or a HFD supplemented with the administration of 50 or 100 mg/kg of 1 via oral gavage (HFD+1) for 16 weeks (n = 8 per group). Hamsters in the HFD+1 groups had reduced plasma L5 levels when compared with the HFD group. Oil Red O staining showed that atherosclerotic lesion size was markedly reduced in the aortic arch of hamsters in the HFD+1 groups when compared with that in the HFD group. In human aortic ECs, 0.3-3 μM 1 blocked L5-induced apoptosis in a dose-dependent manner. Further mechanistic studies showed that 1 inhibited the L5-induced lectin-like oxidized LDL receptor-1 (LOX-1)-dependent phosphorylation of p38 MAPK and activation of caspase-3 and increased phosphorylation of eNOS and Akt. Our findings suggest that sesamol (1) protects against atherosclerosis by reducing L5-induced atherogenicity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)225-233
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Natural Products
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 27 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Drug Discovery
  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Complementary and alternative medicine
  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmaceutical Science
  • Organic Chemistry


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