Scope - Early perturbations in vascular health can be detected by imposing subjects to a high fat (HF) challenge and measure response capacity. Subtle responses can be determined by assessment of whole-genome transcriptional changes. We aimed to magnify differences in health by comparing gene-expression changes in peripheral blood mononuclear cells toward a high MUFA or saturated fatty acids (SFA) challenge between subjects with different cardiovascular disease risk profiles and to identify fatty acid specific gene-expression pathways. Methods and results -In a cross-over study, 17 lean and 15 obese men (50–70 years) received two 95 g fat shakes, high in SFAs or MUFAs. Peripheral blood mononuclear cell gene-expression profiles were assessed fasted and 4-h postprandially. Comparisons were made between groups and shakes. During fasting, 294 genes were significantly differently expressed between lean and obese. The challenge increased differences to 607 genes after SFA and 2516 genes after MUFA. In both groups, SFA decreased expression of cholesterol biosynthesis and uptake genes and increased cholesterol efflux genes. MUFA increased inflammatory genes and PPAR-a targets involved in ß-oxidation. Conclusion - Based upon gene-expression changes, we conclude that an HF challenge magnifies differences in health, especially after MUFA. Our findings also demonstrate how SFAs and MUFAs exert distinct effects on lipid handling pathways in immune cells.
- triglyceride-rich lipoproteins
- blood mononuclear-cells
High fat challenges with different fatty acids affect distinct atherogenic gene expression pathways in immune cells from lean and obese subjects