ApoE genotype, cardiovascular risk and responsiveness to dietary fat manipulation.
We report two novel APOB mutations causing short apolipoprotein B (apoB) truncations undetectable in plasma and familial hypobetalipoproteinemia (FHBL). In Family 56, a 5 bp deletion in APOB exon 7 (870_874del5) causes a frame shift, converting tyrosine to a stop codon (Y220X) and producing an apoB-5 truncation. In Family 59, a point mutation (1941G>T) in APOB exon 13 converts glutamic acid to stop codon (E578X), specifying apoB-13. A recurrent mutation in exon 26 (4432delT) produces apoB-30.9 in Family 58. In some members of these families, we observed that plasma low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and apoB levels were unusually low even for subjects heterozygous for FHBL. To ascertain whether genetic variations in apolipoprotein E (apoE) would explain some of the variations of apoB and LDL cholesterol levels, apoE genotypes were assessed in affected subjects from a total of eight FHBL families with short apoB truncations. Heterozygous FHBL with the epsilon3/epsilon4 genotype had 10-1 5mg/dL higher plasma LDL cholesterol and apoB levels compared to subjects with the epsilon2/epsilon3 and epsilon3/epsilon3 genotypes. The apoE genotype has been reported to account for approximately 10% of the variation of LDL cholesterol in the general population. It accounted for 15-60% of the variability of plasma LDL cholesterol or apoB levels in our FHBL subjects. The physiologic bases for the greater effects of apoE in FHBL remain to be determined.