Plasma proteome correlates of lipid and lipoprotein: Biomarkers of metabolic diversity and inflammation in children of rural Nepal

Sun Eun Lee, Kerry Schulze, Christine P. Stewart, Robert N. Cole, Lee S.F. Wu, Abdulkerim Eroglu, James D. Yager, John Groopman, Parul Christian, Keith P. West

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Proteins involved in lipoprotein metabolism can modulate cardiovascular health. While often measured to assess adult metabolic diseases, little is known about the proteomes of lipoproteins and their relation to metabolic dysregulation and underlying inflammation in undernourished child populations. The objective of this population study was to globally characterize plasma proteins systemically associated with HDL, LDL, and triglycerides in 500 Nepalese children. Abnormal lipid profiles characterized by elevated plasma triglycerides and low HDL-cholesterol (HDL-C) concentrations were common, especially in children with subclinical inflammation. Among 982 proteins analyzed, the relative abundance of 11, 12, and 52 plasma proteins was correlated with LDL-cholesterol (r = 0.430.70), triglycerides (r = 0.390.53), and HDL-C (r = 0.490.79) concentrations, respectively. These proteins included apolipoproteins and numerous unexpected intracellular and extracellular matrix binding proteins, likely originating in hepatic and peripheral tissues. Relative abundance of two-thirds of the HDL proteome varied with inflammation, with acute phase reactants higher by 440%, and proteins involved in HDL biosynthesis, cholesterol efflux, vitamin transport, angiogenesis, and tissue repair lower by 320%. Untargeted plasma proteomics detects comprehensive sets of both known and novel lipoprotein-associated proteins likely reflecting systemic regulation of lipoprotein metabolism and vascular homeostasis. Inflammation-altered distributions of the HDL proteome may be predisposing undernourished populations to early chronic disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)149-160
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Lipid Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2019


  • High density lipoprotein-cholesterol
  • Low density lipoprotein-cholesterol
  • Plasma proteomics
  • Triglycerides

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Endocrinology
  • Cell Biology


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