Induction of ABCA1 and ABCG1 expression by the liver X receptor modulator cineole in macrophages

Hee Jin Jun, Minh Hien Hoang, Siok Koon Yeo, Yaoyao Jia, Sung Joon Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Citations (Scopus)


We investigated the effect of cineole on the expression of genes related to reverse cholesterol transport and hepatic fatty acid metabolism. Cineole, a small aroma compound in teas and herbs, significantly stimulated the transactivation of liver X receptor modulator (LXR)-α and LXR-β. The mRNA and protein expression of LXRs and their target genes, including ABCA1 and ABCG1, was significantly increased in macrophages stimulated with cineole. This led to the subsequent removal of cholesterol from the cells. Interestingly, cineole showed tissue-selective LXR induction: hepatocytes stimulated with cineole showed significantly reduced expression of LXR-α and LXR-α-responsive genes, including FAS and SCD-1 (P <0.05). Accordingly, hepatocytes treated with cineole displayed reduced cellular lipid accumulation compared with control cells, as assessed by Oil Red O lipid staining and cholesterol quantification. These results suggest that cineole is a selective LXR modulator that regulates the expression of key genes in reverse cholesterol transport in macrophages without inducing lipogenesis in hepatocytes. This selective LXR modulator may have practical implications for the development of hypocholesterolemic or anti-atherosclerotic agents and also suggests.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)579-583
Number of pages5
JournalBioorganic and Medicinal Chemistry Letters
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Jan 15

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We appreciate the technical assistance of Hea-Won Kim. This study was supported by the Korean Forest Service (Forest Science & Technology Project No. S120912L020110), by “Cooperative Research Program for Agricultural Science and Technology Development (PJ00842203, No. 201203010306090010400)”, Rural Development Administration, Republic of Korea, and by the Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF, 20110027386).


  • Cholesterol
  • Cineole
  • Hepatocytes
  • Liver X receptor
  • Macrophage

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Pharmaceutical Science
  • Drug Discovery
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Organic Chemistry


Dive into the research topics of 'Induction of ABCA1 and ABCG1 expression by the liver X receptor modulator cineole in macrophages'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this