Apolipoprotein mimetic peptides are short synthetic peptides that share structural, as well as biological features of native apolipoproteins. The early positive clinical trials of intravenous preparations of apoA-I, the main protein component of high density lipoproteins (HDL), have stimulated great interest in the use of apolipoprotein mimetic peptides as possible therapeutic agents. Currently, there are a wide variety of apolipoprotein mimetic peptides at various stages of drug development. These peptides typically have been designed to either promote cholesterol efflux or act as anti-oxidants, but they usually exert other biological effects, such as anti-inflammatory and anti-thrombotic effects. Uncertainty about which of these biological properties is the most important for explaining their anti-atherogenic effect is a major unresolved question in the field. Structure-function studies relating the in vitro properties of these peptides to their ability to reduce atherosclerosis in animal models may uncover the best rationale for the design of these peptides and may lead to a better understanding of the mechanisms behind the atheroprotective effect of HDL.
- Cholesterol efflux
- High density lipoproteins