Abnormal lipid metabolism down-regulates adenosine triphosphate synthase β-subunit protein expression in corpus cavernosum smooth musclein vitroandin vivo

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Metabolic syndrome is closely related to erectile dysfunction (ED), and hyperlipidaemia is considered a major risk factor for ED. Adenosine triphosphate (ATP) synthase is believed to play an important role in metabolic syndrome; it has been hypothesised that ATP synthase contributes to ED development. We have verified this hypothesis using primary cultured human corpus cavernosum smooth muscle (HCCSM) cells treated with excessive free fat acid (FFA) and a high-fat diet (HFD) mouse model. Our results showed that high fatty factors could cause lipid accumulation in HCCSM cells, which could result in abnormal lipid metabolism, such as high levels of triglycerides, cholesterol and glucose in the HFD mice. There was a remarkable down-regulation of ATP synthase and p-Akt after in vivo and in vitro excessive FFA treatments. These results indicated that abnormal lipid metabolism could induce ATP synthase down-regulation via the Akt phosphorylation pathway and that ATP synthase may be a target of lipotoxicity in corpus cavernosum smooth muscle cells.

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