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Plant pentacyclic triterpenic acids as modulators of lipid membrane physical properties

By Jesús Prades, Oliver Vögler, Regina Alemany, Manuel Gómez-Florit, Sergio S. Funari, Valentina Ruiz-Gutiérrez and Francisca Barceló


Free triterpenic acids (TTPs) present in plants are bioactive compounds exhibiting multiple nutriceutical activities. The underlying molecular mechanisms have only been examined in part and mainly focused on anti-inflammatory properties, cancer and cardiovascular diseases, in all of which TTPs frequently affect membrane-related proteins. Based on the structural characteristics of TTPs, we assume that their effect on biophysical properties of cell membranes could play a role for their biological activity. In this context, our study is focused on the compounds, oleanolic (3β-hydroxy-12- oleanen-28-oic acid, OLA), maslinic (2α,3β-dihydroxy-12-oleanen-28- oic acid, MSL) and ursolic ((3β)-3-hydroxyurs-12-en-28-oic acid, URL) as the most important TTPs present in orujo olive oil. X-ray diffraction, differential scanning calorimetry, 31P nuclear magnetic resonance and Laurdan fluorescence data provide experimental evidence that OLA, MSL and URL altered the structural properties of 1,2-dipalmitoyl-sn-glycero-3- phosphatidylcholine (DPPC) and DPPC-Cholesterol (Cho) rich membranes, being located into the polar-hydrophobic interphase. Specifically, in DPPC membranes, TTPs altered the structural order of the Lβ′, phase without destabilizing the lipid bilayer. The existence of a nonbilayer isotropic phase in coexistence with the liquid crystalline Lα phase, as observed in DPPC:URL samples, indicated the presence of lipid structures with high curvature (probably inverted micelles). In DPPC:Cho membranes, TTPs affected the membrane phase properties increasing the Laurdan GP values above 40 °C. MSL and URL induced segregation of Cho within the bilayer, in contrast to OLA, that reduced the structural organization of the membrane. These results strengthen the relevance of TTP interactions with cell membranes as a molecular mechanism underlying their broad spectrum of biological effects. © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.This research has received funding from the European Community's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007–2013): DESY-HASYLAB-Project No. II-20090005 EC, “Comision Interministerial de Ciencia y Tecnología” (CICYT, AGL2008-02258) and “Instituto de Salud Carlos III” (RD06/0045).Peer Reviewe

Topics: Plant triterpenic acid, Triterpene-membrane interaction, Membrane structure
Publisher: 'Elsevier BV'
Year: 2012
DOI identifier: 10.1016/j.bbamem.2010.12.007
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Provided by: Digital.CSIC
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