The ability to change conformation (that is, change shape) is a key aspect in the function of many proteins. Apolipoprotein A-I (apoA-I) is the major protein responsible for the formation of high density lipoprotein (HDL, commonly known as the “good cholesterol”), and undergoes significant conformational change as it transitions between lipid-free and lipid-bound forms, as well as during the maturation of the HDL particle. My work focuses on understanding how apoA-I transitions between lipid-free and lipid-bound forms, how different types of lipids affect the interaction of apoA-I with the HDL particle, and how post-translational modification of apoA-I impacts its ability to undergo conformational change. The ability to transition between lipid-free and lipid-bound form has been shown to be relevant in the study of cardiovascular disease. Thus, our findings may shed light on the molecular mechanisms of this complex disease.
Borja MS, Hammerson B, Tang C, Savinova OV, Shearer GC, Oda MN (2017) Apolipoprotein A-I exchange is impaired in metabolic syndrome patients asymptomatic for diabetes and cardiovascular disease. PLoS ONE 12(8): e0182217. doi: journal.pone.0182217
Heier M, Borja MS, Brunborg C, Seljeflot I, Margeirsdottir HD, Hanssen KF, Dahl-Jørgensen K, Oda MN (2017) Reduced HDL function in children and young adults with type 1 diabetes. Cardiovasc Diabetol. 16(1):85. doi: 10.1186/s12933-017-0570-2
Soupene E, Borja MS, Borda M, Larkin SK, Kuypers FA (2016) Featured Article: Alterations of lecithin cholesterol acyltransferase activity and apolipoprotein A-I functionality in human sickle blood. Exp. Biol. Med. 241(17):1933-1942. doi: 10.1177/1535370216657447
Borja MS, Ng KF, Irwin A, Hong J, Wu X, Isquith D, Zhao XQ, Prazen B, Gildengorin V, Oda MN, Vaisar T (2015) HDL-apolipoprotein A-I exchange is independently associated with cholesterol efflux capacity. J Lipid Res. 56(10):2002-9. doi: 10.1194/jlr.M059865
Borja MS, Zhao L, Hammerson B, Tang C, Yang R, Carson N, et al. (2013) HDL-apoA-I Exchange: Rapid Detection and Association with Atherosclerosis. PLoS ONE 8(8): e71541. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0071541