Little information is available on cholesterol absorption and synthesis in human type 1 diabetes. We studied these variables using serum cholesterol precursor sterol ratios to cholesterol as surrogate markers of cholesterol synthesis and those of cholestanol and plant sterols to reflect cholesterol absorption in seven type 1 diabetic subjects and in five age- and body weight–matched control subjects. Total and lipoprotein cholesterol levels were similar, but triglycerides in intermediate-density lipoprotein (IDL) and LDL were higher in type 1 diabetic than in control subjects. Most of the marker sterols were transported by LDL and HDL in both groups. The percentage of esterified cholesterol was lower in triglyceride-rich lipoproteins in diabetic patients than in control subjects. The ratios of the absorption marker sterols in serum were higher, and those of the synthesis markers were lower in type 1 diabetic than in control subjects. The increased cholestanol ratios were seen in all lipoproteins, and those of free and total plant sterols were mainly in LDL, whereas the decreased free and total synthesis markers were mainly in all lipoproteins. In conclusion, high absorption and low synthesis marker sterols seem to characterize human type 1 diabetes. These findings could be related to low expression of ABC G/5 G/8 genes, resulting in high absorption of cholesterol and sterols in general and low synthesis of cholesterol compared with type 2 diabetes.

Patients with type 2 diabetes frequently have dyslipidemia and altered metabolism of triglyceride-rich lipoproteins. In addition, cholesterol metabolism is changed, such that cholesterol absorption efficiency and serum plant sterols, reflecting cholesterol absorption (1), are low (2,3) and serum cholesterol precursor sterols and synthesis of cholesterol and its biliary and fecal elimination are increased (2,4,5). Coronary heart disease occurs frequently, and myocardial infarction is a common cause of death. Type 1 diabetes has less advanced dyslipidemia (6), but obliterating arterial disease often develops, and myocardial infarction is also an important cause of death in these patients (7). The relatively normal lipid pattern might be the reason why the metabolism of cholesterol is less studied in patients with type 1 than type 2 diabetes. For instance, there is very little information on cholesterol absorption or synthesis in patients with type 1 diabetes. There is one study (8) of elevated serum plant sterols in a group of poorly controlled patients with type 1 diabetes, and the levels were reduced during intensified insulin treatment. In streptozotocin-induced diabetes in experimental animals, cholesterol absorption is elevated and synthesis downregulated, but these alterations can result not only from lack of insulin but also from gut hypertrophy that is present in these animals (9). We recently reported (10) that cholesterol absorption is higher in type 1 than in type 2 diabetes. To this end, our intention was to compare cholesterol metabolism in type 1 diabetic subjects with that in control subjects, and we investigated surrogate markers of cholesterol absorption and synthesis by measuring serum noncholesterol sterols (1) in type 1 diabetic and control subjects. In addition to the total serum values of noncholesterol sterols, their free and esterified fractions were also studied in different lipoproteins, i.e., VLDL, intermediate-density lipoprotein (IDL), LDL, and HDL, which were separated by ultracentrifugation.

From among the type 1 diabetic patients of our endocrine outpatient department, four men and three women, 20–53 years of age (30.4 ± 4.4 years [mean ± SE]), with BMI 23 ± 1 kg/m2, good glycemic control (HbA1c 6–7%), and a constant insulin dose volunteered to the study. Age- and BMI-matched control subjects (three men and two women, age 24–54 years, mean 32.8 ± 5.7, BMI 23 ± 1 kg/m2) were obtained from our earlier control population. The control subjects were recommended to begin a low–saturated fat/low-cholesterol diet similar to the one that the diabetic subjects were consuming at least 3 weeks before baseline. Fasting blood samples were obtained in the morning, at ∼8:00 a.m., before the morning insulin dose in the diabetic subjects. The research protocol was accepted by the ethics committee of our department (University of Helsinki). The investigation was conducted according to the principles of the Declaration of Helsinki.

Laboratory methods.

Serum cholesterol and triglycerides were measured with commercial kits (CHOD-PAP and GPO-PAP, respectively; Roche Diagnostics, Mannheim, Germany). Blood glucose and HbA1c were assayed by routine hospital methods. VLDL, IDL, LDL, and HDL were separated with ultracentrifugation. Noncholesterol sterols (including cholestenol and lathosterol, which reliably reflect cholesterol synthesis [1], and cholestanol, a metabolite of cholesterol, and campesterol and sitosterol, the plant sterols, which are markers of cholesterol absorption [1,11]) were measured with gas-liquid chromatography (GLC) (12) from nonsaponifiable material of serum and lipoprotein fractions. For determination of free and esterified sterols, chloroform/methanol extracts of serum and lipoproteins were applied on thin-layer chromatoplate and the free and esterified sterol fractions were separated. Cholesterol and noncholesterol sterols were quantitated with GLC from the free sterol fraction, after saponification from the esterified fraction. The results of the noncholesterol sterols are given either as concentrations (micrograms per deciliter), so as to see the distribution of sterols in different lipoproteins, or as ratios of cholesterol (millimoles per mole of cholesterol) obtained from the same GLC run. The term ratio is frequently used in the text for the noncholesterol sterol–to–cholesterol ratio.

Means ± SEs were calculated, and the statistical differences between the diabetic and control groups were calculated by Student’s t test, using P < 0.05 as the limit for statistical significance. Logarithmic transformations were performed with skewed distribution.

Concentrations and esterification of sterols.

Serum lipid levels were similar, except that IDL and LDL triglycerides were higher in the diabetic than in the control subjects (Table 1). From among the concentrations of the noncholesterol sterols in serum, those reflecting cholesterol synthesis (cholestenol and lathosterol) were lower, and the absorption marker sterols (campesterol, sitosterol, and cholestanol) were higher in type 1 diabetic compared with control subjects for nonesterified, esterified, and total cholestanol and cholestenol (Fig. 1). Additional data for lathosterol and cholestanol (Fig. 2) actually show that the serum concentrations were reflected mainly by LDL and HDL. Namely, >50% of total serum noncholesterol sterols were transported by LDL and ∼30–40% by HDL. The latter one transported relatively more esterified than nonesterified sterols, especially the absorption markers, whereas VLDL, IDL, and LDL preferentially transported free sterols (Fig. 2).

The esterification percentage of cholesterol was significantly lower in the VLDL and IDL of type 1 diabetic than in control subjects, whereas the respective values were higher for the synthesis markers, significantly so for lathosterol (Table 2). The esterification percentages were markedly low in the VLDL in both groups and increased gradually toward HDL, in which the highest percentages of esterification were seen for cholestanol (∼83%) and the lowest ones for lathosterol (63%).

Ratios of noncholesterol sterols in serum.

The ratios of the absorption markers in serum were higher in type 1 diabetic than in control subjects, significantly so for all cholestanol ratios and esterified campesterol. On the other hand, the ratios of esterified and total cholestenol and free and total lathosterol were significantly lower in diabetic versus control subjects (Table 3).

Ratios of noncholesterol sterols in lipoproteins.

The ratios of free, esterified, and total cholestanol were higher (almost twofold for free VLDL sterols) in all of the lipoprotein fractions of diabetic compared with control subjects. The esterified and total campesterol and sitosterol ratios were higher only in LDL in diabetic than in control subjects. The ratios of absorption sterols in both groups were usually lowest in VLDL, surprisingly high in IDL, and usually highest in HDL. Thus, measurement of the mean ratios of the absorption marker sterols to cholesterol in serum seems to overestimate those in VLDL and frequently underestimate those in HDL (Table 4).

The free cholestenol ratio in VLDL and those of esterified and total in LDL were significantly lower in type 1 diabetic than in control subjects. The total lathosterol ratio in VLDL and those of free and total lathosterol in IDL and LDL were lower in diabetic than in control subjects. The lathosterol ratio gradually decreased from VLDL to HDL in control subjects in the free, but not in the ester, fraction and less consistently in type 1 diabetes. Thus, the ratio of total lathosterol in serum was lower than that in VLDL and IDL, but quite similar to that in LDL and HDL. The lower cholesterol synthesis in type 1 diabetic than control subjects was best revealed by the finding that the free cholestenol and lathosterol ratios in type 1 diabetes were only ∼18–50% in VLDL and IDL from those in the control subjects. The respective values for the total sterol ratios in serum were 38–58%. In both groups, the ratios of the free lathosterols were significantly higher than the esterified ones in every lipoprotein fraction. The negative correlation between absorption and synthesis sterols for the ratios of free cholestenol and cholestanol in LDL is shown in Fig. 3.

The major novel findings of the present study were the increased ratios of sterol markers for cholesterol absorption and decreased ratios of sterol markers for cholesterol synthesis in type 1 diabetic compared with control subjects. These findings can be interpreted to indicate high absorption and low synthesis of cholesterol in patients with type 1 diabetes compared with nondiabetic control subjects. Other findings showed that the difference between the two groups in free, esterified, and total noncholesterol sterols was also present in different lipoproteins. The sterol ratios in serum were only modestly different from those in different lipoproteins.

In the literature there is experimental diabetes evidence that cholesterol metabolism is altered in insulin deficiency. Namely, streptozotocin-induced (insulin-deficient) diabetes in rats hypertrophies intestinal mucosal function, enhancing fat and cholesterol absorption and reducing cholesterol synthesis (9). Serum plant sterols, campesterol and sitosterol, have been measured in these animals, and they were increased (13). The values were improved with insulin treatment. However, the gut hypertrophy in this animal model may also play a role in altering cholesterol metabolism, not only insulin deficiency per se. In humans, significantly increased campesterol and sitosterol ratios have been found in the serum of poorly controlled patients with type 1 diabetes, and the values were normalized with intensified insulin treatment (8). Unfortunately, cholesterol precursors were not measured, so changes in cholesterol synthesis could not be evaluated. One study (14) with mainly type 2 diabetic subjects also included a small group of type 1 diabetic subjects who exhibited actually slightly reduced cholesterol synthesis and fecal output of neutral sterols when compared with control subjects. In two brothers with type 1 diabetes, the percentage of cholesterol absorption was exceptionally high, ∼60% for both of them, despite marked bile acid malabsorption (15). High absorption efficiency was associated with high cholestanol and plant sterol ratios in serum. It is also known that increased amounts of dietary cholesterol increase LDL cholesterol more effectively in type 1 diabetic than in matched control subjects (16). On the other hand, reduction of dietary cholesterol with modification of fat intake has been observed (17) to effectively reduce serum cholesterol in type 1 diabetic subjects.

The differences in noncholesterol sterols between type 1 diabetic and control subjects were seen with variable statistical significance in concentrations and ratios, in free and ester fractions, and in serum and different lipoproteins. However, even though the ratios of different sterols in serum were not exactly the same as those in different lipoproteins, the mean serum ratios seem to uncover the difference between the two groups in both absorption and synthesis markers. For instance, despite a nonsignificantly higher esterified lathosterol ratio in any lipoprotein of the control subjects compared with the diabetic subjects and a nonsignificantly higher free lathosterol ratio in HDL and markedly higher ratios in the LDL, IDL, and VLDL (up to three-fold higher in VLDL) of the control subjects versus those with diabetes, the mean lathosterol ratio in serum was ∼50% higher in the control subjects than in the diabetic subjects. However, analysis of the lipoproteins could reveal more detailed information of the metabolic differences. That cholesterol synthesis in diabetic patients was reduced mainly in liver could be interpreted by the marked lowering of lathosterol release into VLDL compared with that of the control subjects. The higher ester percentages of the synthesis marker sterols than of cholesterol in the triglyceride-rich lipoproteins could contribute to the high precursor sterol ratios in diabetes. A basic reason for this high esterification could be the prolonged half-life of the precursors compared with cholesterol rather than a sterol-specific difference in lecithin cholesteryl acyl transferase activity.

In contrast to lathosterol, both the ratios of free and esterified absorption sterols were lowest in VLDL and highest in HDL in both groups. The high ratios in HDL might point to reversed transport of these sterols from tissues to the liver by HDL itself or after transfer to LDL by cholesteryl ester transfer protein. Assuming that the absorption sterols have impaired biliary secretion in diabetes, their hepatic contents could be increased, which in association with possible low hepatic cholesterol synthesis could have produced VLDL with high absorption sterol ratio to cholesterol. The mean ratio of cholestanol in VLDL was ∼84% higher in diabetic than in control subjects, but the ratio increased more in other lipoproteins and was less marked for VLDL campesterol or sitosterol.

The findings of high cholesterol absorption and low cholesterol synthesis, as indicated by low ratios of synthesis markers to absorption markers (Fig. 3) in type 1 diabetic patients suggest that the variables of cholesterol metabolism are opposite to those in control subjects and especially in type 2 diabetic patients (10). In the latter patients, cholesterol absorption efficiency is low (2,18), whereas the synthesis of cholesterol is high (2,4,5). The findings are found also in obese subjects without diabetes (19) and in nonobese type 2 diabetic patients (20). What then are the factors regulating cholesterol metabolism in opposite directions in the two forms of diabetes? Our hypothesis is that the ABCG-ATP cassette transport system regulates cholesterol absorption and synthesis in the two types of diabetes. Briefly, current research indicates that ABC G/5 G/8 genes are almost exclusively expressed in intestinal enterocytes and liver (21). In transgenic mice or in overexpression of the two genes in mice, serum plant sterol levels and sterol absorption are reduced and cholesterol synthesis and biliary and fecal secretion of cholesterol are increased (22). Thus, the changes in cholesterol metabolism in these mice are identical to those in type 2 diabetic subjects. Accordingly, a resemblance of cholesterol metabolism in obesity (19) and type 2 diabetes (2,18,20) to that found in overexpression of ABC G/5 G/8 genes has been emphasized.

On the other hand, knockout of ABC G/5 G/8 genes in mice changes the serum sterol pattern (22) to resemble that seen in hereditary sitosterolemia (23), a metabolic disease caused by mutations of the ABC G/5 G/8 genes (21,24). In fact, downregulated expression of the two genes increases cholesterol and plant sterol absorption and prevents their biliary secretion, resulting in enhanced serum plant sterol and cholesterol levels. However, subsequently increased hepatic cholesterol inhibits cholesterol synthesis, preventing extensive increase of serum cholesterol and lowers biliary and fecal secretion of cholesterol (25). We propose that in type 1 diabetes, expression of ABC G/5 G/8 genes is downregulated, probably due to lack of effective insulin action, resulting in increased intestinal cholesterol and plant sterol absorption and their reduced biliary secretion. Consequently, serum cholestanol and plant sterol ratios are increased. Owing to enhanced accumulation of cholesterol, hepatic cholesterol synthesis is downregulated, precursor sterol ratios are reduced, and LDL cholesterol is normal or slightly increased, with extensively increased values occurring only during the ketotic state (26). These are actually the findings recorded in our present small study population. In fact, in rats with streptozotocin-induced diabetes, the expression of hepatic and intestinal mRNA of ABC G/5 G/8 was reduced compared with control subjects (27).

The present findings suggest that increased cholesterol absorption in type 1 diabetes could be a primary factor in modifying cholesterol metabolism, such that homeostatic mechanisms decrease cholesterol synthesis, a factor that could keep the LDL cholesterol concentration quite normal. These findings are explained by altered expression of ABC G/5 G/8 gene expression or the specific occurrence of their polymorphisms. The clinical importance of whether increased serum plant sterols in general and in type 1 diabetic patients are independent risk factors of atherosclerosis has recently been discussed (2830).

FIG. 1.

Free (top portion) and esterified (bottom portion) cholestanol (absorption marker sterol) and cholestenol (synthesis marker sterol) concentrations in control subjects and type 1 diabetic patients. Values (from top to bottom) are for total, free, and esterified sterols and are means ± SE. All values differ significantly between type 1 diabetic and control subjects, except for esterified cholestenol.

FIG. 1.

Free (top portion) and esterified (bottom portion) cholestanol (absorption marker sterol) and cholestenol (synthesis marker sterol) concentrations in control subjects and type 1 diabetic patients. Values (from top to bottom) are for total, free, and esterified sterols and are means ± SE. All values differ significantly between type 1 diabetic and control subjects, except for esterified cholestenol.

FIG. 2.

The percentage distributions of free and esterified lathosterol (synthesis marker) and cholestanol (absorption marker) concentrations in VLDL, IDL, LDL, and HDL (from top to bottom) in type 1 diabetic and control subjects. Absolute total concentrations (mean ± SE) are given in the bottoms of the columns.

FIG. 2.

The percentage distributions of free and esterified lathosterol (synthesis marker) and cholestanol (absorption marker) concentrations in VLDL, IDL, LDL, and HDL (from top to bottom) in type 1 diabetic and control subjects. Absolute total concentrations (mean ± SE) are given in the bottoms of the columns.

FIG. 3.

Free cholestenol (synthesis marker) and cholestanol (absorption marker) in LDL in type 1 diabetic patients (○) and control subjects (•). r = −0.672, P = 0.017.

FIG. 3.

Free cholestenol (synthesis marker) and cholestanol (absorption marker) in LDL in type 1 diabetic patients (○) and control subjects (•). r = −0.672, P = 0.017.

TABLE 1

Serum total and lipoprotein lipids in type 1 diabetic and in control subjects (n = 5)

LipidsControl subjectsDiabetic subjects
n 
Cholesterol (mmol/l)   
    Total 4.78 ± 0.40 5.31 ± 0.49 
    VLDL 0.33 ± 0.09 0.40 ± 0.10 
    IDL 0.14 ± 0.05 0.21 ± 0.03 
    LDL 2.61 ± 0.35 3.03 ± 0.50 
    HDL 1.70 ± 0.08 1.67 ± 0.08 
Triglycerides (mmol/l)   
    Total 1.07 ± 0.20 1.43 ± 0.21 
    VLDL 0.67 ± 0.18 0.83 ± 0.17 
    IDL 0.06 ± 0.01 0.11 ± 0.02* 
    LDL 0.17 ± 0.02 0.25 ± 0.03* 
    HDL 0.15 ± 0.03 0.24 ± 0.04 
LipidsControl subjectsDiabetic subjects
n 
Cholesterol (mmol/l)   
    Total 4.78 ± 0.40 5.31 ± 0.49 
    VLDL 0.33 ± 0.09 0.40 ± 0.10 
    IDL 0.14 ± 0.05 0.21 ± 0.03 
    LDL 2.61 ± 0.35 3.03 ± 0.50 
    HDL 1.70 ± 0.08 1.67 ± 0.08 
Triglycerides (mmol/l)   
    Total 1.07 ± 0.20 1.43 ± 0.21 
    VLDL 0.67 ± 0.18 0.83 ± 0.17 
    IDL 0.06 ± 0.01 0.11 ± 0.02* 
    LDL 0.17 ± 0.02 0.25 ± 0.03* 
    HDL 0.15 ± 0.03 0.24 ± 0.04 

Data are means ± SE.

*

P < 0.05 vs. control.

TABLE 2

Esterification percentages of sterols in different lipoproteins in patients with type 1 diabetes (n = 7) and control subjects (n = 5)

SterolsVLDL
IDL
LDL
HDL
ControlDiabetesControlDiabetesControlDiabetesControlDiabetes
Cholesterol 55 ± 2 49 ± 2* 68 ± 2 62 ± 2* 72 ± 1 72 ± 1 79 ± 2 79 ± 1 
Cholestanol 48 ± 3 42 ± 2 53 ± 4 54 ± 2 71 ± 2 69 ± 1 81 ± 1 83 ± 1 
Campesterol 51 ± 2 50 ± 2 55 ± 2 53 ± 1 63 ± 2 66 ± 1 77 ± 1 77 ± 1 
Sitosterol 43 ± 2 41 ± 3 54 ± 3 52 ± 2 61 ± 2 63 ± 1 78 ± 1 77 ± 1 
Cholestenol 19 ± 9 35 ± 14 41 ± 4 42 ± 11 73 ± 7 63 ± 13 54 ± 18 80 ± 8 
Lathosterol 24 ± 1 37 ± 2* 33 ± 2 44 ± 3* 44 ± 2 51 ± 3 61 ± 4 63 ± 3 
SterolsVLDL
IDL
LDL
HDL
ControlDiabetesControlDiabetesControlDiabetesControlDiabetes
Cholesterol 55 ± 2 49 ± 2* 68 ± 2 62 ± 2* 72 ± 1 72 ± 1 79 ± 2 79 ± 1 
Cholestanol 48 ± 3 42 ± 2 53 ± 4 54 ± 2 71 ± 2 69 ± 1 81 ± 1 83 ± 1 
Campesterol 51 ± 2 50 ± 2 55 ± 2 53 ± 1 63 ± 2 66 ± 1 77 ± 1 77 ± 1 
Sitosterol 43 ± 2 41 ± 3 54 ± 3 52 ± 2 61 ± 2 63 ± 1 78 ± 1 77 ± 1 
Cholestenol 19 ± 9 35 ± 14 41 ± 4 42 ± 11 73 ± 7 63 ± 13 54 ± 18 80 ± 8 
Lathosterol 24 ± 1 37 ± 2* 33 ± 2 44 ± 3* 44 ± 2 51 ± 3 61 ± 4 63 ± 3 

Data are means ± SE.

*

P < 0.05 vs. control.

TABLE 3

Noncholesterol sterol ratios in serum of control subjects and type 1 diabetic patients

Sterol (102 × mmol/ mol cholesterol)ControlDiabetes
n 
Cholestanol F 82 ± 12 156 ± 18* 
Cholestanol E 95 ± 9 154 ± 14* 
Cholestanol T 92 ± 9 155 ± 15* 
Campesterol F 263 ± 44 386 ± 64 
Campesterol E 204 ± 24 333 ± 56* 
Campesterol T 220 ± 29 348 ± 58 
Sitosterol F 150 ± 21 229 ± 41 
Sitosterol E 115 ± 12 181 ± 34 
Sitosterol T 124 ± 14 194 ± 36 
Cholestenol F 9.5 ± 2.8 3.6 ± 1.0 
Cholestenol E 8.2 ± 1.8 4.1 ± 0.5* 
Cholestenol T 8.5 ± 1.9 4.0 ± 0.6* 
Lathosterol F 163 ± 26 94 ± 12* 
Lathosterol E 57 ± 8 42 ± 6 
Lathosterol T 86 ± 12 56 ± 7* 
Sterol (102 × mmol/ mol cholesterol)ControlDiabetes
n 
Cholestanol F 82 ± 12 156 ± 18* 
Cholestanol E 95 ± 9 154 ± 14* 
Cholestanol T 92 ± 9 155 ± 15* 
Campesterol F 263 ± 44 386 ± 64 
Campesterol E 204 ± 24 333 ± 56* 
Campesterol T 220 ± 29 348 ± 58 
Sitosterol F 150 ± 21 229 ± 41 
Sitosterol E 115 ± 12 181 ± 34 
Sitosterol T 124 ± 14 194 ± 36 
Cholestenol F 9.5 ± 2.8 3.6 ± 1.0 
Cholestenol E 8.2 ± 1.8 4.1 ± 0.5* 
Cholestenol T 8.5 ± 1.9 4.0 ± 0.6* 
Lathosterol F 163 ± 26 94 ± 12* 
Lathosterol E 57 ± 8 42 ± 6 
Lathosterol T 86 ± 12 56 ± 7* 

Data are means ± SE.

*

P < 0.05 vs. control. E, ester; F, free; T, total.

TABLE 4

Free, esterified, and total noncholesterol sterol ratios in different lipoproteins in type 1 diabetic patients (n = 7) and in control subjects (n = 5)

Sterols (102 × mmol/ mol cholesterol)VLDL
IDL
LDL
HDL
ControlDiabetesControlDiabetesControlDiabetesControlDiabetes
Cholestanol F 69 ± 12 135 ± 15* 89 ± 17 152 ± 18* 82 ± 12 158 ± 18* 88 ± 12 159 ± 19* 
Cholestanol E 56 ± 7 93 ± 10* 64 ± 8 108 ± 8* 82 ± 9 139 ± 13* 118 ± 11 189 ± 17* 
Cholestanol T 62 ± 9 114 ± 12* 74 ± 11 125 ± 12* 82 ± 9 144 ± 14* 112 ± 11 183 ± 17* 
Campesterol F 223 ± 31 311 ± 55 281 ± 36 400 ± 66 270 ± 47 394 ± 66 259 ± 39 395 ± 60 
Campesterol E 211 ± 32 301 ± 52 222 ± 29 306 ± 50 191 ± 21 323 ± 50* 219 ± 29 353 ± 63 
Campesterol T 217 ± 32 306 ± 53 244 ± 31 342 ± 56 215 ± 27 344 ± 55* 227 ± 31 362 ± 62 
Sitosterol F 121 ± 21 154 ± 28 165 ± 24 219 ± 38 152 ± 23 239 ± 42 158 ± 21 239 ± 40 
Sitosterol E 80 ± 10 102 ± 20 122 ± 13 144 ± 26 99 ± 11 172 ± 31* 146 ± 18 207 ± 39 
Sitosterol T 98 ± 14 130 ± 24 137 ± 12 173 ± 30 115 ± 14 191 ± 34* 148 ± 18 214 ± 38 
Cholestenol F 7.7 ± 1.6 3.6 ± 1.1* 11.4 ± 5.3 2.1 ± 0.8 10.1 ± 3.5 3.2 ± 1.0 10.1 ± 2.8 5.1 ± 1.8 
Cholestenol E 1.7 ± 1.0 1.4 ± 0.7 3.6 ± 1.7 1.8 ± 0.9 11.2 ± 2.4 3.6 ± 1.1* 5.5 ± 2.3 5.9 ± 1.2 
Cholestenol T 4.5 ± 1.0 2.5 ± 0.6 6.5 ± 3.0 1.9 ± 0.9 10.8 ± 2.3 3.5 ± 1.0* 6.4 ± 2.3 5.8 ± 1.2 
Lathosterol F 192 ± 28 76 ± 9* 189 ± 33 90 ± 10* 169 ± 27 97 ± 13* 138 ± 24 95 ± 13 
Lathosterol E 56 ± 9 44 ± 6 58 ± 9 43 ± 5 54 ± 5 43 ± 7 59 ± 14 42 ± 6 
Lathosterol T 119 ± 16 60 ± 7* 109 ± 17 61 ± 6* 88 ± 11 59 ± 8* 74 ± 14 53 ± 7 
Sterols (102 × mmol/ mol cholesterol)VLDL
IDL
LDL
HDL
ControlDiabetesControlDiabetesControlDiabetesControlDiabetes
Cholestanol F 69 ± 12 135 ± 15* 89 ± 17 152 ± 18* 82 ± 12 158 ± 18* 88 ± 12 159 ± 19* 
Cholestanol E 56 ± 7 93 ± 10* 64 ± 8 108 ± 8* 82 ± 9 139 ± 13* 118 ± 11 189 ± 17* 
Cholestanol T 62 ± 9 114 ± 12* 74 ± 11 125 ± 12* 82 ± 9 144 ± 14* 112 ± 11 183 ± 17* 
Campesterol F 223 ± 31 311 ± 55 281 ± 36 400 ± 66 270 ± 47 394 ± 66 259 ± 39 395 ± 60 
Campesterol E 211 ± 32 301 ± 52 222 ± 29 306 ± 50 191 ± 21 323 ± 50* 219 ± 29 353 ± 63 
Campesterol T 217 ± 32 306 ± 53 244 ± 31 342 ± 56 215 ± 27 344 ± 55* 227 ± 31 362 ± 62 
Sitosterol F 121 ± 21 154 ± 28 165 ± 24 219 ± 38 152 ± 23 239 ± 42 158 ± 21 239 ± 40 
Sitosterol E 80 ± 10 102 ± 20 122 ± 13 144 ± 26 99 ± 11 172 ± 31* 146 ± 18 207 ± 39 
Sitosterol T 98 ± 14 130 ± 24 137 ± 12 173 ± 30 115 ± 14 191 ± 34* 148 ± 18 214 ± 38 
Cholestenol F 7.7 ± 1.6 3.6 ± 1.1* 11.4 ± 5.3 2.1 ± 0.8 10.1 ± 3.5 3.2 ± 1.0 10.1 ± 2.8 5.1 ± 1.8 
Cholestenol E 1.7 ± 1.0 1.4 ± 0.7 3.6 ± 1.7 1.8 ± 0.9 11.2 ± 2.4 3.6 ± 1.1* 5.5 ± 2.3 5.9 ± 1.2 
Cholestenol T 4.5 ± 1.0 2.5 ± 0.6 6.5 ± 3.0 1.9 ± 0.9 10.8 ± 2.3 3.5 ± 1.0* 6.4 ± 2.3 5.8 ± 1.2 
Lathosterol F 192 ± 28 76 ± 9* 189 ± 33 90 ± 10* 169 ± 27 97 ± 13* 138 ± 24 95 ± 13 
Lathosterol E 56 ± 9 44 ± 6 58 ± 9 43 ± 5 54 ± 5 43 ± 7 59 ± 14 42 ± 6 
Lathosterol T 119 ± 16 60 ± 7* 109 ± 17 61 ± 6* 88 ± 11 59 ± 8* 74 ± 14 53 ± 7 

Data are means ± SE.

*

P < 0.05 or less vs. control. E, ester; F, free; T, total.

The study was supported by grants from the Finnish Heart Research Foundation, the Yrjö Jahnsson Foundation, and the Kuopio University Hospital.

1.
Miettinen TA, Tilvis RS, Kesäniemi YA: Serum plant sterols and cholesterol precursors reflect cholesterol absorption and synthesis in volunteers of a randomly selected male population.
Am J Epidemiol
131
:
20
–31,
1990
2.
Simonen PP, Gylling HK, Miettinen TA: Diabetes contributes to cholesterol metabolism regardless of obesity.
Diabetes Care
25
:
1511
–1515,
2002
3.
Sutherland WH, Scott RS, Lintott CJ, Robertson MC, Stapely SA, Cox C: Plasma noncholesterol sterols in patients with non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus.
Horm Metab Res
24
:
172
–175,
1992
4.
Abrams JJ, Ginsberg H, Grundy SM: Metabolism of cholesterol and triglycerides in nonketotic diabetes mellitus.
Diabetes
31
:
903
–910,
1982
5.
Bennion LJ, Grundy SM: Effects of diabetes mellitus on cholesterol metabolism in man.
N Engl J Med
296
:
1365
–1371,
1977
6.
Winocour PH, Durrington PN, Ishola M, Anderson DC: Lipoprotein abnormalities in insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus.
Lancet
1
:
1176
–1178,
1986
7.
Roper NA, Bilous RW, Kelly WF, Unwin NC, Connolly VM: Cause-specific mortality in a population with diabetes: South Tees Diabetes Mortality Study.
Diabetes Care
25
:
43
–48,
2002
8.
Kojima H, Hidaka H, Matsumura K, Fujita Y, Yamada S, Haneda M, Yasuda H, Kikkawa R, Kashiwagi A: Effect of glycemic control on plasma plant sterol levels and post-heparin diamine oxidase activity in type 1 diabetic patients.
Atherosclerosis
145
:
389
–397,
1999
9.
Young NL, Lopez DR, McNamara DJ: Contributions of absorbed dietary cholesterol and cholesterol synthesized in small intestine to hypercholesterolemia in diabetic rats.
Diabetes
37
:
1151
–1156,
1988
10.
Miettinen TA, Gylling H, Tuominen J, Simonen P, Koivisto V: Low synthesis and high absorption of cholesterol characterize type 1 diabetes.
Diabetes Care
27
:
53
–58,
2004
11.
Miettinen TA, Tilvis RS, Kesäniemi YA: Serum cholestanol and plant sterol levels in relation to cholesterol metabolism in middle-aged men.
Metabolism
38
:
136
–140,
1989
12.
Miettinen TA: Cholesterol metabolism during ketoconazole treatment in man.
J Lipid Res
29
:
43
–51,
1988
13.
Kojima H, Omoto Y, Hidaka H, Aoki T, Nakamura T, Kawabata T, Konaka K, Kashiwagi A, Kikkawa R, Shigata Y: Increased plasma post-heparin diamine oxidase activity and plant sterol levels in streptozotocin diabetic rat.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun
186
:
398
–404,
1992
14.
Briones ER, Steiger DL, Palumbo PJ, O’Fallon WM, Langworthy AL, Zimmerman BR, Kottke BA: Sterol excretion and cholesterol absorption in diabetics and nondiabetics with and without hyperlipidemia.
Am J Clin Nutr
44
:
353
–361,
1986
15.
Gylling H, Miettinen TA: Cholesterol absorption and cholesterol and bile acid synthesis in two brothers with insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus and diarrhea.
Diabetes Care
17
:
1345
–1347,
1994
16.
Romano G, Tilly-Kiesi MK, Patti L, Taskinen MR, Pacioni D, Cassader M, Riccardi G, Rivellese AA: Effects of dietary cholesterol on plasma lipoproteins and their subclasses in IDDM patients.
Diabetologia
41
:
193
–200,
1998
17.
Kaufmann RL, Assal JPh, Soeldner JS, Wilmshurst EG, Lemaire JR, Gleason RE, White P: Plasma lipid levels in diabetic children: effect of diet restricted in cholesterol and saturated fats.
Diabetes
24
:
672
–679,
1975
18.
Simonen P, Gylling H, Howard AN, Miettinen TA: Introducing a new component of the metabolic syndrome: low cholesterol absorption.
Am J Clin Nutr
72
:
82
–88,
2000
19.
Miettinen TA, Gylling H: Cholesterol absorption efficiency and sterol metabolism in obesity.
Atherosclerosis
153
:
241
–248,
2000
20.
Simonen PP, Gylling H, Miettinen TA: Body weight modulates cholesterol metabolism in non-insulin dependent type 2 diabetics.
Obes Res
10
:
328
–335,
2002
21.
Berge KE, Tian H, Graf GA, Yu L, Grishin NV, Schultz J, Kwiterovich P, Shan B, Barnes R, Hobbs HH: Accumulation of dietary cholesterol in sitosterolemia caused by mutations in adjacent ABC transporters.
Science
290
:
1771
–1775,
2000
22.
Yu L, Li-Hawkins J, Hammer RE, Berge KE, Horton JD, Cohen JC, Hobbs HH: Overexpression of ABCG5 and ABCG8 promotes biliary cholesterol secretion and reduces fractional absorption of dietary cholesterol.
J Clin Invest
110
:
671
–680,
2002
23.
Bhattacharyya AK, Connor WE: Beta-sitosterolemia and xanthomatosis: a newly described lipid storage disease in two sisters.
J Clin Invest
53
:
1033
–1043,
1974
24.
Lee MH, Lu K, Hazard S, Yu H, Shulenin S, Hidaka H, Kojima H, Allikmets R, Sakuma N, Pegoraro R, Srivastava AK, Salen G, Dean M, Patel SB: Identification of a gene, ABCG5, important in the regulation of dietary cholesterol absorption.
Nat Genet
27
:
79
–83,
2001
25.
Miettinen TA: Phytosterolaemia, xanthomatosis and premature atherosclerotic arterial disease: a case with high plant sterol absorption, impaired sterol elimination and low cholesterol synthesis.
Eur J Clin Invest
10
:
27
–35,
1980
26.
Glasgow AM, August GP, Hung W: Relationship between control and serum lipids in juvenile-onset diabetes.
Diabetes Care
4
:
76
–80,
1981
27.
Bloks VW, Bakker-van Waarde WM, Verkade HJ, Kema IP, Wolters H, Vink E, Groen AK, Kuipers F: Down-regulation of hepatic and intestinal Abcg5 and Abcg8 expression associated with altered sterol fluxes in rats with streptozotocin-induced diabetes.
Diabetologia
47
:
104
–112,
2004
28.
Sutherland WHF, Williams MJA, Nye ER, Restieaux NJ, de Jong SA, Walker HL: Associations of plasma noncholesterol sterol levels with severity of coronary artery disease.
Nutr Metab Cardiovasc Dis
8
:
386
–391,
1998
29.
Rajaratnam RA, Gylling H, Miettinen TA: Independent association of serum squalene and noncholesterol sterols with coronary artery disease in postmenopausal women.
J Am Coll Cardiol
35
:
1185
–1191,
2000
30.
Assmann G, Cullen P, Erbey JR, Ramey DR, Kannenberg F, Schulte H: Elevation in plasma sitosterol concentration is associated with an increased risk for coronary events in the PROCAM Study (Abstract).
Circulation
108
:
IV730
,
2003