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Busnelli, Marco; Manzini, Stefano; Parolini, Cinzia; Escalante-Alcalde, Diana; Chiesa, Giulia (2018)


Atherosclerosis 271():156-165
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LPP3 is an integral membrane protein belonging to a family of enzymes (LPPs) that display broad substrate specificity and catalyse dephosphorylation of several lipid substrates, including lysophosphatidic acid and sphingosine-1-phosphate. In mammals, the LPP family consists of three enzymes named LPP1, LPP2 and LPP3, which are encoded by three independent genes, PLPP1, PLPP2 and PLPP3, respectively (formerly known as PPAP2A, PPAP2C, PPAP2B). These three enzymes, in vitro, do not seem to differ for catalytic activities and substrate preferences. However, in vivo targeted inactivation of the individual genes has indicated that the enzymes do not have overlapping functions and that LPP3, specifically, plays a crucial role in vascular development. In 2011, two genome-wide association studies have identified PLPP3 as a novel locus associated with coronary artery disease susceptibility. Shortly after these reports, tissue specific inactivation of PLPP3 in mice highlighted a specific role for LPP3 in vascular pathophysiology and, more recently, in atherosclerosis development. This review is aimed at providing an updated overview on the function of LPP3 in embryonic cardiovascular development and on the experimental and clinical evidences relating this enzyme to vascular cell functions and cardiovascular disease.