Cholesteryl esters, the major lipid in the lesions of human atherosclerosis, occurred in fatty streaks and fibrous plaques from 42 adults as spherical inclusions whose diameters averaged 1.99 ± 0.48 and 2.16 ± 0.62 μ, respectively, and which with polarizing light microscopy resolved into a mixture of various proportions of anisotropic and isotropic forms. Anisotropic forms had diameters of 1.9 ± 0.4 μ, uniaxial like symmetry with a formee cross image, a whitish gray interference color under cross polarizer and analyzer, second order blue and first order yellow interference colors with a tint plate, a birefringence of 0.0412 ± 0.0054 and a refractive index of 1.559 ± 0.0014. Their probable structural organization is primarily a lyotropic smectic mesophase (liquid crystal) of cholesteryl esters secondarily organized into multiple concentric lamellae. Isotropic forms had diameters of 2.3 ± 0.6 μ and were optically inactive irrespective of their orientation. At 23 C, fatty streak inclusions from 21 subjects averaged significantly higher in the proportion of anisotropic forms, 85.5 ± 9.3%, than did fibrous plaque inclusions from 21 subjects, which had 32.4 ± 16.3% anisotropic forms (P < 0.01).
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||34|
|Journal||American Journal of Pathology|
|State||Published - 1974|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine