Small chylomicrons (CM) labeled with cholesterol, cholesterol ester, phospholipid, and, in some cases, protein, were used to study the fate of these constituents as the CM are catabolized in the circulations of the hepatectomized and intact rat. In the hepatectomized animal after ½ h, CM are greatly reduced in volume, surface area, and diameter. During this period, the CM lost >92% of the mass of their triacylglycerol, >77% of the mass of their phospholipid, and >39% of their protein. Compared to the injected CM, the chemically altered particles, called CM “remnants,” have a reduction in volume of 96% and in surface area of 88%. The labeled cholesterol esters remain with the CM remnants but, strikingly, a major fraction of the labeled phospholipids and labeled soluble apoproteins leave the CM and are found in the high density lipoprotein (HDL) fraction.
T. G. Redgrave, D. M. Small