Maria C. de Beer, Ph.D

Bio / Education: 

Ph.D. University of Stellenbosch, South Africa, 1992

Research Description: 

My research focuses on HDL metabolism during the acute phase, interaction with cell surface receptors and the development of atherosclerosis. Specific interests are how HDL size and composition changes during the acute phase with a particular focus on the acute phase reactant serum amyloid A protein (SAA), an apoprotein of HDL. To that end a mouse model was generated where the two major SAA isoforms, SAA1.1 and SAA2.1 were deleted. This mouse model is currently employed to gain a better understanding of lipoprotein metabolism during the acute phase and the role of SAA in diseases like atherogenesis and aneurysm utilizing in vitro systems like cell culture to study the flux of lipids between cells and extracellular molecules, as well as in vivo systems such as reverse cholesterol transport during the acute phase.

Selected Publications: 

De Beer, M.C.;Wroblewski, J.M.;Noffsinger, V.P.;Rateri, D.L.;Howatt, D.A.;Balakrishnan, A.;Ji, A.;Shridas, P.;Thompson, J.C.;Westhuyzen, D.R.;Tannock, L.R.;Daugherty, A.;Webb, N.R.;Beer, F.C. "Deficiency of endogenous acute phase serum amyloid A does not affect atherosclerotic lesions in apolipoprotein E-deficient mice." Arteriosclerosis, thrombosis, and vascular biology 34, 2 (2014): 255-61.

De Beer, M.C., Webb, N. R., Wroblewski, J. M., Noffsinger, V., Retari, D. L., Ji A., van der Westhuyzen, D. R., and de Beer, F. C. Impact of serum amyloid A on high density lipoprotein composition and levels. J. Lipid Res. 2010; 51:3117-3125.

Eckhardt, E.R.M. Witta, J., Zhong, J., Arsenescu, R., Arsenescu, V., Wang, Y., Ghoshal, S., de Beer, M.C., de Beer, F.C., and de Villiers, W. J. S. Intestinal epithelial serum amyloid A modulates bacterial growth in vitro and pro-inflammatory responses in mouse experimental colitis. Gastroenterology 2010; 10:133

De Beer, M.C., Ji A., Jahangiri, A., Vaughan, A. M., de Beer, F.C., van der Westhuyzen, D. R. and Webb, N. R. ATP binding cassette G1- dependent cholesterol efflux during inflammation. J. Lipid Res. 2011; 52: 345 – 353.

Ji A., Meyer J. A., Cai, L., Akinmusire A., de Beer M. C., Webb N. R. and van der Westhuyzen, D. R. Scavenger receptor SR-BI in macrophage lipid metabolism. Atherosclerosis 2011; 217: 106-112.

Chiba T., Chang M. Y., Wang S., Wight, T. N., McMillan T. S., Oram J. F., Vaisar T., Heninecke J. W., de Beer, F. C., de Beer M. C., and Chait A. Serum amyloid A facilitates the binding of high-density lipoprotein from mice injected with lipopolysaccharide to vascular proteoglycans. Arterioscler. Thromb. Vasc. Biol. 2011; 31: 1326-1332.

Ji A., Wroblewski, J. M., Cai, L., de Beer M. C., Webb N. R and van der
Westhuyzen, D. R. Nascent HDL formation in hepatocytes and role of ABCA1,
ABCG1 and SR-BI. J. Lipid Res. 2011, 53:446-455.

De Beer, M.C., Webb, N.R. Whitaker, N.L., Wroblewski, J.M., Jahangiri, A., Van der Westhuyzen, D.R. and De Beer, F.C. SR-BI selective lipid uptake: subsequent metabolism of acute phase HDL. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2009; 29:1298-303

De Beer M.C., Van der Westhuyzen D.R., Whitaker N.L., Webb N.R. and De Beer F.C. SR-BI-mediated selective lipid uptake segregates apoA-I and apoA-II catabolism. J Lipid Res. 2005;46:2143-50.

De Beer, M.C., Castellani, L.W., Cai, L., Stromberg, A.J., de Beer, F.C., Van der Westhuyzen, D.R. ApoA-II modulates the association of HDL with class B scavenger receptors SR-BI and CD36. J Lipid Res. 2004. 45: 706-715.

PubMed Publications: 

  • Kim, M.H.;De Beer, M.C.;Wroblewski, J.M.;Charnigo, R.J.;Ji, A.;Webb, N.R.;Beer, F.C.;Westhuyzen, D.R. "Impact of individual acute phase serum amyloid A isoforms on HDL metabolism in mice." Journal of lipid research 57, 6 (2016): 969-79. [PubMed Link] | [ Full text ]