Centrifugation of a sucrose homogenate of the livers of female albino rats fed a 1.5% orotic acid diet for 3 wk yielded a pellicle containing low density structures. In morphology and biochemical properties these structures resembled those portions of endoplasmic reticulum which accumulated lipid. Electron microscopy indicated large droplets of lipid bounded by a membrane with attached ribosome-like particles. The presence of ribosomes in these structures was established by treatment with deoxycholate and centrifugation. The proportion of 18S and 29S RNA was the same as that found in the ribosomes from normal liver; however, the distribution of radioactivity between the 18S and the 29S RNA after injection of 8-14C-adenine was distinctly different. The RNA isolated from these structures contained a higher guanylic acid to cytidylic acid ratio than that found in the microsomes of the normal liver. It is proposed that these low density structures may be those portions of the endoplasmic reticulum in which there exists a defect responsible for the block in the assembly or secretion of plasma lipoprotein.

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