The drug ezetimibe blocks the NPC1L1 causing a reduction in cholesterol absorption, resulting in a blood cholesterol reduction of between 15-20%. Polymorphic variations in NPC1L1 gene could be associated with non-response to ezetimibe treatment.
NPC1L1 has been shown to be an accessory receptor for Hepatitis C virus entry into cells, and thus ezetimibe might be used as a therapeutic strategy
^Garcia-Calvo M, Lisnock J, Bull HG, Hawes BE, Burnett DA, Braun MP, et al. The target of ezetimibe is Niemann-Pick C1-Like 1 (NPC1L1). Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2005;102(23):8132-7. PMID 15928087
^Temel, Ryan E., Tang, Weiqing, Ma, Yinyan, Rudel, Lawrence L., Willingham, Mark C., Ioannou, Yiannis A., Davies, Joanna P., Nilsson, Lisa-Mari, Yu, Liqing. Hepatic Niemann-Pick C1-like 1 regulates biliary cholesterol concentration and is a target of ezetimibe J. Clin. Invest. 2007 0: JCI30060