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1.  Adipose tissue gene expression analysis reveals changes in inflammatory, mitochondrial respiratory and lipid metabolic pathways in obese insulin-resistant subjects 
Background
To get insight into molecular mechanisms underlying insulin resistance, we compared acute in vivo effects of insulin on adipose tissue transcriptional profiles between obese insulin-resistant and lean insulin-sensitive women.
Methods
Subcutaneous adipose tissue biopsies were obtained before and after 3 and 6 hours of intravenously maintained euglycemic hyperinsulinemia from 9 insulin-resistant and 11 insulin-sensitive females. Gene expression was measured using Affymetrix HG U133 Plus 2 microarrays and qRT-PCR. Microarray data and pathway analyses were performed with Chipster v1.4.2 and by using in-house developed nonparametric pathway analysis software.
Results
The most prominent difference in gene expression of the insulin-resistant group during hyperinsulinemia was reduced transcription of nuclear genes involved in mitochondrial respiration (mitochondrial respiratory chain, GO:0001934). Inflammatory pathways with complement components (inflammatory response, GO:0006954) and cytokines (chemotaxis, GO:0042330) were strongly up-regulated in insulin-resistant as compared to insulin-sensitive subjects both before and during hyperinsulinemia. Furthermore, differences were observed in genes contributing to fatty acid, cholesterol and triglyceride metabolism (FATP2, ELOVL6, PNPLA3, SREBF1) and in genes involved in regulating lipolysis (ANGPTL4) between the insulin-resistant and -sensitive subjects especially during hyperinsulinemia.
Conclusions
The major finding of this study was lower expression of mitochondrial respiratory pathway and defective induction of lipid metabolism pathways by insulin in insulin-resistant subjects. Moreover, the study reveals several novel genes whose aberrant regulation is associated with the obese insulin-resistant phenotype.
doi:10.1186/1755-8794-5-9
PMCID: PMC3384471  PMID: 22471940
2.  Silencing of ANGPTL 3 (angiopoietin-like protein 3) in human hepatocytes results in decreased expression of gluconeogenic genes and reduced triacylglycerol-rich VLDL secretion upon insulin stimulation 
Bioscience Reports  2014;34(6):e00160.
Homozygosity of loss-of-function mutations in ANGPTL3 (angiopoietin-like protein 3)-gene results in FHBL2 (familial combined hypolipidaemia, OMIM #605019) characterized by the reduction of all major plasma lipoprotein classes, which includes VLDL (very-low-density lipoprotein), LDL (low-density lipoprotein), HDL (high-density lipoprotein) and low circulating NEFAs (non-esterified fatty acids), glucose and insulin levels. Thus complete lack of ANGPTL3 in humans not only affects lipid metabolism, but also affects whole-body insulin and glucose balance. We used wild-type and ANGPTL3-silenced IHHs (human immortalized hepatocytes) to investigate the effect of ANGPTL3 silencing on hepatocyte-specific VLDL secretion and glucose uptake. We demonstrate that both insulin and PPARγ (peroxisome-proliferator-activated receptor γ) agonist rosiglitazone down-regulate the secretion of ANGPTL3 and TAG (triacylglycerol)-enriched VLDL1-type particles in a dose-dependent manner. Silencing of ANGPTL3 improved glucose uptake in hepatocytes by 20–50% and influenced down-regulation of gluconeogenic genes, suggesting that silencing of ANGPTL3 improves insulin sensitivity. We further show that ANGPTL3-silenced cells display a more pronounced shift from the secretion of TAG-enriched VLDL1-type particles to secretion of lipid poor VLDL2-type particles during insulin stimulation. These data suggest liver-specific mechanisms involved in the reported insulin-sensitive phenotype of ANGPTL3-deficient humans, featuring lower plasma insulin and glucose levels.
We show that silencing of ANGPTL3 in human hepatocytes in addition to reducing secretion of TAG-enriched VLDL upon insulin stimulation enhances glucose uptake and improves insulin response. Thus, our data provide insight into the lower insulin and glucose levels observed in humans with ANGPTL3 loss-of-function mutation.
doi:10.1042/BSR20140115
PMCID: PMC4266921  PMID: 25495645
ANGPTL3 silencing; hypolipidaemia; insulin signalling; liver; rosiglitazone; VLDL; ANGPTL, angiopoietin-like protein; CCD, coiled coil domain; FHBL2, familial combined hypolipidaemia; GLUT2, glucose transporter 2; HDL, high-density lipoprotein; IHH, immortalized human hepatocyte; IR, insulin receptor; IRS, insulin receptor substrate; LDL, low-density lipoprotein; LPL, lipoprotein lipase; NEFA, non-esterified fatty acid; PEPCK, phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase; PGC1α, peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ co-activator 1-α; PI3K, phosphoinositide 3-kinase; PL, phospholipid; PPAR, peroxisome-proliferator-activated receptor; QPCR, quantitative PCR; shRNA, small hairpin RNA; TAG, triacylglycerol; TRB3, tribbles homologue 3; VLDL, very-low-density lipoprotein
3.  Osbpl8 Deficiency in Mouse Causes an Elevation of High-Density Lipoproteins and Gender-Specific Alterations of Lipid Metabolism 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(3):e58856.
OSBP-related protein 8 (ORP8) encoded by Osbpl8 is an endoplasmic reticulum sterol sensor implicated in cellular lipid metabolism. We generated an Osbpl8−/− (KO) C57Bl/6 mouse strain. Wild-type and Osbpl8KO animals at the age of 13-weeks were fed for 5 weeks either chow or high-fat diet, and their plasma lipids/lipoproteins and hepatic lipids were analyzed. The chow-fed Osbpl8KO male mice showed a marked elevation of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol (+79%) and phospholipids (+35%), while only minor increase of apolipoprotein A-I (apoA-I) was detected. In chow-fed female KO mice a less prominent increase of HDL cholesterol (+27%) was observed, while on western diet the HDL increment was prominent in both genders. The HDL increase was accompanied by an elevated level of HDL-associated apolipoprotein E in male, but not female KO animals. No differences between genotypes were observed in lecithin:cholesterol acyltransferase (LCAT) or hepatic lipase (HL) activity, or in the fractional catabolic rate of fluorescently labeled mouse HDL injected in chow-diet fed animals. The Osbpl8KO mice of both genders displayed reduced phospholipid transfer protein (PLTP) activity, but only on chow diet. These findings are consistent with a model in which Osbpl8 deficiency results in altered biosynthesis of HDL. Consistent with this hypothesis, ORP8 depleted mouse hepatocytes secreted an increased amount of nascent HDL into the culture medium. In addition to the HDL phenotype, distinct gender-specific alterations in lipid metabolism were detected: Female KO animals on chow diet showed reduced lipoprotein lipase (LPL) activity and increased plasma triglycerides, while the male KO mice displayed elevated plasma cholesterol biosynthetic markers cholestenol, desmosterol, and lathosterol. Moreover, modest gender-specific alterations in the hepatic expression of lipid homeostatic genes were observed. In conclusion, we report the first viable OsbplKO mouse model, demonstrating a HDL elevating effect of Osbpl8 knock-out and additional gender- and/or diet-dependent impacts on lipid metabolism.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0058856
PMCID: PMC3598917  PMID: 23554939

Results 1-3 (3)