Key role of L-alanine in the control of hepatic protein synthesis.
ABSTRACT: We investigated the effects of administration of single amino acids to starved rats on the regulation of protein synthesis in the liver. Of all the amino acids tested, only alanine, ornithine and proline promoted statistically significant increases in the extent of hepatic polyribosome aggregation. The most effective of these was alanine, whose effect of promoting polyribosomal aggregation was accompanied by a decrease in the polypeptide-chain elongation time. The following observations indicate that alanine plays an important physiological role in the regulation of hepatic protein synthesis. Alanine was the amino acid showing the largest decrease in hepatic content in the transition from high (fed) to low (starved) rates of protein synthesis. The administration of glucose or pyruvate is also effective in increasing liver protein synthesis in starved rats, and their effects were accompanied by an increased hepatic alanine content. An increase in hepatic ornithine content does not lead to an increased protein synthesis, unless it is accompanied by an increase of alanine. The effect of alanine is observed either in vivo, in rats pretreated with cycloserine to prevent its transamination, or in isolated liver cells under conditions in which its metabolic transformation is fully impeded.
Project description:1. Various aspects of triacylglycerol metabolism were compared in rats given phenobarbital at a dose of 100mg/kg body wt. per day by intraperitoneal injection; controls were injected with an equal volume of 0.15m-NaCl by the same route. Animals were killed after 5 days of treatment. 2. Rats injected with phenobarbital demonstrated increased liver weight, and increased microsomal protein per g of liver. Other evidence of microsomal enzyme induction was provided by increased activity of aminopyrine N-demethylase and cytochrome P-450 content. Increased hepatic activity of gamma-glutamyltransferase (EC 22.214.171.124) occurred in male rats, but not in females, and was not accompanied by any detectable change in the activity of this enzyme in serum. 3. Phenobarbital treatment increased the hepatic content of triacylglycerol after 5 days in starved male and female rats, as well as in non-starved male rats; non-starved females were not tested in this regard. At 5 days after withdrawal of the drug, there was no difference in hepatic triacylglycerol content or in hepatic functions of microsomal enzyme induction between the treated and control rats. 4. After 5 days, phenobarbital increased the synthesis in vitro of glycerolipids in cell-free liver fractions fortified with optimal concentrations of substrates and co-substrates when results were expressed per whole liver. The drug caused a significant increment in the activity of hepatic diacylglycerol acyltransferase (EC 126.96.36.199), but did not affect the activity per liver of phosphatidate phosphohydrolase (EC 188.8.131.52) in cytosolic or washed microsomal fractions. A remarkable sex-dependent difference was observed for this latter enzyme. In female rats, the activity of the microsomal enzyme per liver was 10-fold greater than that of the cytosolic enzyme, whereas in males, the activities of phosphohydrolases per liver from both subcellular fractions were similar. 5. The phenobarbital-mediated increase in hepatic triacylglycerol content could not be explained by a decrease in the hepatic triacylglycerol secretion rate as measured by the Triton WR1339 technique. Since the hepatic triacylglycerol showed significant correlation with microsomal enzyme induction functions, with hepatic glycerolipid synthesis in vitro and with diacylglycerol acyltransferase activity, it is likely to be due to enhanced triacylglycerol synthesis consequent on hepatic microsomal enzyme induction. 6. In contrast with rabbits and guinea pigs, rats injected with phenobarbital showed a decrease in serum triacylglycerol concentration in the starved state; this decrease persisted for up to 5 days after drug administration stopped, and did not occur in non-starved animals. It seems to be independent of the microsomal enzyme-inducing properties of the drug, and may be due to the action of phenobarbital at an extrahepatic site.
Project description:The non-metabolizable amino acids alpha-aminoisobutyric acid (AIB) and cycloleucine and the poorly metabolizable amino acid D-alanine potently stimulated hepatic ornithine decarboxylase (ODC) activity in starved rats. The stimulation by AIB was shown to have several of the characteristics of stimulation by a protein meal and occurred in hypophysectomized animals. AIB also stimulated renal, but not brain or heart, ODC activity.
Project description:1. With reference to the post-operative dysfunction of the liver observed after halothane anaesthesia, the effects of the anaesthetic on some metabolic functions were studied in the isolated perfused rat liver. Oxygen uptake, glycolysis, gluconeogenesis and urea synthesis were affected by halothane at a concentration (2.5% of the gas phase) within the range used in clinical anaesthesia. 2. At this concentration of halothane uptake of oxygen was inhibited in livers from both fed and starved rats. 3. In livers from fed rats there was a 16-fold increase in lactate production. This was accompanied by a fivefold decrease in the tissue content of 2-oxoglutarate and a more than twofold decrease in citrate. The calculated [free NAD(+)]/[free NADH] ratio in both cytoplasm and mitochondria was lower in the halothane-exposed livers than in controls. 4. In livers of starved rats the rate of gluconeogenesis from lactate was decreased by halothane to 30% of the control rate. 5. Halothane inhibited gluconeogenesis from alanine and propionate to the same extent as from lactate, whereas glucose formation from dihydroxyacetone, glycerol, fructose and sorbitol was relatively unaffected. 6. During gluconeogenesis from 10mm-lactate the tissue content of ATP was decreased by 50%, glutamate by 50% and 2-oxoglutarate was decreased eightfold in the halothane-exposed livers. 7. Halothane decreased urea synthesis in the presence of 10mm-NH(4)Cl and 2mm-ornithine to 15% of the control rate. 8. The inhibitions of gluconeogenesis and urea synthesis were completely abolished within 15min of withdrawal of the anaesthetic. 9. The stimulation of uptake of oxygen brought about by the addition of lactate or precursors of urea was abolished by halothane. 10. Effects on gluconeogenesis similar to those of halothane occurred in livers exposed to the anaesthetic methoxyflurane, although normal rates were not restored on withdrawal of the drug. Other anaesthetic agents tested (ketamine-HCl and trichloroethylene) decreased gluconeogenesis to 66% of the control rate. 11. The inhibitory effects of halothane are consistent with an interference at the stage of the NADH dehydrogenase of the electron-transport chain.
Project description:Antizyme to ornithine decarboxylase (ODC) and ODC-antizyme complex were both present in liver cytosols of starved rats. The antizyme was identified by its molecular weight, kinetic properties, formation of a complex with ODC, and reversal of its inhibition by antizyme inhibitor. The average amount of antizyme in liver cytosols of starved rats was 0.1 unit/mg of protein, roughly corresponding to basal hepatic ODC activity in rats fed ad libitum. The presence of ODC-antizyme complex was detected by using antizyme inhibitor. These results indicate that antizyme participates in the regulation of ODC activity in vivo under physiological conditions.
Project description:1. Concentrations of polyamines, amino acids, glycogen, nucleic acids and protein, and activities of ornithine decarboxylase and S-adenosylmethionine decarboxylase, were measured in livers from control, streptozotocin-diabetic and insulin-treated diabetic rats. 2. Total DNA per liver and protein per mg of DNA were unaffected by diabetes, whereas RNA per mg of DNA and glycogen per g of liver were decreased. Insulin treatment of diabetic rats induced both hypertrophy and hyperplasia, as indicated by an increase in all four of these constituents to or above control values. 3. Spermidine content was increased in the livers of diabetic rats, despite the decrease in RNA, but it was further increased by insulin treatment. Spermine content was decreased by diabetes, but was unchanged by insulin treatment. Thus the ratio spermidine/spermine in the adult diabetic rat was more typical of that seen in younger rats, whereas insulin treatment resulted in a ratio similar to that seen in rapidly growing tissues. 4. Ornithine decarboxylase activity was variable in the diabetic rat, showing a positive correlation with endogenous ornithine concentrations. This correlation was not seen in control or insulin-treated rats. Insulin caused a significant increase in ornithine decarboxylase activity relative to control or diabetic rats. 5. S-Adenosylmethionine decarboxylase activity was increased approx. 2-fold by diabetes and was not further affected by insulin. 6. Hepatic concentrations of the glucogenic amino acids, alanine, glutamine and glycine were decreased by diabetes. Their concentrations and that of glutamate were increased by injection of insulin. Concentrations of ornithine, proline, leucine, isoleucine and valine were increased in livers of diabetic rats and were decreased by insulin. Diabetes caused a decrease in hepatic concentration of serine, threonine, lysine and histidine. Insulin had no effect on serine, lysine and histidine, but caused a further fall in the concentration of threonine.
Project description:Starvation caused a marked increase in putrescine content in mammary gland of lactating rats, together with a marked decrease in activity of ornithine decarboxylase and appearance of measurable ornithine decarboxylase antizyme. 2. Refeeding for 5 h caused disappearance of free antizyme and ornithine decarboxylase activity returned to the value in fed animals. Putrescine concentration remained elevated. 3. There was no significant change in nucleic acid content of mammary gland from starved rats, but spermidine and spermine contents increased significantly. 4. Refeeding for 5 h returned the spermidine content of mammary glands to 'fed' values, and significantly decreased the content of spermine, although it did not reach control values. Thus changes in polyamine content of mammary gland in starved rats are clearly dissociated from changes in either RNA content or activities of polyamine-synthetic decarboxylases. 5. Starvation caused a fall in the content of spermidine in liver, with no change in spermine content. Refeeding for 5 h returned the spermidine content to 'fed' values.
Project description:1. 3-Mercaptopicolinic acid (SK&F 34288) inhibited gluconeogenesis in vitro, with lactate as substrate, in rat kidney-cortex and liver slices. 2. In perfused rat livers, gluconeogenesis was inhibited when lactate, pyruvate or alanine served as substrate, but not with fructose, suggesting pyruvate carboxylase or phosphoenolpyruvate carboxylase as the site of inhibition. No significant effects were evident in O(2) consumption, hepatic glycogen, urea production, or [lactate]/[pyruvate] ratios. 3. A hypoglycaemic effect was evident in vivo in starved and alloxan-diabetic rats, starved guinea pigs and starved mice, but not in 4h-post-absorptive rats. 4. In the starved rat the hypoglycaemia was accompanied by an increase in blood lactate. 5. A trace dose of [(14)C]lactate in vivo was initially oxidized to a lesser extent in inhibitor-treated rats, but during 90min the total CO(2) evolved was slightly greater. The total amount of the tracer oxidized was not significantly different from that in the controls.
Project description:1. Factors governing hepatic utilization of alanine were studied in vivo and in vitro in rats adapted to increasing dietary protein. 2. Hepatic alanine utilization was enhanced 5-fold with a 90%-casein diet, compared with a 13%-casein diet. The increased uptake resulted from enhanced fractional extraction in the presence of high concentrations of alanine in the portal vein. 3. The increase in alanine metabolism on high-protein diets was associated with an increase in alanine aminotransferase and in pyruvate utilization for gluconeogenesis. 4. The emergence of a high-affinity component appeared to be responsible for the enhanced transport of alanine with high-protein diets. 5. High extracellular concentrations after alanine loads resulted in a maximal rate of utilization and of accumulation of alanine by liver cells in vivo and in vitro. Alanine accumulation was particularly active with high-protein diets. 6. In starved rats, alanine transport was also increased, but low concentrations of alanine in afferent blood contributed to make transport limiting for alanine utilization. 7. In fed rats, the rates of transport and catabolism of alanine generally appear to undergo parallel changes; both processes thus play a fundamental role in the control of alanine utilization by the liver.
Project description:Rat liver ornithine decarboxylase activity was decreased by administration of putrescine (1,4-diaminobutane) or other diamines, including 1,3-diaminopropane, 1,5-diaminopentane and 1,6-diaminohexane. This effect was seen in control rats and in rats in which hepatic ornithine decarboxylase activity had been increased by administration of growth hormone (somatotropin) or thioacetamide. Loss of activity was not dependent on the conversion of putrescine into polyamines and was short-lived. Within 6h after intraperitoneal administration of 0.8 mmol/kg body wt., ornithine decarboxylase activity had returned to normal values. This return correlated with the rapid loss of the diamines from the liver, and the decrease in activity could be slightly prolonged by treatment with aminoguanidine, a diamine oxidase inhibitor. A decrease in ornithine decarboxylase activity by these diamines was accompanied by the accumulation in the liver of a nondiffusible inhibitor that decreased the activity of a purified ornithine decarboxylase preparation. The possibility that administration of non-physiological diamines that are not converted into polyamines might be useful for the inhibition of polyamine synthesis is discussed.
Project description:1. Weanling male and female rats were undernourished for 4 weeks and then rehabilitated by allowing ad libitum feeding. 2. During rehabilitation polyamine-biosynthetic enzymes were examined in the liver, spleen and quadriceps and gastrocnemius muscles. 3. During the first few hours of rehabilitiation there was a marked increase in liver weight, accompanied by a very marked increase in ornithine decarboxylase activity. Increases in the activity of this enzyme in other tissues did not occur until between 2 and 7 days of rehabilitation, at which time there were further increases in enzyme activity in the liver. 4. S-Adenosylmethionine decarboxylase activity also showed marked fluctuations in activity in all the tissues examined. 5. Hepatic putrescine and spermidine concentrations also varied during rehabilitation, but permine concentration remained relatively constant. Both spermine and spermidine were at normal concentrations in the liver from the 10th days of rehabilitation onwards. 6. In all of the tissues examined there were marked sex differences in the parameters studied, particularly in splenic and muscular ornithine decarboxylase activity. 7. In the tissues of the male rats, changes in polyamine synthesis paralled changes in nucleic acid and protein synthesis.