Loss of Hepatic Mitochondrial Long-Chain Fatty Acid Oxidation Confers Resistance to Diet-Induced Obesity and Glucose Intolerance.
ABSTRACT: The liver has a large capacity for mitochondrial fatty acid ?-oxidation, which is critical for systemic metabolic adaptations such as gluconeogenesis and ketogenesis. To understand the role of hepatic fatty acid oxidation in response to a chronic high-fat diet (HFD), we generated mice with a liver-specific deficiency of mitochondrial long-chain fatty acid ?-oxidation (Cpt2L-/- mice). Paradoxically, Cpt2L-/- mice were resistant to HFD-induced obesity and glucose intolerance with an absence of liver damage, although they exhibited serum dyslipidemia, hepatic oxidative stress, and systemic carnitine deficiency. Feeding an HFD induced hepatokines in mice, with a loss of hepatic fatty acid oxidation that enhanced systemic energy expenditure and suppressed adiposity. Additionally, the suppression in hepatic gluconeogenesis was sufficient to improve HFD-induced glucose intolerance. These data show that inhibiting hepatic fatty acid oxidation results in a systemic hormetic response that protects mice from HFD-induced obesity and glucose intolerance.
Project description:<h4>Background</h4>Mitochondrial pyruvate import via mitochondrial pyruvate carrier (MPC) is a central step in hepatic gluconeogenesis. Berberine inhibits hepatic gluconeogenesis, but the mechanism is incompletely understood. This study aims to investigate whether berberine could reduce excessive hepatic glucose production (HGP) by limiting mitochondrial import of pyruvate through MPC1.<h4>Methods</h4>High-fat diet (HFD) feeding augmented HGP. The effects of berberine on hepatic fatty acid oxidation, sirtuin3 (SIRT3) induction and mitochondrial pyruvate carrier 1 (MPC1) function were examined.<h4>Findings</h4>HFD feeding increased hepatic acetyl coenzyme A (acetyl CoA) accumulation with impaired pyruvate dehydrogenase (PDH) activity and increased pyruvate carboxylase (PC) induction. Berberine reduced acetyl CoA accumulation by limiting fatty acid oxidation and prevented mitochondrial pyruvate shift from oxidation to gluconeogenesis through carboxylation. Upon pyruvate response, SIRT3 binded to MPC1 and stabilized MPC1 protein via deacetylation modification, facilitating mitochondrial import of pyruvate. Berberine preserved the acetylation of MPC1 by suppression of SIRT3 induction and impaired MPC1 protein stabilization via protein degradation, resultantly limiting mitochondrial pyruvate supply for gluconeogenesis.<h4>Interpretation</h4>Berberine reduced acetyl CoA contents by limiting fatty acid oxidation and increased MPC1 degradation via preserving acetylation, thereby restraining HGP by blocking mitochondrial import of pyruvate. These findings suggest that limitation of mitochondrial pyruvate import might be a therapeutic strategy to prevent excessive hepatic glucose production.
Project description:Pomegranate seed oil (PSO) is mainly composed of punicic acid (PA), a polyunsaturated fatty acid also known as omega-5 (?-5), a potent antioxidant associated with a variety of metabolic and cellular beneficial effects. However, the potential benefits of a nanoemulsified version of ?-5 (PSOn) have not been evaluated in a pathological liver condition. Here, we examined whether PSOn had beneficial effects on C57BL/6N mice fed a high-fat diet (HFD), specifically on hepatic steatosis. We observed that PSOn supplementation decreased body weight and body fat mass in control mice, whereas glucose intolerance, insulin resistance, energy expenditure, and hepatic steatosis were improved in both control mice and in mice fed a HFD. Interestingly, PSOn increased fatty acid oxidation in primary hepatocytes and antioxidant gene expression. Altogether, our data indicate that PSOn effectively reduces some of the HFD-derived metabolic syndrome indicators by means of an increase in fatty acid oxidation within hepatocytes.
Project description:Thioesterase superfamily member 1 (Them1) is an acyl-CoA thioesterase that is highly expressed in brown adipose tissue, where it functions to suppress energy expenditure. Lower Them1 expression levels in the liver are upregulated in response to high-fat feeding. Them1-/- mice are resistant to diet-induced obesity, hepatic steatosis, and glucose intolerance, but the contribution of Them1 in liver is unclear. To examine its liver-specific functions, we created conditional transgenic mice, which, when bred to Them1-/- mice and activated, expressed Them1 exclusively in the liver. Mice with liver-specific Them1 expression exhibited no changes in energy expenditure. Rates of fatty acid oxidation were increased, whereas hepatic VLDL triglyceride secretion rates were decreased by hepatic Them1 expression. When fed a high-fat diet, Them1 expression in liver promoted excess steatosis in the setting of reduced rates of fatty acid oxidation and preserved glycerolipid synthesis. Liver-specific Them1 expression did not influence glucose tolerance or insulin sensitivity, but did promote hepatic gluconeogenesis in high-fat-fed animals. This was attributable to the generation of excess fatty acids, which activated PPAR? and promoted expression of gluconeogenic genes. These findings reveal a regulatory role for Them1 in hepatocellular fatty acid trafficking.
Project description:Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is strongly associated with insulin resistance. The peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR) activators, thiazolidinediones, (TZDs), are insulin sensitizers used as a treatment for NAFLD. However, TZDs are a controversial treatment for NAFLD because of conflicting results regarding hepatic steatosis and fibrosis. To evaluate a possible effective drug for treatment of NAFLD, we investigated the effects of a newly developed TZD, lobeglitazone, with an emphasis on hepatic lipid metabolism. Lobeglitazone treatment for 4 weeks in high fat diet- (HFD-) induced obese mice (HL group) improved insulin resistance and glucose intolerance compared to HFD-induced obese mice (HU group). The gene levels related to hepatic gluconeogenesis also decreased after treatment by lobeglitazone. The livers of mice in the HL group showed histologically reduced lipid accumulation, with lowered total plasma cholesterol and triglyceride levels. In addition, the HL group significantly decreased the hepatic expression of genes associated with lipid synthesis, cholesterol biosynthesis, and lipid droplet development and increased the hepatic expression of genes associated with fatty acid ?-oxidation, thus suggesting that lobeglitazone decreased hepatic steatosis and reversed hepatic lipid dysregulation. Livers with steatohepatitis contained increased levels of PPAR? and phosphorylated PPAR? at serine 273, leading to downregulation of expression of genes associated with insulin sensitivity. Notably, the treatment of lobeglitazone increased the protein levels of PPAR? and diminished levels of PPAR? phosphorylated at serine 273, which were increased by a HFD, suggesting that induction of PPAR? and posttranslational modification of PPAR? in livers by lobeglitazone might be an underlying mechanism of the improvement seen in NAFLD. Taken together, our data showed that lobeglitazone might be an effective treatment for NAFLD.
Project description:Dietary sugars, fructose and glucose, promote hepatic de novo lipogenesis and modify the effects of a high-fat diet (HFD) on the development of insulin resistance. Here, we show that fructose and glucose supplementation of an HFD exert divergent effects on hepatic mitochondrial function and fatty acid oxidation. This is mediated via three different nodes of regulation, including differential effects on malonyl-CoA levels, effects on mitochondrial size/protein abundance, and acetylation of mitochondrial proteins. HFD- and HFD plus fructose-fed mice have decreased CTP1a activity, the rate-limiting enzyme of fatty acid oxidation, whereas knockdown of fructose metabolism increases CPT1a and its acylcarnitine products. Furthermore, fructose-supplemented HFD leads to increased acetylation of ACADL and CPT1a, which is associated with decreased fat metabolism. In summary, dietary fructose, but not glucose, supplementation of HFD impairs mitochondrial size, function, and protein acetylation, resulting in decreased fatty acid oxidation and development of metabolic dysregulation.
Project description:The peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma (PPARgamma) coactivator 1alpha (PGC-1alpha) is a highly inducible transcriptional coactivator implicated in the coordinate regulation of genes encoding enzymes involved in hepatic fatty acid oxidation, oxidative phosphorylation, and gluconeogenesis. The present study sought to assess the effects of chronic PGC-1alpha deficiency on metabolic flux through the hepatic gluconeogenic, fatty acid oxidation, and tricarboxylic acid cycle pathways. To this end, hepatic metabolism was assessed in wild-type (WT) and PGC-1alpha(-/-) mice using isotopomer-based NMR with complementary gene expression analyses. Hepatic glucose production was diminished in PGC-1alpha(-/-) livers coincident with reduced gluconeogenic flux from phosphoenolpyruvate. Surprisingly, the expression of PGC-1alpha target genes involved in gluconeogenesis was unaltered in PGC-1alpha(-/-) compared with WT mice under fed and fasted conditions. Flux through tricarboxylic acid cycle and mitochondrial fatty acid beta-oxidation pathways was also diminished in PGC-1alpha(-/-) livers. The expression of multiple genes encoding tricarboxylic acid cycle and oxidative phosphorylation enzymes was significantly depressed in PGC-1alpha(-/-) mice and was activated by PGC-1alpha overexpression in the livers of WT mice. Collectively, these findings suggest that chronic whole-animal PGC-1alpha deficiency results in defects in hepatic glucose production that are secondary to diminished fatty acid beta-oxidation and tricarboxylic acid cycle flux rather than abnormalities in gluconeogenic enzyme gene expression per se.
Project description:Niemann-Pick C1-Like 1 (NPC1L1) mediates intestinal absorption of dietary and biliary cholesterol. Ezetimibe, by inhibiting NPC1L1 function, is widely used to treat hypercholesterolemia in humans. Interestingly, ezetimibe treatment appears to attenuate hepatic steatosis in rodents and humans without a defined mechanism. Over-consumption of a high-fat diet (HFD) represents a major cause of metabolic disorders including fatty liver. To determine whether and how NPC1L1 deficiency prevents HFD-induced hepatic steatosis, in this study, we fed NPC1L1 knockout (L1-KO) mice and their wild-type (WT) controls an HFD, and found that 24 weeks of HFD feeding causes no fatty liver in L1-KO mice. Hepatic fatty acid synthesis and levels of mRNAs for lipogenic genes are substantially reduced but hepatic lipoprotein-triglyceride production, fatty acid oxidation, and triglyceride hydrolysis remain unaltered in L1-KO versus WT mice. Strikingly, L1-KO mice are completely protected against HFD-induced hyperinsulinemia under both fed and fasted states and during glucose challenge. Despite similar glucose tolerance, L1-KO relative WT mice are more insulin sensitive and in the overnight-fasted state display significantly lower plasma glucose concentrations. In conclusion, NPC1L1 deficiency in mice prevents HFD-induced fatty liver by reducing hepatic lipogenesis, at least in part, through attenuating HFD-induced insulin resistance, a state known to drive hepatic lipogenesis through elevated circulating insulin levels.
Project description:In the fasted state, induction of hepatic glucose output and fatty acid oxidation is essential to sustain energetic balance. Production and oxidation of glucose and fatty acids by the liver are controlled through a complex network of transcriptional regulators. Among them, the transcriptional coactivator PGC-1alpha plays an important role in hepatic and systemic glucose and lipid metabolism. We have previously demonstrated that sirtuin 1 (SIRT1) regulates genes involved in gluconeogenesis through interaction and deacetylation of PGC-1alpha. Here, we show in vivo that hepatic SIRT1 is a factor in systemic and hepatic glucose, lipid, and cholesterol homeostasis. Knockdown of SIRT1 in liver caused mild hypoglycemia, increased systemic glucose and insulin sensitivity, and decreased glucose production. SIRT1 knockdown also decreased serum cholesterol and increased hepatic free fatty acid and cholesterol content. These metabolic phenotypes caused by SIRT1 knockdown tightly correlated with decreased expression of gluconeogenic, fatty acid oxidation and cholesterol degradation as well as efflux genes. Additionally, overexpression of SIRT1 reversed many of the changes caused by SIRT1 knockdown and depended on the presence of PGC-1alpha. Interestingly, most of the effects of SIRT1 were only apparent in the fasted state. Our results indicate that hepatic SIRT1 is an important factor in the regulation of glucose and lipid metabolism in response to nutrient deprivation. As these pathways are dysregulated in metabolic diseases, SIRT1 may be a potential therapeutic target to control hyperglycemia and hypercholesterolemia.
Project description:Although it is well-established that reductions in the ratio of insulin to glucagon in the portal vein have a major role in the dysregulation of hepatic glucose metabolism in type-2 diabetes1-3, the mechanisms by which glucagon affects hepatic glucose production and mitochondrial oxidation are poorly understood. Here we show that glucagon stimulates hepatic gluconeogenesis by increasing the activity of hepatic adipose triglyceride lipase, intrahepatic lipolysis, hepatic acetyl-CoA content and pyruvate carboxylase flux, while also increasing mitochondrial fat oxidation-all of which are mediated by stimulation of the inositol triphosphate receptor 1 (INSP3R1). In rats and mice, chronic physiological increases in plasma glucagon concentrations increased mitochondrial oxidation of fat in the liver and reversed diet-induced hepatic steatosis and insulin resistance. However, these effects of chronic glucagon treatment-reversing hepatic steatosis and glucose intolerance-were abrogated in Insp3r1 (also known as Itpr1)-knockout mice. These results provide insights into glucagon biology and suggest that INSP3R1 may represent a target for therapies that aim to reverse nonalcoholic fatty liver disease and type-2 diabetes.
Project description:Hepatic glutathione S-transferases (GSTs) are dysregulated in human obesity, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, and diabetes. The multifunctional GST pi-isoform (GSTP) catalyzes the conjugation of glutathione with acrolein and inhibits c-Jun NH2-terminal kinase (JNK) activation. Herein, we tested whether GSTP deficiency disturbs glucose homeostasis in mice. Hepatic GST proteins were downregulated by short-term high-fat diet in wild-type (WT) mice concomitant with increased glucose intolerance, JNK activation, and cytokine mRNAs in the liver. Genetic deletion of GSTP did not affect body composition, fasting blood glucose levels, or insulin levels in mice maintained on a normal chow diet; however, compared with WT mice, the GSTP-null mice were glucose intolerant. In GSTP-null mice, pyruvate intolerance, reflecting increased hepatic gluconeogenesis, was accompanied by elevated levels of activated JNK, cytokine mRNAs, and glucose-6-phosphatase proteins in the liver. Treatment of GSTP-null mice with the JNK inhibitor 1,9-pyrazoloanthrone (SP600125) significantly attenuated pyruvate-induced hepatic gluconeogenesis and significantly altered correlations between hepatic cytokine mRNAs and metabolic outcomes in GSTP-null mice. Collectively, these findings suggest that hepatic GSTP plays a pivotal role in glucose handling by regulating JNK-dependent control of hepatic gluconeogenesis. Thus, hepatic GSTP-JNK dysregulation may be a target of new therapeutic interventions during early stages of glucose intolerance to prevent the worsening metabolic derangements associated with human obesity and its relentless progression to diabetes.