Project description:Evidence suggests that altered gut microbiota composition may be involved in the development of obesity. Studies using mice made obese with refined high-fat diets have supported this; however, these have commonly used chow as a control diet, introducing confounding factors from differences in dietary composition that have a key role in shaping microbiota composition. We compared the effects of feeding a refined high-fat diet with those of feeding either a refined low-fat diet or a chow diet on gut microbiota composition and host physiology. Feeding both refined low- or high-fat diets resulted in large alterations in the gut microbiota composition, intestinal fermentation, and gut morphology, compared to a chow diet. However, body weight, body fat, and glucose intolerance only increased in mice fed the refined high-fat diet. The choice of control diet can dissociate broad changes in microbiota composition from obesity, raising questions about the previously proposed relationship between gut microbiota and obesity.
Project description:It is well known that the microbiota of high-fat (HF) diet-induced obese mice differs from that of lean mice, but to what extent, this difference reflects the obese state or the diet is unclear. To dissociate changes in the gut microbiota associated with high HF feeding from those associated with obesity, we took advantage of the different susceptibility of C57BL/6JBomTac (BL6) and 129S6/SvEvTac (Sv129) mice to diet-induced obesity and of their different responses to inhibition of cyclooxygenase (COX) activity, where inhibition of COX activity in BL6 mice prevents HF diet-induced obesity, but in Sv129 mice accentuates obesity.Using HiSeq-based whole genome sequencing, we identified taxonomic and functional differences in the gut microbiota of the two mouse strains fed regular low-fat or HF diets with or without supplementation with the COX-inhibitor, indomethacin. HF feeding rather than obesity development led to distinct changes in the gut microbiota. We observed a robust increase in alpha diversity, gene count, abundance of genera known to be butyrate producers, and abundance of genes involved in butyrate production in Sv129 mice compared to BL6 mice fed either a LF or a HF diet. Conversely, the abundance of genes involved in propionate metabolism, associated with increased energy harvest, was higher in BL6 mice than Sv129 mice.The changes in the composition of the gut microbiota were predominantly driven by high-fat feeding rather than reflecting the obese state of the mice. Differences in the abundance of butyrate and propionate producing bacteria in the gut may at least in part contribute to the observed differences in obesity propensity in Sv129 and BL6 mice.
Project description:High phenotypic variation in diet-induced obesity in male C57BL/6J inbred mice suggests a molecular model to investigate non-genetic mechanisms of obesity. Feeding mice a high-fat diet beginning at 8 wk of age resulted in a 4-fold difference in adiposity. The phenotypes of mice characteristic of high or low gainers were evident by 6 wk of age, when mice were still on a low-fat diet; they were amplified after being switched to the high-fat diet and persisted even after the obesogenic protocol was interrupted with a calorically restricted, low-fat chow diet. Accordingly, susceptibility to diet-induced obesity in genetically identical mice is a stable phenotype that can be detected in mice shortly after weaning. Chronologically, differences in adiposity preceded those of feeding efficiency and food intake, suggesting that observed difference in leptin secretion is a factor in determining phenotypes related to food intake. Gene expression analyses of adipose tissue and hypothalamus from mice with low and high weight gain, by microarray and qRT-PCR, showed major changes in the expression of genes of Wnt signaling and tissue re-modeling in adipose tissue. In particular, elevated expression of SFRP5, an inhibitor of Wnt signaling, the imprinted gene MEST and BMP3 may be causally linked to fat mass expansion, since differences in gene expression observed in biopsies of epididymal fat at 7 wk of age (before the high-fat diet) correlated with adiposity after 8 wk on a high-fat diet. We propose that C57BL/6J mice have the phenotypic characteristics suitable for a model to investigate epigenetic mechanisms within adipose tissue that underlie diet-induced obesity.
Project description:Previous studies demonstrated that diet-induced obesity increased plasma angiotensin II concentrations and elevated systolic blood pressures in male mice. Adipocytes express angiotensinogen and secrete angiotensin peptides. We hypothesize that adipocyte-derived angiotensin II mediates obesity-induced increases in systolic blood pressure in male high fat-fed C57BL/6 mice. Systolic blood pressure was measured by radiotelemetry during week 16 of low-fat or high-fat feeding in Agt(fl/fl) and adipocyte angiotensinogen-deficient mice (Agt(aP2)). Adipocyte angiotensinogen deficiency had no effect on diet-induced obesity. Basal 24-hour systolic blood pressure was not different in low fat-fed Agt(fl/fl) compared with Agt(aP2) mice (124 ± 3 versus 128 ± 3 mm Hg, respectively). In Agt(fl/fl) mice, high-fat feeding significantly increased systolic blood pressure (24 hours; 134 ± 2 mm Hg; P<0.05). In contrast, high fat-fed Agt(aP2) mice did not exhibit an increase in systolic blood pressure (126 ± 2 mm Hg). Plasma angiotensin II concentrations were increased by high-fat feeding in Agt(fl/fl) mice (low fat, 32 ± 14; high fat, 219 ± 58 pg/mL; P<0.05). In contrast, high fat-fed Agt(aP2) mice did not exhibit elevated plasma angiotensin II concentrations (high fat, 18 ± 7 pg/mL). Similarly, adipose tissue concentrations of angiotensin II were significantly decreased in low fat- and high fat-fed Agt(aP2) mice compared with controls. In conclusion, adipocyte angiotensinogen deficiency prevented high fat-induced elevations in plasma angiotensin II concentrations and systolic blood pressure. These results suggest that adipose tissue serves as a major source of angiotensin II in the development of obesity hypertension.
Project description:Uncoupling protein 2 (UCP2) maps to a region on distal mouse chromosome 7 that has been linked to the phenotypes of obesity and type II diabetes. We recently reported that UCP2 expression is increased by high fat feeding in adipose tissue of the A/J strain of mice, which is resistant to the development of dietary obesity. More recently, a third UCP (UCP3) was identified, which is expressed largely in skeletal muscle and brown adipose tissue. The UCP2 and UCP3 genes are located adjacent to one another on mouse chromosome 7. Thus, the roles of these UCPs in both metabolic efficiency and the linkage to obesity and diabetes syndromes is unclear. For this reason, we examined the expression of UCP2 and UCP3 in white adipose tissue and interscapular brown adipose tissue and in gastrocnemius/soleus muscle preparations from the obesity-resistant A/J and C57BL/KsJ (KsJ) strains and the obesity-prone C57BL/6J (B6) mouse strain. In both KsJ and A/J mice, UCP2 expression in white fat was increased approximately 2-fold in response to 2 weeks of a high fat diet, but there was no effect of diet on UCP2 levels in B6 mice. In skeletal muscle and in brown fat, neither UCP2 nor UCP3 expression was affected by diet in A/J, B6, or KsJ mice. However, in brown fat, we observed a 2-3-fold increase in the expression of UCP1 in response to dietary fat challenge, which may be related to diet-induced elevations in plasma leptin levels. Together, these results indicate that the consumption of a high fat diet selectively regulates UCP2 expression in white fat and UCP1 expression in brown fat and that resistance to obesity is correlated with this early, selective induction of UCP1 and UCP2 and is not associated with changes in expression of UCP3.
Project description:To test the hypothesis that high-fat (HF) diet-induced obesity increases proinflammatory cytokine expression, macrophage infiltration, and M1 polarization in the infrapatellar fat pad (IFP) prior to knee cartilage degeneration.We characterized the effect of HF feeding on knee OA pathology, body adiposity, and glucose intolerance in male C57BL/6J mice and identified a diet duration that induces metabolic dysfunction prior to cartilage degeneration. Magnetic resonance imaging and histomorphology were used to quantify changes in the epididymal, subcutaneous, and infrapatellar fat pads and in adipocyte sizes. Finally, we used targeted gene expression and protein arrays, immunohistochemistry, and flow cytometry to quantify differences in fat pad markers of inflammation and immune cell populations.Twenty weeks of feeding with an HF diet induced marked obesity, glucose intolerance, and early osteoarthritis (OA), including osteophytes and cartilage tidemark duplication. This duration of HF feeding increased the IFP volume. However, it did not increase IFP inflammation, macrophage infiltration, or M1 macrophage polarization as observed in epididymal fat. Furthermore, leptin protein levels were reduced. This protection from obesity-induced inflammation corresponded to increased IFP fibrosis and the absence of adipocyte hypertrophy.The IFP does not recapitulate classic abdominal adipose tissue inflammation during the early stages of knee OA in an HF diet-induced model of obesity. Consequently, these findings do not support the hypothesis that IFP inflammation is an initiating factor of obesity-induced knee OA. Furthermore, the profibrotic and antihypertrophic responses of IFP adipocytes to HF feeding suggest that intraarticular adipocytes are subject to distinct spatiotemporal structural and metabolic regulation among fat pads.
Project description:Over two-thirds of adults in the United States are obese or overweight, which is largely due to chronic overconsumption of diets high in fats and sugars (i.e., Western diet). Recent studies reveal that maternal obesity may predispose offspring to development of obesity and other metabolic diseases; however, the molecular underpinnings of these outcomes are largely unknown. The endocannabinoid system is an important signaling pathway that controls feeding behavior and energy homeostasis, and its activity becomes upregulated in the upper small intestinal epithelium of Western diet-induced obese mice, which drives overeating. In the current investigation, we examined the impact of chronic maternal consumption of Western diet on the expression and function of the endocannabinoid system in several peripheral organs important for food intake and energy homeostasis in offspring. Female C57BL/6Tac mice were fed a Western diet or low-fat/no-sucrose control chow for 10 weeks, then males were introduced for mating. Dams were maintained on their respective diets through weaning of pups, at which time pups were maintained on low-fat/no-sucrose chow for 10 weeks. Neonates born from dams fed Western diet, when compared to those born from mice fed control chow, unexpectedly displayed increases in mortality that occurred exclusively within six days following birth (greater than 50% mortality). Males comprised a larger fraction of surviving offspring from obese dams. Furthermore, surviving offspring displayed transient increases in body mass for first two days post weaning, and no marked changes in feeding patterns and endocannabinoid levels in upper small intestinal epithelium, pancreas, and plasma, or in expression of key endocannabinoid system genes in the upper small intestinal epithelium and pancreas at 10 weeks post-weaning. Collectively, these results suggest that maternal diet composition greatly influences survival of neonate C57BL/6Tac mice, and that surviving offspring from dams chronically fed a Western diet do not display marked changes in body mass, eating patterns, or expression and function of the endocannabinoid system in several peripheral organs important for feeding behavior and energy homeostasis.
Project description:Mechanisms underlying changes in HDL composition caused by obesity are poorly defined, partly because mice lack expression of cholesteryl ester transfer protein (CETP), which shuttles triglyceride and cholesteryl ester between lipoproteins. Because menopause is associated with weight gain, altered glucose metabolism, and changes in HDL, we tested the effect of feeding a high-fat diet (HFD) and ovariectomy (OVX) on glucose metabolism and HDL composition in CETP transgenic mice. After OVX, female CETP-expressing mice had accelerated weight gain with HFD-feeding and impaired glucose tolerance by hyperglycemic clamp techniques, compared with OVX mice fed a low-fat diet (LFD). Sham-operated mice (SHAM) did not show HFD-induced weight gain and had less glucose intolerance than OVX mice. Using shotgun HDL proteomics, HFD-feeding in OVX mice had a large effect on HDL composition, including increased levels of apoA2, apoA4, apoC2, and apoC3, proteins involved in TG metabolism. These changes were associated with decreased hepatic expression of SR-B1, ABCA1, and LDL receptor, proteins involved in modulating the lipid content of HDL. In SHAM mice, there were minimal changes in HDL composition with HFD feeding. These studies suggest that the absence of ovarian hormones negatively influences the response to high-fat feeding in terms of glucose tolerance and HDL composition. CETP-expressing mice may represent a useful model to define how metabolic changes affect HDL composition and function.
Project description:Obesity is a highly heritable disease driven by complex interactions between genetic and environmental factors. Human genome-wide association studies (GWAS) have identified a number of loci contributing to obesity; however, a major limitation of these studies is the inability to assess environmental interactions common to obesity. Using a systems genetics approach, we measured obesity traits, global gene expression, and gut microbiota composition in response to a high-fat/high-sucrose (HF/HS) diet of more than 100 inbred strains of mice. Here we show that HF/HS feeding promotes robust, strain-specific changes in obesity that are not accounted for by food intake and provide evidence for a genetically determined set point for obesity. GWAS analysis identified 11 genome-wide significant loci associated with obesity traits, several of which overlap with loci identified in human studies. We also show strong relationships between genotype and gut microbiota plasticity during HF/HS feeding and identify gut microbial phylotypes associated with obesity.
Project description:Obesity-induced inflammation presumably accelerates the development of chronic kidney diseases. However, little is known about the sequence of these inflammatory events and their contribution to renal pathology. We investigated the effects of obesity on the evolution of age-dependent renal complications in mice in conjunction with the development of renal and systemic low-grade inflammation (LGI). C57BL/6J mice susceptible to develop age-dependent sclerotic pathologies with amyloid features in the kidney, were fed low (10% lard) or high-fat diets (45% lard) for 24, 40 and 52 weeks. HFD-feeding induced overt adiposity, altered lipid and insulin homeostasis, increased systemic LGI and adipokine release. HFD-feeding also caused renal upregulation of pro-inflammatory genes, infiltrating macrophages, collagen I protein, increased urinary albumin and NGAL levels. HFD-feeding severely aggravated age-dependent structural changes in the kidney. Remarkably, enhanced amyloid deposition rather than sclerosis was observed. The degree of amyloidosis correlated significantly with body weight. Amyloid deposits stained positive for serum amyloid A (SAA) whose plasma levels were chronically elevated in HFD mice. Our data indicate obesity-induced chronic inflammation as a risk factor for the acceleration of age-dependent renal amyloidosis and functional impairment in mice, and suggest that obesity-enhanced chronic secretion of SAA may be the driving factor behind this process.