Project description:Lipid droplets (LD) play a central role in lipid homeostasis by controlling transient fatty acid (FA) storage and release from triacylglycerols stores, while preventing high levels of cellular toxic lipids. This crucial function in oxidative tissues is altered in obesity and type 2 diabetes. Perilipin 5 (PLIN5) is a LD protein whose mechanistic and causal link with lipotoxicity and insulin resistance has raised controversies. We investigated here the physiological role of PLIN5 in skeletal muscle upon various metabolic challenges. We show that PLIN5 protein is elevated in endurance-trained (ET) subjects and correlates with muscle oxidative capacity and whole-body insulin sensitivity. When overexpressed in human skeletal muscle cells to recapitulate the ET phenotype, PLIN5 diminishes lipolysis and FA oxidation under basal condition, but paradoxically enhances FA oxidation during forskolin- and contraction- mediated lipolysis. Moreover, PLIN5 partly protects muscle cells against lipid-induced lipotoxicity. In addition, we demonstrate that down-regulation of PLIN5 in skeletal muscle inhibits insulin-mediated glucose uptake under normal chow feeding condition, while paradoxically improving insulin sensitivity upon high-fat feeding. These data highlight a key role of PLIN5 in LD function, first by finely adjusting LD FA supply to mitochondrial oxidation, and second acting as a protective factor against lipotoxicity in skeletal muscle.
Project description:UCP3's exact physiological function in lipid handling in skeletal and cardiac muscle remains unknown. Interestingly, etomoxir, a fat oxidation inhibitor and strong inducer of UCP3, is proposed for treating both diabetes and heart failure. We hypothesize that the upregulation of UCP3 upon etomoxir serves to protect mitochondria against lipotoxicity. To evaluate UCP3's role in skeletal muscle (skm) and heart under lipid-challenged conditions, the effect of UCP3 ablation was examined in a state of dysbalance between fat availability and oxidative capacity. Wild type (WT) and UCP3(-/-) mice were subjected to high-fat feeding for 14 days. From day 6 onwards, they were given either saline or etomoxir. Etomoxir treatment induced an increase in markers of lipotoxicity in skm compared to saline. This increase upon etomoxir was similar for both, WT and UCP3(-/-) mice, suggesting that UCP3 does not play a role in protection against lipotoxicity. Interestingly, we observed 25 % mortality in UCP3(-/-)s upon etomoxir administration vs. 11 % in WTs. This increased mortality in UCP3(-/-) compared to WT mice could not be explained by differences in cardiac lipotoxicity, apoptosis, fibrosis (histology, immunohistochemistry), oxidative capacity (respirometry) or function (echocardiography). Electrophysiology demonstrated, however, prolonged QRS and QTc intervals and greater susceptibility to ventricular tachycardia upon programmed electrical stimulation in etomoxir-treated UCP3(-/-)s versus WTs. Isoproterenol administration after pacing resulted in 75 % mortality in UCP3(-/-)s vs. 14 % in WTs. Our results argue against a protective role for UCP3 on skm metabolism under lipid overload, but suggest UCP3 to be crucial in prevention of arrhythmias upon lipid-challenged conditions.
Project description:According to the concept of lipotoxicity, ectopic accumulation of lipids in non-adipose tissue induces pathological changes. The most prominent effects are seen in fatty liver disease, lipid cardiomyopathy, non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus, insulin resistance and skeletal muscle myopathy. We used the MCK(m)-hLPL mouse distinguished by skeletal and cardiac muscle-specific human lipoprotein lipase (hLPL) overexpression to investigate effects of lipid overload in skeletal muscle. We were intrigued to find that ectopic lipid accumulation induced proteasomal activity, apoptosis and skeletal muscle damage. In line with these findings we observed reduced Musculus gastrocnemius and Musculus quadriceps mass in transgenic animals, accompanied by severely impaired physical endurance. We suggest that muscle loss was aggravated by impaired muscle regeneration as evidenced by reduced cross-sectional area of regenerating myofibers after cardiotoxin-induced injury in MCK(m)-hLPL mice. Similarly, an almost complete loss of myogenic potential was observed in C2C12 murine myoblasts upon overexpression of LPL. Our findings directly link lipid overload to muscle damage, impaired regeneration and loss of performance. These findings support the concept of lipotoxicity and are a further step to explain pathological effects seen in muscle of obese patients, patients with the metabolic syndrome and patients with cancer-associated cachexia.
Project description:The mechanisms underlying the protective effect of monounsaturated fatty acids (e.g. oleate) against the lipotoxic action of saturated fatty acids (e.g. palmitate) in skeletal muscle cells remain poorly understood. This study aimed to examine the role of mitochondrial long-chain fatty acid (LCFA) oxidation in mediating oleate's protective effect against palmitate-induced lipotoxicity. CPT1 (carnitine palmitoyltransferase 1), which is the key regulatory enzyme of mitochondrial LCFA oxidation, is inhibited by malonyl-CoA, an intermediate of lipogenesis. We showed that expression of a mutant form of CPT1 (CPT1mt), which is active but insensitive to malonyl-CoA inhibition, in C2C12 myotubes led to increased LCFA oxidation flux even in the presence of high concentrations of glucose and insulin. Furthermore, similar to preincubation with oleate, CPT1mt expression protected muscle cells from palmitate-induced apoptosis and insulin resistance by decreasing the content of deleterious palmitate derivates (i.e. diacylglycerols and ceramides). Oleate preincubation exerted its protective effect by two mechanisms: (i) in contrast to CPT1mt expression, oleate preincubation increased the channeling of palmitate toward triglycerides, as a result of enhanced diacylglycerol acyltransferase 2 expression, and (ii) oleate preincubation promoted palmitate oxidation through increasing CPT1 expression and modulating the activities of acetyl-CoA carboxylase and AMP-activated protein kinase. In conclusion, we demonstrated that targeting mitochondrial LCFA oxidation via CPT1mt expression leads to the same protective effect as oleate preincubation, providing strong evidence that redirecting palmitate metabolism toward oxidation is sufficient to protect against palmitate-induced lipotoxicity.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Chronic metabolic overload leads to insulin resistance in a variety of tissues. It has been shown that exposure to saturated fatty acid palmitate can cause insulin resistance in skeletal muscle cells. Fatty acid induced synthesis of ceramide is considered to be one of the major causes for insulin resistance. Both de novo synthesis and sphingomyelin hydrolysis by sphingomyelinase are implicated for ceramide generation. Aim of this study was to evaluate the impact of neutral sphingomyelinase (nSMase) inhibition on saturated fatty acid induced lipotoxicity and insulin resistance in skeletal muscle myotubes. RESULTS: Treatment of saturated fatty acid (palmitate) but not unsaturated fatty acid (oleate) caused an up-regulation in expression of various nSMase genes which are associated with ceramide synthesis through the salvage pathway. Inhibition of nSMase by a pharmacological inhibitor (GW4869) partially reverted the palmitate induced insulin resistance in C2C12 myotubes. Inhibition of nSMase improved metabolic functions of myotubes as measured by improved oxidative capacity in terms of increased mitochondrial number, PGC1? expression and ATP levels with concomitant decrease in intramyocellular triglyceride levels. Palmitate induced inflammatory response was also reduced by nSMase inhibitor. GW4869 treatment reduced palmitate induced oxidative and endoplasmic reticulum stress and improved cell survival. CONCLUSION: In this study, we provide evidences that inhibition of nSMase can protect skeletal muscles from saturated fatty acid induced insulin resistance, metabolic dysfunction, cellular stress and inflammation.
Project description:The Arroyo Seco 2 site contains a rich archaeological record, exceptional for South America, to explain the expansion of Homo sapiens into the Americas and their interaction with extinct Pleistocene mammals. The following paper provides a detailed overview of material remains found in the earliest cultural episodes at this multi-component site, dated between ca. 12,170 14C yrs B.P. (ca. 14,064 cal yrs B.P.) and 11,180 14C yrs B.P. (ca. 13,068 cal yrs B.P.). Evidence of early occupations includes the presence of lithic tools, a concentration of Pleistocene species remains, human-induced fractured animal bones, and a selection of skeletal parts of extinct fauna. The occurrence of hunter-gatherers in the Southern Cone at ca. 14,000 cal yrs B.P. is added to the growing list of American sites that indicate a human occupation earlier than the Clovis dispersal episode, but posterior to the onset of the deglaciation of the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) in the North America.
Project description:Homo sapiens and naked mole rats (Heterocephalus glaber) are vivid examples of social mammals that differ from their relatives in particular by an increased lifespan and a large number of neotenic features. An important fact for biogerontology is that the mortality rate of H. glaber (a maximal lifespan of more than 32 years, which is very large for such a small rodent) negligibly grows with age. The same is true for modern people in developed countries below the age of 60. It is important that the juvenilization of traits that separate humans from chimpanzees evolved over thousands of generations and millions of years. Rapid advances in technology resulted in a sharp increase in the life expectancy of human beings during the past 100 years. Currently, the human life expectancy has exceeded 80 years in developed countries. It cannot be excluded that the potential for increasing life expectancy by an improvement in living conditions will be exhausted after a certain period of time. New types of geroprotectors should be developed that protect not only from chronic phenoptosis gradual poisoning of the body with reactive oxygen species (ROS) but also from acute phenoptosis, where strong increase in the level of ROS immediately kills an already aged individual. Geroprotectors might be another anti-aging strategy along with neoteny (a natural physiological phenomenon) and technical progress.
Project description:Cortical thickness has been investigated since the beginning of the 20th century, but we do not know how similar the cortical thickness profiles among humans are. In this study, the local similarity of cortical thickness profiles was investigated using sliding window methods. Here, we show that approximately 5% of the cortical thickness profiles are similarly expressed among humans while 45% of the cortical thickness profiles show a high level of heterogeneity. Therefore, heterogeneity is the rule, not the exception. Cortical thickness profiles of somatosensory homunculi and the anterior insula are consistent among humans, while the cortical thickness profiles of the motor homunculus are more variable. Cortical thickness profiles of homunculi that code for muscle position and skin stimulation are highly similar among humans despite large differences in sex, education, and age. This finding suggests that the structure of these cortices remains well preserved over a lifetime. Our observations possibly relativize opinions on cortical plasticity.
Project description:Leukotriene B4 (LTB4) production via the 5-lipoxygenase (5-LO) pathway contributes to the development of insulin resistance in adipose and hepatic tissues, but the role of LTB4 in skeletal muscle is relatively unknown. Here, the authors investigated the role of LTB4 in C2C12 myotubes in palmitic acid (PA)-induced ER stress, inflammation and insulin resistance. PA (750??M) evoked lipotoxicity (ER stress, oxidative stress, inflammation and insulin resistance) in association with LTB4 production. 5-LO inhibition reduced all the lipotoxic effects induced by PA. On the other hand, PA did not induce cysteinyl leukotrienes (CysLTs), which themselves had no effect on ER stress and inflammation. The beneficial effects of 5-LO suppression from PA-induced lipotoxicity were related with AMPK activation. In ob/ob mice, once daily oral administration of zileuton (50, 100?mg/kg) for 5 weeks improved insulin resistance, increased AMPK phosphorylation, and reduced LTB4 and ER stress marker expression in skeletal muscle. These results show that 5-LO inhibition by either zileuton or 5-LO siRNA protects C2C12 myotubes from PA-induced lipotoxicity, at least partly via AMPK activation, and suggest that the in vivo insulin-sensitizing effects of zileuton are in part attributable to its direct action on skeletal muscle via LTB4 downregulation followed by AMPK activation.