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  • Author: Ling Yang x
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Galya Vassileva, Weiwen Hu, Lizbeth Hoos, Glen Tetzloff, Shijun Yang, Li Liu, Ling Kang, Harry R Davis, Joseph A Hedrick, Hong Lan, Timothy Kowalski and Eric L Gustafson

G-protein-coupled bile acid receptor 1 (GPBAR1/TGR5/M-Bar/GPR131) is a cell surface receptor involved in the regulation of bile acid metabolism. We have previously shown that Gpbar1-null mice are resistant to cholesterol gallstone disease when fed a lithogenic diet. Other published studies have suggested that Gpbar1 is involved in both energy homeostasis and glucose homeostasis. Here, we examine the functional role of Gpbar1 in diet-induced obese mice. We found that body weight, food intake, and fasted blood glucose levels were similar between Gpbar1-null mice and their wild-type (WT) littermates when fed a chow or high-fat diet (HFD) for 2 months. However, insulin tolerance tests revealed improved insulin sensitivity in male Gpbar1 −/− mice fed chow, but impaired insulin sensitivity when fed a HFD. In contrast, female Gpbar1 −/− mice exhibited improved insulin sensitivity when fed a HFD compared with their WT littermates. Female Gpbar1 −/− mice had significantly lower plasma cholesterol and triglyceride levels than their WT littermates on both diets. Male Gpbar1 −/− mice on HFD displayed increased hepatic steatosis when compared with Gpbar1 + / + males and Gpbar1 −/− females on HFD. These results suggest a gender-dependent regulation of Gpbar1 function in metabolic disease.

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Dang-Dang Li, Ying-Jie Gao, Xue-Chao Tian, Zhan-Qing Yang, Hang Cao, Qiao-Ling Zhang, Bin Guo and Zhan-Peng Yue

Tryptophan 2,3-dioxygenase (T do 2) is a rate-limiting enzyme which directs the conversion of tryptophan to kynurenine. The aim of this study was to examine the expression and regulation of T do 2 in mouse uterus during decidualization. T do 2 mRNA was mainly expressed in the decidua on days 6–8 of pregnancy. By real-time PCR, a high level of T do 2 expression was observed in the uteri from days 6 to 8 of pregnancy, although T do 2 expression was observed on days 1–8. Simultaneously, T do 2 mRNA was also detected under in vivo and in vitro artificial decidualization. Estrogen, progesterone, and 8-bromoadenosine-cAMP could induce the expression of T do 2 in the ovariectomized mouse uterus and uterine stromal cells. T do 2 could regulate cell proliferation and stimulate the expression of decidual marker Dtprp in the uterine stromal cells and decidual cells. Overexpression of T do 2 could upregulate the expression of Ahr, Cox2, and Vegf genes in uterine stromal cells, while T do 2 inhibitor 680C91 could downregulate the expression of Cox2 and Vegf genes in uterine decidual cells. These data indicate that T do 2 may play an important role during mouse decidualization and be regulated by estrogen, progesterone, and cAMP.

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Chun-Hsien Chu, Bor-Show Tzang, Li-Mien Chen, Chia-Hua Kuo, Yi-Chang Cheng, Ling-Yun Chen, Fuu-Jen Tsai, Chang-Hai Tsai, Wei-Wen Kuo and Chih-Yang Huang

The role played by IGF-II in signal transduction through the IGF-II/mannose-6-phosphate receptor (IGF2R) in heart tissue has been poorly understood. In our previous studies, we detected an increased expression of IGF-II and IGF2R in cardiomyocytes that had undergone pathological hypertrophy. We hypothesized that after binding with IGF-II, IGF2R may trigger intracellular signaling cascades involved in the progression of pathologically cardiac hypertrophy. In this study, we used immunohistochemical analysis of the human cardiovascular tissue array to detect expression of IGF2R. In our study of H9c2 cardiomyoblast cell cultures, we used the rhodamine phalloidin staining to measure the cell hypertrophy and western blot to measure the expression of cardiac hypertrophy markers atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) and brain natriuretic peptide (BNP) in cells treated with IGF-II. We found that a significant association between IGF2R overexpression and myocardial infarction. The treatment of H9c2 cardiomyoblast cells with IGF-II not only induced cell hypertrophy but also increased the protein level of ANP and BNP. Using Leu27IGF-II, an analog of IGF-II which interacts selectively with the IGF2R, to specifically activate IGF2R signaling cascades, we found that binding of Leu27IGF-II to IGF2R led to an increase in the phosphorylation of protein Kinase C (PKC)-α and calcium/calmodulin-dependent protein kinase II (CaMKII) in a Gαq-dependent manner. By the inhibition of PKC-α/CaMKII activity, we found that IGF-II and Leu27IGF-II-induced cell hypertrophy and upregulation of ANP and BNP were significantly suppressed. Taken together, this study provides a new insight into the effects of the IGF2R and its downstream signaling in cardiac hypertrophy. The suppression of IGF2R signaling pathways may be a good strategy to prevent the progression of pathological hypertrophy.

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Thomas H Claus, Clark Q Pan, Joanne M Buxton, Ling Yang, Jennifer C Reynolds, Nicole Barucci, Michael Burns, Astrid A Ortiz, Steve Roczniak, James N Livingston, Kevin B Clairmont and James P Whelan

Type 2 diabetes is characterized by reduced insulin secretion from the pancreas and overproduction of glucose by the liver. Glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) promotes glucose-dependent insulin secretion from the pancreas, while glucagon promotes glucose output from the liver. Taking advantage of the homology between GLP-1 and glucagon, a GLP-1/glucagon hybrid peptide, dual-acting peptide for diabetes (DAPD), was identified with combined GLP-1 receptor agonist and glucagon receptor antagonist activity. To overcome its short plasma half-life DAPD was PEGylated, resulting in dramatically prolonged activity in vivo. PEGylated DAPD (PEG-DAPD) increases insulin and decreases glucose in a glucose tolerance test, evidence of GLP-1 receptor agonism. It also reduces blood glucose following a glucagon challenge and elevates fasting glucagon levels in mice, evidence of glucagon receptor antagonism. The PEG-DAPD effects on glucose tolerance are also observed in the presence of the GLP-1 antagonist peptide, exendin(9–39). An antidiabetic effect of PEG-DAPD is observed in db/db mice. Furthermore, PEGylation of DAPD eliminates the inhibition of gastrointestinal motility observed with GLP-1 and its analogues. Thus, PEG-DAPD has the potential to be developed as a novel dual-acting peptide to treat type 2 diabetes, with prolonged in vivo activity, and without the GI side-effects.

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Wang-Yang Xu, Yan Shen, Houbao Zhu, Junhui Gao, Chen Zhang, Lingyun Tang, Shun-Yuan Lu, Chun-Ling Shen, Hong-Xin Zhang, Ziwei Li, Peng Meng, Ying-Han Wan, Jian Fei and Zhu-Gang Wang

Obesity and type 2 diabetes (T2D) are both complicated endocrine disorders resulting from an interaction between multiple predisposing genes and environmental triggers, while diet and exercise have key influence on metabolic disorders. Previous reports demonstrated that 2-aminoadipic acid (2-AAA), an intermediate metabolite of lysine metabolism, could modulate insulin secretion and predict T2D, suggesting the role of 2-AAA in glycolipid metabolism. Here, we showed that treatment of diet-induced obesity (DIO) mice with 2-AAA significantly reduced body weight, decreased fat accumulation and lowered fasting glucose. Furthermore, Dhtkd1−/− mice, in which the substrate of DHTKD1 2-AAA increased to a significant high level, were resistant to DIO and obesity-related insulin resistance. Further study showed that 2-AAA induced higher energy expenditure due to increased adipocyte thermogenesis via upregulating PGC1α and UCP1 mediated by β3AR activation, and stimulated lipolysis depending on enhanced expression of hormone-sensitive lipase (HSL) through activating β3AR signaling. Moreover, 2-AAA could alleviate the diabetic symptoms of db/db mice. Our data showed that 2-AAA played an important role in regulating glycolipid metabolism independent of diet and exercise, implying that improving the level of 2-AAA in vivo could be developed as a strategy in the treatment of obesity or diabetes.