Adipocyte-Specific Expression of PGC1α Promotes Adipocyte Browning and Alleviates Obesity-Induced Metabolic Dysfunction in an HO-1-Dependent Fashion

Shin Hsueh Shen, Shailendra P. Singh, Marco Raffaele, Maayan Waldman, Edith Hochhauser, Juancarlos Ospino, Michael Arad, Stephen J. Peterson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Recent studies suggest that PGC1-α plays a crucial role in mitochondrial and vascular function, yet the physiological significance of PGC1α and HO expression in adipose tissues in the context of obesity-linked vascular dysfunction remains unclear. We studied three groups of sixweek-old C57BL/6J male mice: (1) mice fed a normal chow diet; (2) mice fed a high-fat diet (H.F.D.) for 28 weeks, and (3) mice fed a high-fat diet (H.F.D.) for 28 weeks, treated with adipose-specific overexpression of PGC-1α (transgenic-adipocyte-PGC-1α) at week 20, and continued on H.F.D. for weeks 20–28. R.N.A. arrays examined 88 genes involved in adipocyte proliferation and maturation. Blood pressure, tissue fibrosis, fasting glucose, and oxygen consumption were measured, as well as liver steatosis, and the expression levels of metabolic and mitochondrial markers. Obese mice exhibited a marked reduction of PGC1α and developed adipocyte hypertrophy, fibrosis, hepatic steatosis, and decreased mitochondrial respiration. Mice with adipose-specific overexpression of PGC1-α exhibited improvement in HO-1, mitochondrial biogenesis and respiration, with a decrease in fasting glucose, reduced blood pressure and fibrosis, and increased oxygen consumption. PGC-1α led to the upregulated expression of processes associated with the browning of fat tissue, including UCP1, FGF21, and pAMPK signaling, with a reduction in inflammatory adipokines, NOV/CCN3 expression, and TGFβ. These changes required HO-1 expression. The R.N.A. array analysis identified subgroups of genes positively correlated with contributions to the browning of adipose tissue, all dependent on HO-1. Our observations reveal a positive impact of adipose-PGC1-α on distal organ systems, with beneficial effects on HO-1 levels, reversing obesity-linked cardiometabolic disturbances.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1147
JournalAntioxidants
Volume11
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2022

Keywords

  • brown fat
  • inflammation
  • mitochondria
  • obesity
  • PGC-1α
  • type 2 diabetes

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