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Pennington Biomedical Discovery Changes Way of Looking at Hormone Linked to Weight Loss

August 14, 2014

Researchers at Pennington Biomedical Research Center have discovered a new pathway that controls how our bodies respond to a diet that’s low in protein.  This finding could improve treatments for obesity and diabetes. Data collected by Chris Morrison, PhD and his team of researchers at Pennington Biomedical provides a new explanation for why protein intake profoundly influences metabolism and body weight. They found that in both mice and humans the amount of protein in the diet affects a hormone known as FGF21. If protein consumption is restricted, the body increases production of FGF21. Mice lacking the FGF21 hormone did not … Read More »

Categories: News Tags: Pennington Biomedical Research Center

FGF21 is an Endocrine Signal of Protein Restriction

August 14, 2014

Abstract Enhanced fibroblast growth factor 21 (FGF21) production and circulation has been linked to the metabolic adaptation to starvation. We show that circulating FGF21 levels are increased by dietary protein restriction, but not energy restriction, via a mechanism that includes activation of the eIF2α kinase general control nonderepressible 2 (GCN2). While protein restriction altered food intake, energy expenditure, and body weight gain in wildtype mice, FGF21-deficient animals did not exhibit these changes in response to a LP diet. These data demonstrate that reduced protein intake underlies the increase in circulating FGF21 in response to starvation, and that FGF21 is an … Read More »

Categories: Publications Tags: Pennington Biomedical Research Center

Changes in Body Weight and Health-Related Quality of Life: 2 Cohorts of US Women

August 1, 2014

Abstract This study followed 52,682 women aged 46–71 years in the Nurses’ Health Study (in 1992–2000) and 52,587 women aged 29–46 years in the Nurses’ Health Study II (in 1993–2001). Body weight was self-reported, Health-related quality of life (HRQoL) was measured by the Medical Outcomes Study’s 36-Item Short Form Health Survey, and both were updated every 4 years. The relationship between changes in weight and HRQoL scores was evaluated at 4-year intervals by using a generalized linear regression model with multivariate adjustment for baseline age, ethnicity, menopausal status, and changes in comorbidities and lifestyle factors. Key Findings Weight gain of … Read More »

Categories: Publications Tags: Boston

IRF4 is a Key Thermogenic Transcriptional Partner of PGC-1a

July 3, 2014

Abstract Brown fat can reduce obesity through the dissipation of calories as heat. Control of thermogenic gene expression occurs via the induction of various coactivators, most notably PGC-1α. In contrast, the transcription factor partner(s) of these cofactors are poorly described. Here, we identify interferon regulatory factor 4 (IRF4) as a dominant transcriptional effector of thermogenesis. IRF4 is induced by cold and cAMP in adipocytes and is sufficient to promote increased thermogenic gene expression, energy expenditure, and cold tolerance. Conversely, knockout of IRF4 in UCP1(+) cells causes reduced thermogenic gene expression and energy expenditure, obesity, and cold intolerance. IRF4 also induces … Read More »

Categories: Publications Tags: Boston

Null Mutation in Hormone-Sensitive Lipase Gene and Risk of Type 2 Diabetes

June 12, 2014

Abstract Lipolysis regulates energy homeostasis through the hydrolysis of intracellular triglycerides and the release of fatty acids for use as energy substrates or lipid mediators in cellular processes. Genes encoding proteins that regulate energy homeostasis through lipolysis are thus likely to play an important role in determining susceptibility to metabolic disorders.  To identify genetic regulators of lipolysis, we sequenced 12 lipolytic-pathway genes in Amish subjects with extreme high or low fasting serum triglyceride levels were at the extremes of the distribution and identified a novel 19-bp frameshift deletion in exon 9 of LIPE, encoding hormone-sensitive lipase (HSL), a key enzyme … Read More »

Categories: Publications Tags: Mid-Atlantic Maryland

Mutation in Fat-Storage Gene Appears to Increase Type 2 Diabetes Risk

May 22, 2014

Abstract A mutation in a fat-storage gene has been identified that appears to increase the risk for type 2 diabetes and other metabolic disorders, according to a study. Type 2 diabetes is a complex disease whose susceptibility is often determined by interactions between genetics and lifestyle factors, such as overeating and physical inactivity. Susceptibility genes for diabetes may be involved in several different metabolic pathways in the body, including storage and release of fat for energy. Read More Science Daily Research Details Research Center: Mid-Atlantic, Maryland

Categories: News Tags: Mid-Atlantic Maryland

Nicotinamide N-Methyltransferase Knockdown Protects Against Diet-Induced Obesity

April 10, 2014

Abstract In obesity and type 2 diabetes, Glut4 glucose transporter expression is decreased selectively in adipocytes. Adipose-specific knockout or overexpression of Glut4 alters systemic insulin sensitivity. Here we show, using DNA array analyses, that nicotinamide N-methyltransferase (Nnmt) is the most strongly reciprocally regulated gene when comparing gene expression in white adipose tissue (WAT) from adipose-specific Glut4-knockout or adipose-specific Glut4-overexpressing mice with their respective controls. Thus, NNMT is a novel regulator of histone methylation, polyamine flux and NAD(+)-dependent SIRT1 signalling, and is a unique and attractive target for treating obesity and type 2 diabetes. Citation Kraus D, Yang Q, Kong D, … Read More »

Categories: Publications Tags: Boston

Pleiotropic Effects of Cavin-1 Deficiency on Lipid Metabolism

March 21, 2014

Abstract Mice and humans lacking caveolae have numerous pathologies including markedly aberrant fuel metabolism, lipodystrophy, and muscular dystrophy. Characterization of the physiologic/metabolic profile of cavin-1 knock-out mice suggests that dysfunction in fat, muscle, and liver metabolism in cavin-1-null mice causes a pleiotropic phenotype, one apparently identical to that of humans lacking caveolae in all tissues. Citation: Ding SY, Lee MJ, Summer R, Liu L, Fried SK, Pilch PF. Pleiotropic effects of cavin-1 deficiency on lipid metabolism. J Biol Chem. 2014 Mar 21;289(12):8473-83.  PMID: 24509860; PMCID: PMC3961672. Read More Journal of Biological Chemistry Research Details Research Center: Boston Center Contribution: This … Read More »

Categories: Publications Tags: Boston

What it Takes to Get People to Adopt Healthier Behaviors

March 19, 2014

Deborah Tate wants not only to help people battle obesity but those just trying to stay healthy. She works at the intersection of diet, exercise, research and technology. Dr. Tate is the Core Director for the UNC NORC’s CHAI Core. She is a cognitive-behavioral psychologist whose primary interests lie in obesity prevention, treatment and behavioral interventions. She has developed and evaluated several of the first randomized trials using the Internet, e-mail and other online technologies to deliver behavioral treatments for obesity. She also continues to conduct a series of studies to determine which features of Internet weight control programs contribute … Read More »

Categories: Videos Tags: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Canonical Nlrp3 Inflammasome Links Systemic Low-Grade Inflammation to Functional Decline in Aging

October 1, 2013

Abstract This paper queries the causal links between systemic inflammation and aging, and details a mechanism by which the Nlrp3 inflammasome controls systemic low-grade age-related “sterile” inflammation. Ablation of Nlrp3 inflammasome protected mice from age-related increases in the innate immune activation, alterations in CNS transcriptome, astrogliosis, and improved glycemic control, and attenuated both bone loss and thymic demise. Citation Youm YH, Grant RW, McCabe LR, Albarado DC, Nguyen KY, Ravussin A, Pistell P, Newman S, Carter R, Laque A, Münzberg H, Rosen CJ, Ingram DK, Salbaum JM, Dixit VD. Canonical Nlrp3 inflammasome links systemic low-grade inflammation to functional decline in … Read More »

Categories: Publications Tags: Pennington Biomedical Research Center