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Sample records for agouti dasyprocta leporina

  1. Interactions Among Different Devices and Electrical Stimulus on the Electroejaculation of Captive Agoutis (Dasyprocta leporina).

    PubMed

    Castelo, T S; Souza, A L P; Lima, G L; Peixoto, G C X; Campos, L B; Oliveira, M F; Silva, A R

    2015-06-01

    The interactions among different electroejaculation devices associated with serial or continuous stimuli were investigated to improve the efficiency of the electroejaculation for semen collection in agoutis. Ten sexually matured male Dasyprocta leporina were restrained by the intramuscular administration of xylazine-ketamine association. Each individual was randomly subjected to four electroejaculation protocols, by combining two devices (one presenting longitudinal electrodes emitting square waves and other presenting ring electrodes emitting sine waves) and two electrical stimuli protocols (serial or continuous). A total of 40 attempts for electroejaculation were conducted in agoutis, being 10 per treatment. The most efficient treatment in providing ejaculates containing sperm (p < 0.05) was that using and electroejaculator connected to a probe with ring electrodes and associated with serial stimuli (4/7; 57%). In spite of semen parameters obtained by sine waves were adequate for using the samples for assisted reproduction, higher values for sperm motility and functional membrane integrity were obtained in the use of the square wave, independently of the electric stimulation protocol used (p < 0.05). In conclusion, we verified that the use of a device presenting a probe with ring electrodes and emitting sine waves, associated with a serial stimuli protocol, improves the efficiency for semen obtaining by electroejaculation in adults D. leporina. PMID:25800458

  2. Comparison among different cryoprotectants for cryopreservation of epididymal sperm from agouti (Dasyprocta leporina).

    PubMed

    Castelo, T S; Silva, A M; Bezerra, L G P; Costa, C Y M; Lago, A E A; Bezerra, J A B; Campos, L B; Praxedes, E C G; Silva, A R

    2015-12-01

    We verify the effects of different cryoprotectants on the cryopreservation of agouti (Dasyprocta leporina) epididymal sperm. We used 16 pairs of testes-epididymis complexes of sexually mature animals. We immediately evaluated epididymal sperm obtained by retrograde flushing for concentration, motility, vigor, viability, osmotic response, and morphology. Samples were extended in a coconut water extender plus 20% egg yolk, containing glycerol, ethylene glycol, dimethylsulfoxide - DMSO, or dimethylformamide. Finally, samples were stored in 0.25 mL straws, frozen in liquid nitrogen, and thawed after one week, being reevaluated and assessed for membrane integrity using fluorescent probes. The higher values for postthawing sperm motility, vigor, and membrane integrity were achieved by the usage of glycerol, when compared to ethylene glycol and dimethylformamide (P < 0.05); however, no differences were found between glycerol and DMSO (P > 0.05). All cryoprotectants provided a similar effect on the preservation of sperm morphology, osmotic response, and viability (P > 0.05). Therefore, here onwards, there was testing of glycerol and DMSO at 3 and 6% concentrations using the same freezing-thawing protocol reported previously. As the main result, DMSO at 6% concentration provided a decrease in sperm parameters, as well as in the chromatin integrity and in the binding capability of sperm. In conclusion, glycerol 3 or 6% and DMSO 3% can be used as alternative cryoprotectants for agouti epididymal sperm cryopreservation. PMID:26408846

  3. Liquid and Frozen Storage of Agouti (Dasyprocta leporina) Semen Extended with UHT Milk, Unpasteurized Coconut Water, and Pasteurized Coconut Water

    PubMed Central

    Mollineau, W. M.; Adogwa, A. O.; Garcia, G. W.

    2011-01-01

    This study evaluated the effects of semen extension and storage on forward progressive motility % (FPM%) in agouti semen. Three extenders were used; sterilized whole cow's milk (UHT Milk), unpasteurized (CW) and pasteurized coconut water (PCW), and diluted to 50, 100, 150, and 200 × 106 spermatozoa/ml. Experiment 1: 200 ejaculates were extended for liquid storage at 5∘C and evaluated every day for 5 days to determine FPM% and its rate of deterioration. Experiment 2: 150 ejaculates were extended for storage as frozen pellets in liquid nitrogen at −195∘C, thawed at 30∘ to 70∘C for 20 to 50 seconds after 5 days and evaluated for FPM% and its rate of deterioration. Samples treated with UHT milk and storage at concentrations of 100 × 106 spermatozoa/ml produced the highest means for FPM% and the slowest rates of deterioration during Experiment 1. During Experiment 2 samples thawed at 30∘C for 20 seconds exhibited the highest means for FPM% (12.18 ± 1.33%), 85% rate of deterioration. However, samples were incompletely thawed. This was attributed to the diameter of the frozen pellets which was 1 cm. It was concluded that the liquid storage method was better for short term storage. PMID:20871831

  4. Fatal anemia and dermatitis in captive agoutis (Dasyprocta mexicana) infested with Echidnophaga fleas.

    PubMed

    Cucchi-Stefanoni, Karina; Juan-Sallés, Carles; Parás, Alberto; Garner, Michael M

    2008-08-17

    Two captive agoutis (Dasyprocta mexicana) died of anemia with centrilobular hepatocellular necrosis (2/2), severe flea ectoparasitism (2/2), and cardiomegaly attributed to anemia (1/2). Other agoutis were similarly parasitized and one had anemia. Fleas were manually removed and all agoutis treated topically with propoxur and selamectin and moved to another enclosure. No additional cases of fatal anemia were seen. Cutaneous lesions suggestive of hypersensitivity were observed in three additional agoutis with dorsal alopecia (3/3), a penetrating wound associated with pruritus and self-mutilation in the flank (2/3), flea ectoparasitism at the time of morphologic diagnosis (1/3), and hyperplastic perivascular dermatitis (3/3). One of these died of bacterial infection of the wound. Similar but milder skin disease was seen in 3 out of over 30 maras (Dolichotis patagonum) housed in the same exhibit. Fleas collected from all the fatal agouti cases and maras were classified in the genus Echidnophaga based on the angular front margin of head, contracted thorax, absence of genal and pronotal combs, and the fact that fleas did not jump. These findings suggest that flea ectoparasitism may be an important cause of morbidity and mortality in captive rodents. PMID:18556127

  5. [Infection induced in wild rodents Dasyprocta leporina (Rodentia: Dasyproctidae), with larval eggs of Lagochilascaris minor (Nematoda: Ascarididae)].

    PubMed

    Volcán, G S; Medrano, C E

    1990-01-01

    Specimens of Dasyprocta leporina (Linnaeus, 1758) were raised out their natural environment. At three to four months of age they were orally inoculated with Lagochilascaris minor (Leiper, 1909) eggs obtained from a native patient. The eggs were incubated for more than 80 days so that it was possible to obtain, by mechanical compression, larvae that could be maintained alive in liquid medium for 48 hours or more. The animals were sacrificed 14-46 days after infection and tangled larva in inflammatory nodules were found in skeletal muscle without foreign body reaction, abscess formation or calcification. The development of the nodules did not seem to affect the hosts. The larvae obtained were similar to those described by SPRENT as the third stage of these helminths. When white mice were inoculated with similar material it was not possible to recuperate larva from their tissues nor were nodules found. Based on these results it is postulated that the helminth does not present a pulmonary cycle and that its development requires an intermediary host. PMID:2135484

  6. Morphological and morphometric characterization of agoutis' peripheral blood cells (Dasyprocta prymnolopha, Wagler, 1831) raised in captivity.

    PubMed

    Conde Júnior, Airton Mendes; De Moura Fortes, Eunice Anita; De Menezes, Danilo José Ayres; De Oliveira Lopes, Luana; De Carvalho, Maria Acelina Martins

    2012-03-01

    Thirty adult agoutis (Dasyprocta primnolopha) from the Nucleus of Study and Preservation of Wild Animals at the Federal University of Piauí were used. Blood scrubs of these animals were colored by the Leishman method and analyzed in light microscopy. The cells had been measured using programs that analyze images (Leica QWin - Image Processing and Analysis Software). Mature erythrocytes, basophil reticulocytes, lymphocytes, eosinophils, neutrophils, monocytes, and thrombocytes were identified. Agoutis' erythrocytes presented elliptical form, without nucleus with an average diameter of 5.64 micromeres ± 0.38. The lymphocytes are spherical cells with scarce cytoplasm, dense and with a very centralized rounded nucleus measuring an average diameter of 13.20 micromeres ± 0.35. The monocytes are slightly basophilic, with a spherical nucleus, central constriction, and an average diameter of 20.59 micromeres ± 0.32. The neutrophils are spherical, with a polymorphic lobulated nucleus, with an average diameter of 11.2 micromeres ± 0.20. The eosinophils are spherical with lobulated nucleus and with an average diameter of 14.25 micromeres ± 0.36. Only five basophils were observed, with abundance of cytoplasmic granules with 9.8 micrometers of diameter ± 0.30. Thrombocytopenic pleomorphism was frequent. There were similarities in the cellular constituents in peripheral blood of agoutis and of other rodents and humans. The cellular types from the peripheral blood, the morphology, and morphometry of the blood's cells did not vary according to sex. PMID:21898666

  7. Structural and ultrastructural features of the agouti tongue (Dasyprocta aguti Linnaeus, 1766)

    PubMed Central

    Ciena, Adriano Polican; Bolina, Cristina de Sousa; de Almeida, Sonia Regina Yokomizo; Rici, Rose Eli Grassi; de Oliveira, Moacir Franco; da da Silva, Marcelo Cavenaghi Pereira; Miglino, Maria Angélica; Watanabe, Ii-sei

    2013-01-01

    The agouti (Dasyprocta aguti Linnaeus, 1766) is a wild rodent belonging to the family Dasyproctidae that is found throughout Brazil and feeds on fruits and seeds. The aim of the present study was to describe the following features of the tongue of agouti: its morphological structures, the three-dimensional characteristics of the lingual papillae surface, the connective tissue cores (CTCs) and the epithelial cell ultrastructure. Four types of papillae were observed on the dorsal surface of the tongue with a triangular shape: filiform, fungiform, foliate and vallate. Filiform papillae were distributed throughout the tongue surface, and removal of the epithelial surface revealed conical CTCs and multifilaments. Fungiform papillae were observed in the rostral and middle regions, whereas foliate papillae developed in pairs on the lateral margin of the caudal region. Removal of the epithelium in these regions revealed CTCs with parallel laminar conformation. Vallate papillae were arranged in a V-shape in the caudal region, and their CTCs ranged in shape from elongate to ovoid. The ultrastructural components of the dorsal epithelium were the basal, spinous, granular and keratinised layers. A broad area with cytoplasmic projections was identified in the interface region between the lamina propria and the basal layer. Flattened cells with intermediate filaments were observed in the transitional region between spinous and granular layers. The keratinised layer was composed of superimposed epithelial cells where desmosomes and cell-surface microridges were observed. These structural features, including the three-dimensional aspects of the lingual papillae, the CTCs and the epithelial ultrastructure, indicate that when compared with other animals, particularly other rodent species, the morphological features of the tongue of agouti are relatively well developed, especially regarding foliate and vallate papillae. PMID:23701183

  8. CARDIOTHORACIC RATIO AND VERTEBRAL HEART SCALE IN CLINICALLY NORMAL BLACK-RUMPED AGOUTIS (DASYPROCTA PRYMNOLOPHA, WAGLER 1831).

    PubMed

    de Moura, Charlys Rhands Coelho; das Neves Diniz, Anaemilia; da Silva Moura, Laecio; das Chagas Araújo Sousa, Francisco; Baltazar, Pollyana Irene; Freire, Larisse Danielle; Guerra, Porfírio Candanedo; de Sousa, João Macedo; Giglio, Robson Fortes; Pessoa, Gerson Tavares; de Sá, Renan Paraguassu; Alves, Flávio Ribeiro

    2015-06-01

    Wild rodents, such as the lowland paca (Cuniculus paca), capybara (Hydrochoerus hydrochaeris), rock cavy (Kerodon rupestris), guinea pig (Cavia aperea), and black-rumped agouti (Dasyprocta prymnolopha) are intensely hunted throughout Amazonia and at the semiarid regions of northeastern Brazil. To contribute to the preservation of these species, more information about their anatomy, physiology and pathophysiology is needed. The aim of this study was to standardize the vertebral heart scale (VHS) and cardiothoracic ratio (CTR) in clinically normal black-rumped agouti, as well as to compare the results of these two methods, which are commonly used to evaluate the cardiac silhouette in domestic animals. Twelve healthy black-rumped agoutis, divided into two groups (six males and six females), obtained from the Nucleus for Wild Animal Studies and Conservation at the Federal University of Piauí, were radiographed in right and left lateral and dorsoventral projections. The values of the VHS were 8.00±0.31v (the number of thoracic vertebral length spanned by each dimension, starting at T4) for males and 8.11±0.41v for females, and there was no statistical difference between the decubitus (right and left) or between males and females (P>0.05). The CTR mean values obtained were 0.51±0.03 for males, and 0.52±0.02 for females, and there was no statistical difference between the genders (P>0.05). However, there was positive correlation between VHS and CTR (r=0.77 right decubitus and r=0.82 left decubitus). The thoracic and heart diameter had mean values of 6.72±0.61 and 3.48±0.30 cm (males), and for the females, it was 6.61±0.51 and 3.5±0.30 cm, respectively, and there was statistical difference between the genders. The results demonstrated high correlation between the VHS and CTR producing similar results, indicating similar clinical precision for assessing the size of the cardiac silhouette in the black-rumped agoutis. PMID:26056885

  9. Agouti polypeptide compositions

    DOEpatents

    Woychik, Richard P.; Bultman, Scott J.; Michaud, Edward J.

    2001-10-30

    Disclosed are methods and compositions comprising novel agouti polypeptides and the polynucleotides which encode them. Also disclosed are DNA segments encoding these proteins derived from human and murine cell lines, and the use of these polynucleotides and polypeptides in a variety of diagnostic and therapeutic applications. Methods, compositions, kits, and devices are also provided for identifying compounds which are inhibitors of agouti activity, and for altering fatty acid synthetase activity and intracellular calcium levels in transformed cells.

  10. Morphological and molecular characterization of Oestromyia leporina (Pallas, 1778) (Diptera: Hypodermatinae) from wild plateau pikas(Ochotona curzoniae) in Qinghai province, China.

    PubMed

    Fu, Yong; Li, Wei; Duo, Hong; Guo, Zhihong; Dang, Zhisheng; Shen, Xiuying; Peng, Mao; Zhang, Yanming

    2016-02-01

    The objective of this article was to investigate the morphological and molecular characterization of Oestromyia leporina (Pallas, 1778) from wild plateau pikas (Ochotona curzoniae) in Qinghai province, China. The third-stage larvae of O. leporina were examined by scanning electron microscopy revealing morphology characteristics of the spines on the cephalic, the thoracic segments, the abdominal segments and the spiracular plates. The coding regions of 25 cytochrome oxidase I (COI) genes of O. leporina were investigated. Eighty-one variable sites and 21 haplotypes were identified and the nucleotide and haplotype diversities were 0.04456 and 0.9767, respectively, indicating a rich genetic diversity in O. leporina. Phylogenetic analysis utilizing sequences of COI revealed two distinct lineages. These findings revealed ultrastructure and molecular characterization among the O. leporina from plateau pikas in Qinghai province, China and had implications for studying morphological identification, molecular epidemiology and population genetics of O. leporina. PMID:26708934

  11. Agouti polynucleotide compositions and methods of use

    DOEpatents

    Woychik, Richard P.; Bultman, Scott J.; Michaud, Edward J.

    2003-02-04

    Disclosed are methods and compositions comprising novel agouti polypeptides and the polynucleotides which encode them. Also disclosed are DNA segments encoding these proteins derived from human and murine cell lines, and the use of these polynucleotides and polypeptides in a variety of diagnostic and therapeutic applications. Methods, compositions, kits, and devices are also provided for identifying compounds which are inhibitors of agouti activity, and for altering fatty acid synthetase activity and intracellular calcium levels in transformed cells.

  12. Genetic organization of the agouti region of the mouse

    SciTech Connect

    Siracusa, L.D.; Russell, L.B.; Eicher, E.M.; Corrow, D.J.; Copeland, N.G.; Jenkins, N.A.

    1987-09-01

    The agouti locus on mouse chromosome 2 acts via the hair follicle to control the melanic type and distribution of hair pigments. The diverse phenotypes associated with various agouti mutations have led to speculation about the organization of the agouti locus. Earlier studies indicated that two presumed agouti alleles, lethal yellow (A/sup y/) and lethal light-bellied nonagouti (a/sup x/), are pseudoallelic. The authors present genetic data showing probable recombination between A/sup y/ and three agouti mutations (a/sup t/, a, and a/sup x/), which suggest that A/sup y/ is a pseudoallele of the agouti locus. The close linkage of an endogenous ecotropic murine leukemia provirus, Emv-15, to A/sup y/ provides a molecular access to genes at or near the agouti locus. However, previous studies suggested that the Emv-15 locus can recombine with some agouti alleles and therefore they analyzed mice from recombinant inbred strains and backcrosses to measure the genetic distance between various agouti alleles and the Emv-15 locus. The data indicate that the Emv-15 locus is less the 0.3 cM from the agouti locus. These experiments provide a conceptual framework for initiating chromosome walking experiments designed to retrieve sequences from the agouti locus and give new insight into the genetic organization of the agouti region.

  13. Splenic melanosis in agouti and black mice.

    PubMed

    Michalczyk-Wetula, Dominika; Wieczorek, Justyna; Płonka, Przemysław M

    2015-01-01

    An interesting example of extradermal deposition of melanin in vertebrates, notably in mammals, is splenic melanosis. In particular, if the phenomenon of splenic melanosis is correlated with hair or skin pigmentation, it must reflect the amount and perhaps the quality of pigment produced in hair follicle melanocytes. The present paper is our first study on splenic pigmentation in mice of phenotype agouti. We used untreated mixed background mice C57BL/6;129/SvJ (black - a/a, agouti - A/a, A/A), and as a control - black C57BL/6 and agouti fur from 129/SvJ mice, Mongolian gerbils (Meriones unguiculatus) and golden hamsters (Mesocricetus auratus). After euthanasia skin and spleen was evaluated macroscopically, photographed and collected for further analysis using Fontana-Masson and hematoxylin-eosin staining and electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) at X-band. Spleens of the agouti mice revealed splenic melanosis but were slightly weaker pigmented than their black counterparts, while the presence of pheomelanin was difficult to determine. The fur of both phenotypes was of similar melanin content, with the same tendency as in the spleens. The contribution of pheomelanin in the agouti fur was on the border of detectability by EPR. Histological and EPR analysis confirmed the presence of melanin in the melanotic spleens. The shape of the EPR signal showed a dominance of eumelanin in fur and in melanized spleens in both phenotypes of mice. Therefore, splenic melanosis does reflect the hair follicle pigmentation not only in black, but also in agouti mice. PMID:26291042

  14. A Transgenic Mouse Assay for Agouti Protein Activity

    PubMed Central

    Perry, W. L.; Hustad, C. M.; Swing, D. A.; Jenkins, N. A.; Copeland, N. G.

    1995-01-01

    The mouse agouti gene encodes an 131 amino acid paracrine signaling molecule that instructs hair follicle melanocytes to switch from making black to yellow pigment. Expression of agouti during the middle part of the hair growth cycle in wild-type mice produces a yellow band on an otherwise black hair. The ubiquitous unregulated expression of agouti in mice carrying dominant yellow alleles is associated with pleiotropic effects including increased yellow pigment in the coat, obesity, diabetes and increased tumor susceptibility. Agouti shows no significant homology to known genes, and the molecular analysis of agouti alleles has shed little new light on the important functional elements of the agouti protein. In this paper, we show that agouti expression driven by the human β-ACTIN promoter produces obese yellow transgenic mice and that this can be used as an assay for agouti activity. We used this assay to evaluate a point mutation associated with the a(16H) allele within the region encoding agouti's putative signal sequence and our results suggest that this mutation is sufficient to cause the a(16H) phenotype. Thus, in vitro mutagenesis followed by the generation of transgenic mice should allow us to identify important functional elements of the agouti protein. PMID:7635291

  15. Structures of the agouti signaling protein.

    PubMed

    McNulty, Joseph C; Jackson, Pilgrim J; Thompson, Darren A; Chai, Biaoxin; Gantz, Ira; Barsh, Gregory S; Dawson, Philip E; Millhauser, Glenn L

    2005-03-01

    Expression of the agouti signaling protein (ASIP) during hair growth produces the red/yellow pigment pheomelanin. ASIP, and its neuropeptide homolog the agouti-related protein (AgRP) involved in energy balance, are novel, paracrine signaling molecules that act as inverse agonists at distinct subsets of melanocortin receptors. Ubiquitous ASIP expression in mice gives rise to a pleiotropic phenotype characterized by a uniform yellow coat color, obesity, overgrowth, and metabolic derangements similar to type II diabetes in humans. Here we report the synthesis and NMR structure of ASIP's active, cysteine-rich, C-terminal domain. ASIP adopts the inhibitor cystine knot fold and, along with AgRP, are the only known mammalian proteins in this structure class. Moreover, ASIP populates two distinct conformers resulting from a cis peptide bond at Pro102-Pro103 and a coexistence of cis/trans isomers of Ala104-Pro105. Pharmacologic studies of Pro-->Ala mutants demonstrate that the minor conformation with two cis peptide bonds is responsible for activity at all MCRs. The loop containing the heterogeneous Ala-Pro peptide bond is conserved in mammals, and suggests that ASIP is either trapped by evolution in this unusual configuration or possesses function outside of strict MCR antagonism. PMID:15701517

  16. Analysis of the function of the agouti gene in obesity and diabetes

    SciTech Connect

    Mynatt, R.L.; Miltenberger, R.J.; Klebig, M.L.

    1996-09-01

    This chapter discusses the agouti gene and dominant mutations in that gene that lead to agouti-induced obesity, and recent work with transgenic mice to elucidate the role of agouti in obesity. Agouti was cloned in 1992 by the lab of Rick Woychik at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, making it the first of many recently cloned mouse obesity genes. Sequence analysis predicted that mouse agouti is a secreted protein of 131 amino acids. The mature protein has a basic central region (lys57-arg85), a proline-rich domain (pro86-pro91) and a C-terminal region (cys 92-cys 13 1) containing 10 cysteine residues which form 5 disulfide bonds. The human homologue of agouti has also been cloned by the Woychik lab and maps to human chromosome 20q 11.2. Human agouti is 132 amino acids long and is 85% similar to the mouse agouti protein and is normally expressed in adipose tissue. The researchers have been able to recapitulate obesity, hyperinsulinemia, and hyperglycemia with the ubiquitous expression of agouti. Agouti expression in either liver and adipose tissue alone does not cause obesity, and there`s a dose-dependent effect of agouti on body weight, food efficiency, body temperature, and insulin and glucose levels.

  17. Melanism in Peromyscus Is Caused by Independent Mutations in Agouti

    PubMed Central

    Kingsley, Evan P.; Manceau, Marie; Wiley, Christopher D.; Hoekstra, Hopi E.

    2009-01-01

    Identifying the molecular basis of phenotypes that have evolved independently can provide insight into the ways genetic and developmental constraints influence the maintenance of phenotypic diversity. Melanic (darkly pigmented) phenotypes in mammals provide a potent system in which to study the genetic basis of naturally occurring mutant phenotypes because melanism occurs in many mammals, and the mammalian pigmentation pathway is well understood. Spontaneous alleles of a few key pigmentation loci are known to cause melanism in domestic or laboratory populations of mammals, but in natural populations, mutations at one gene, the melanocortin-1 receptor (Mc1r), have been implicated in the vast majority of cases, possibly due to its minimal pleiotropic effects. To investigate whether mutations in this or other genes cause melanism in the wild, we investigated the genetic basis of melanism in the rodent genus Peromyscus, in which melanic mice have been reported in several populations. We focused on two genes known to cause melanism in other taxa, Mc1r and its antagonist, the agouti signaling protein (Agouti). While variation in the Mc1r coding region does not correlate with melanism in any population, in a New Hampshire population, we find that a 125-kb deletion, which includes the upstream regulatory region and exons 1 and 2 of Agouti, results in a loss of Agouti expression and is perfectly associated with melanic color. In a second population from Alaska, we find that a premature stop codon in exon 3 of Agouti is associated with a similar melanic phenotype. These results show that melanism has evolved independently in these populations through mutations in the same gene, and suggest that melanism produced by mutations in genes other than Mc1r may be more common than previously thought. PMID:19649329

  18. Isolation and characterization of Agouti: a diabetes/obesity related gene

    DOEpatents

    Woychik, Richard P.

    1998-01-01

    The present invention relates to the cloning and expression of the Agouti gene and analogous genes in transformed, transfected and transgenic mice. The present invention provides an animal model for the study of diabetes, obesity and tumors for the testing of potential therapeutic agents. The present invention provides oligonucleotide probes for the detection of the Agouti gene and mutations in the gene. The present invention also relates to the isolation and recombinant production of the Agouti gene product, production of antibodies to the Agouti gene product and their use as diagnostic and therapeutic agents.

  19. Isolation and characterization of Agouti: a diabetes/obesity related gene

    DOEpatents

    Woychik, Richard P.

    2000-06-27

    The present invention relates to the cloning and expression of the Agouti gene and analogous genes in transformed, transfected and transgenic mice. The present invention provides an animal model for the study of diabetes, obesity and tumors for the testing of potential therapeutic agents. The present invention provides oligonucleotide probes for the detection of the Agouti gene and mutations in the gene. The present invention also relates to the isolation and recombinant production of the Agouti gene product, production of antibodies to the Agouti gene product and their use as diagnostic and therapeutic agents.

  20. Agouti signaling protein stimulates cell division in "viable yellow" (A vy/a) mouse liver

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Enhanced linear growth, hyperplasia, and tumorigenesis are well-known characteristics of "viable yellow" agouti Avy/- mice (1); however, the functional basis for this aspect of the phenotype is unknown. In the present study, we ascertained whether agouti signaling protein (ASIP) levels in Avy/a or a...

  1. Overexpression of agouti protein and stress responsiveness in mice.

    PubMed

    Harris, R B; Zhou, J; Shi, M; Redmann, S; Mynatt, R L; Ryan, D H

    2001-07-01

    Ectopic overexpression of agouti protein, an endogenous antagonist of melanocortin receptors' linked to the beta-actin promoter (BAPa) in mice, produces a phenotype of yellow coat color, Type II diabetes, obesity and increased somatic growth. Spontaneous overexpression of agouti increases stress-induced weight loss. In these experiments, other aspects of stress responsiveness were tested in 12-week-old male wild-type mice and BAPa mice. Two hours of restraint on three consecutive days produced greater increases in corticosterone and post-stress weight loss in BAPa than wild-type mice. In Experiment 2, anxiety-type behavior was measured immediately after 12 min of restraint. This mild stress did not produce many changes indicative of anxiety, but BAPa mice spent more time in the dark side of a light-dark box and less time in the open arms of an elevated plus maze than restrained wild-type mice. In a defensive withdrawal test, grooming was increased by restraint in all mice, but the duration of each event was substantially shorter in BAPa mice, possibly due to direct antagonism of the MC4-R by agouti protein. Thus, BAPa mice showed exaggerated endocrine and energetic responses to restraint stress with small differences in anxiety-type behavior compared with wild-type mice. These results are consistent with observations in other transgenic mice in which the melanocortin system is disrupted, but contrast with reports that acute blockade of central melanocortin receptors inhibits stress-induced hypophagia. Thus, the increased stress responsiveness in BAPa mice may be a developmental compensation for chronic inhibition of melanocortin receptors. PMID:11495665

  2. Molecular analysis of the mouse agouti gene and the role of dominant agouti-locus mutations in obesity and insulin resistance

    SciTech Connect

    Klebig, M.L.; Woychik, R.P.; Wilkinson, J.E.

    1994-09-01

    The lethal yellow (A{sup y/-}) and viable yellow (A{sup vy/-}) mouse agouti mutants have a predominantly yellow pelage and display a complex syndrome that includes obesity, hyperinsulinemia, and insulin resistance, hallmark features of obesity-associated noninsulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM) in humans. A new dominant agouti allele, A{sup iapy}, has recently been identified; like the A{sup vy} allele, it is homozygous viable and confers obesity and yellow fur in heterozygotes. The agouti gene was cloned and characterized at the molecular level. The gene is expressed in the skin during hair growth and is predicted to encode a 131 amino acid protein, that is likely to be a secreted factor. In both Ay/- and A{sup iapy}/- mice, the obesity and other dominant pleiotropic effects are associated with an ectopic expression of agouti in many tissues where the gene product is normally not produced. In Ay, a 170-kb deletion has occurred that causes an upstream promoter to drive the ectopic expression of the wild-type agouti coding exons. In A{sup iapy}, the coding region of the gene is expressed from a cryptic promoter within the LTR of an intracisternal A-particle (IAP), which has integrated within the region just upstream of the first agouti coding exon. Transgenic mice ubiquitously expressing the cloned agouti gene under the influence of the beta-actin and phosphoglycerate kinase promoters display obesity, hyperinsulinemia, and yellow coat color. This demonstrates unequivocally that ectopic expression of agouti is responsible for the yellow obese syndrome.

  3. Experimental heteroxenous cycle of Lagochilascaris minor Leiper, 1909 (Nematoda: Ascarididae) in white mice and in cats.

    PubMed

    Volcan, G S; Medrano, C E; Payares, G

    1992-01-01

    Reports of natural infections of sylvatic carnivores by adult worms of species similar to Lagochilascaris minor in the Neotropical region led to attempts to establish experimental cycles in laboratory mice and in cats. Also, larval development was seen in the skeletal muscle of an agouti (Dasyprocta leporina) infected per os with incubated eggs of the parasite obtained from a human case. In cats, adult worms develop and fertile eggs are expelled in the feces; in mice, larval stages of the parasite develop, and are encapsulate in the skeletal muscle, and in the adipose and subcutaneous connective tissue. From our observations, we conclude that the larva infective for the mouse is the early 3rd stage, while for the final host the infective form is the later 3rd stage. A single moult was seen in the mouse, giving rise to a small population of 4th stage larvae, long after the initial infection. PMID:1343667

  4. Molecular structure and chromosomal mapping of the human homolog of the agouti gene

    SciTech Connect

    Kwon, H.Y.; Woychik, R.P.; Bultman, S.J. |; Loeffler, C.; Hansmann, I.; Chen, W.J.; Furdon, P.J.; Wilkison, W.; Powell, J.G.; Usala, A.L.

    1994-10-11

    The agouti (a) locus in mouse chromosome 2 normally regulates coat color pigmentation. The mouse agouti gene was recently cloned and shown to encode a distinctive 131-amino acid protein with a consensus signal peptide. Here the authors describe the cloning of the human homolog of the mouse agouti gene using an interspecies DNA-hybridization approach. Sequence analysis revealed that the coding region of the human agouti gene is 85% identical to the mouse gene and has the potential to encode a protein of 132 amino acids with a consensus signal peptide. Chromosomal assignment using somatic-cell-hybrid mapping panels and fluorescence in situ hybridization demonstrated that the human agouti gene maps to chromosome band 20q11.2. This result revealed that the human agouti gene is closely linked to several traits, including a locus called MODY (for maturity onset diabetes of the young) and another region that is associated with the development of myeloid leukemia. Initial expression studies with RNA from several adult human tissues showed that the human agouti gene is expressed in adipose tissue and testis.

  5. Coupled Site-Directed Mutagenesis/Transgenesis Identifies Important Functional Domains of the Mouse Agouti Protein

    PubMed Central

    Perry, W. L.; Nakamura, T.; Swing, D. A.; Secrest, L.; Eagleson, B.; Hustad, C. M.; Copeland, N. G.; Jenkins, N. A.

    1996-01-01

    The agouti locus encodes a novel paracrine signaling molecule containing a signal sequence, an N-linked glycosylation site, a central lysine-rich basic domain, and a C-terminal tail containing 10 cysteine (Cys) residues capable of forming five disulfide bonds. When overexpressed, agouti causes a number of pleiotropic effects including yellow coat and adult-onset obesity. Numerous studies suggest that agouti causes yellow coat color by antagonizing the binding of α-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (α-MSH) to the α-MSH-(melanocortin-1) receptor. With the goal of identifying functional domains of agouti important for its diverse biological activities, we have generated 14 agouti mutations by in vitro site-directed mutagenesis and analyzed these mutations in transgenic mice for their effects on coat color and obesity. These studies demonstrate that the signal sequence, the N-linked glycosylation site, and the C-terminal Cys residues are important for full biological activity, while at least a portion of the lysine-rich basic domain is dispensable for normal function. They also show that the same functional domains of agouti important in coat color determination are important for inducing obesity, consistent with the hypothesis that agouti induces obesity by antagonizing melanocortin binding to other melanocortin receptors. PMID:8878691

  6. Diet-induced hypermethylation at agouti viable yellow is not inherited transgenerationally through the female

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The effects of nonmutagenic environmental exposures can sometimes be transmitted for several generations, suggesting transgenerational inheritance of induced epigenetic variation. Methyl donor supplementation of female mice during pregnancy induces CpG hypermethylation at the agouti viable yellow (A...

  7. Molecular and phenotypic analysis of 25 recessive, homozygous-viable alleles at the mouse agouti locus.

    PubMed Central

    Miltenberger, Rosalynn J; Wakamatsu, Kazumasa; Ito, Shosuke; Woychik, Richard P; Russell, Liane B; Michaud, Edward J

    2002-01-01

    Agouti is a paracrine-acting, transient antagonist of melanocortin 1 receptors that specifies the subapical band of yellow on otherwise black hairs of the wild-type coat. To better understand both agouti structure/function and the germline damage caused by chemicals and radiation, an allelic series of 25 recessive, homozygous-viable agouti mutations generated in specific-locus tests were characterized. Visual inspection of fur, augmented by quantifiable chemical analysis of hair melanins, suggested four phenotypic categories (mild, moderate, umbrous-like, severe) for the 18 hypomorphs and a single category for the 7 amorphs (null). Molecular analysis indicated protein-coding alterations in 8 hypomorphs and 6 amorphs, with mild-moderate phenotypes correlating with signal peptide or basic domain mutations, and more devastating phenotypes resulting from C-terminal lesions. Ten hypomorphs and one null demonstrated wild-type coding potential, suggesting that they contain mutations elsewhere in the > or = 125-kb agouti locus that either reduce the level or alter the temporal/spatial distribution of agouti transcripts. Beyond the notable contributions to the field of mouse germ cell mutagenesis, analysis of this allelic series illustrates that complete abrogation of agouti function in vivo occurs most often through protein-coding lesions, whereas partial loss of function occurs slightly more frequently at the level of gene expression control. PMID:11861569

  8. Agouti regulation of intracellular calcium: Role in the insulin resistance of viable yellow mice

    SciTech Connect

    Zemel, M.B.; Kim, J.H.; Woychik, R.P.; Michaud, E.J.; Hadwell, S.H.; Patel, I.R.; Wilkison, W.O.

    1995-05-23

    Several dominant mutations at the agouti locus in the mouse cause a syndrome of marked obesity, hyperinsulinemia, and insulin resistance. Although it is known that the agouti gene is expressed in an ectopic manner in these mutants, the precise mechanism by which the agouti gene product mediates these effects is unclear. Since intracellular Ca{sup 2+} is believed to play a role in mediating insulin action and dysregulation of Ca{sup 2+} flux is observed in diabetic animals and humans, we examined the status of intracellular Ca{sup 2+} in mice carrying the dominant agouti allele, viable yellow (A{sup vy}). We show here that in mice carrying this mutation, the intracellular free calcium concentration ([Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i}) is elevated in skeletal muscle, and the degree of elevation is closely correlated with the degree to which the mutant traits are expressed in individual animals. Moreover, we demonstrate that the agouti gene product is capable of inducing increased [Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i} in cultured and freshly isolated skeletal muscle myocytes from wild-type mice. Based on these findings, we present a model in which we propose that the agouti polypeptide promotes insulin resistance in mutant animals through its ability to increase [Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i}. 36 refs., 3 figs., 2 tabs.

  9. Molecular Genetic Characterization of Six Recessive Viable Alleles of the Mouse Agouti Locus

    PubMed Central

    Hustad, C. M.; Perry, W. L.; Siracusa, L. D.; Rasberry, C.; Cobb, L.; Cattanach, B. M.; Kovatch, R.; Copeland, N. G.; Jenkins, N. A.

    1995-01-01

    The agouti locus on mouse chromosome 2 encodes a secreted cysteine-rich protein of 131 amino acids that acts as a molecular switch to instruct the melanocyte to make either yellow pigment (phaeomelanin) or black pigment (eumelanin). Mutations that up-regulate agouti expression are dominant to those causing decreased expression and result in yellow coat color. Other associated effects are obesity, diabetes, and increased susceptibility to tumors. To try to define important functional domains of the agouti protein, we have analyzed the molecular defects present in a series of recessive viable agouti mutations. In total, six alleles (a(mJ), a(u), a(da), a(16H), a(18H), a(e)) were examined at both the RNA and DNA level. Two of the alleles, a(16H) and a(e), result from mutations in the agouti coding region. Four alleles (a(mJ), a(u), a(18H), and a(da)) appear to represent regulatory mutations that down-regulate agouti expression. Interestingly, one of these mutations, a(18H), also appears to cause an immunological defect in the homozygous condition. This immunological defect is somewhat analogous to that observed in motheaten (me) mutant mice. Short and long-range restriction enzyme analyses of homozygous a(18H) DNA are consistent with the hypothesis that a(18H) results from a paracentric inversion where one end of the inversion maps in the 5' regulatory region of agouti and the other end in or near a gene that is required for normal immunological function. Cloning the breakpoints of this putative inversion should allow us to identify the gene that confers this interesting immunological disorder. PMID:7635290

  10. Identification of Distant Agouti-Like Sequences and Re-Evaluation of the Evolutionary History of the Agouti-Related Peptide (AgRP)

    PubMed Central

    Västermark, Åke; Krishnan, Arunkumar; Houle, Michael E.; Fredriksson, Robert; Cerdá-Reverter, José Miguel; Schiöth, Helgi B.

    2012-01-01

    The Agouti-like peptides including AgRP, ASIP and the teleost-specific A2 (ASIP2 and AgRP2) peptides have potent and diverse functional roles in feeding, pigmentation and background adaptation mechanisms. There are contradictory theories about the evolution of the Agouti-like peptide family as well the nomenclature. Here we performed comprehensive mining and annotation of vertebrate Agouti-like sequences. We identified A2 sequences from salmon, trout, seabass, cod, cichlid, tilapia, gilt-headed sea bream, Antarctic toothfish, rainbow smelt, common carp, channel catfish and interestingly also in lobe-finned fish. Moreover, we surprisingly found eight novel homologues from the kingdom of arthropods and three from fungi, some sharing the characteristic C-x(6)-C-C motif which are present in the Agouti-like sequences, as well as approximate sequence length (130 amino acids), positioning of the motif sequence and sharing of exon-intron structures that are similar to the other Agouti-like peptides providing further support for the common origin of these sequences. Phylogenetic analysis shows that the AgRP sequences cluster basally in the tree, suggesting that these sequences split from a cluster containing both the ASIP and the A2 sequences. We also used a novel approach to determine the statistical evidence for synteny, a sinusoidal Hough transform pattern recognition technique. Our analysis shows that the teleost AgRP2 resides in a chromosomal region that has synteny with Hsa 8, but we found no convincing synteny between the regions that A2, AgRP and ASIP reside in, which would support that the Agouti-like peptides were formed by whole genome tetraplodization events. Here we suggest that the Agouti-like peptide genes were formed through classical subsequent gene duplications where the AgRP is the most distantly related to the three other members of that group, first splitting from a common ancestor to ASIP and A2, and then later the A2 split from ASIP followed by a

  11. Agouti C57BL/6N embryonic stem cells for mouse genetic resources

    PubMed Central

    Pettitt, Stephen J.; Liang, Qi; Rairdan, Xin Y.; Moran, Jennifer L.; Prosser, Haydn M.; Beier, David R.; Lloyd, Kent; Bradley, Allan; Skarnes, William C.

    2010-01-01

    We report the characterization of a highly germline competent C57BL/6N mouse embryonic stem cell line, JM8. To simplify breeding schemes, the dominant Agouti coat color gene was restored in JM8 cells by targeted repair of the C57BL/6 nonagouti mutation. These cells provide a robust foundation for large-scale mouse knockout programs that aim to provide a public resource of targeted mutations in the C57BL/6 genetic background. PMID:19525957

  12. The effects of calcium channel blockade on agouti-induced obesity

    SciTech Connect

    Kim, Jung Han; Moustaid, N.; Zemel, M.B.

    1996-12-01

    We have previously observed that obese viable yellow (A{sup vy}/a) mice exhibit increased intracellular Ca{sup 2+} ([Ca{sup 2+}]i) and fatty acid synthase (FAS) gene expression; further, recombinant agouti protein increases in cultured adipocytes and these effects are inhibited by Ca{sup 2+} channel blockade. Accordingly, we determined the effect of Ca{sup 2+} channel blockade (nifedipine for 4 wk) on FAS and obesity in transgenic mice expressing the agouti gene in a ubiquitous manner. The transgenic mice initially were significantly heavier (30.5 {+-} 0.6 vs. 27.3 {+-} 0.3 g; P<0.001) and exhibited a 0.81{degrees}C lower initial core temperature (P<0.0005), an approximately twofold increase in fat pad weights (P=0.002), a sevenfold increase in adipose FAS activity (P=0.009), and a twofold increase in plasma insulin level (P<0.05) compared to control mice. Nifedipine treatment resulted in an 18% decrease in fat pad weights (P<0.007) and a 74% decrease in adipose FAS activity (P=0.03), normalized circulating insulin levels and insulin sensitivity (P,0.05), and transiently elevated core temperature in the transgenic mice, but was without effect in the control mice. These data suggest that agouti regulates FAS, fat storage, and possibly thermogenesis, at least partially, via a [Ca{sup 2+}]{sub i}-dependent mechanism, and that Ca{sup 2+} channel blockade may partially attenuate agouti-induced obesity. 42 refs., 4 figs., 1 tab.

  13. Characterization of the dog agouti gene and a nonagouti mutation in german shepherd dogs

    SciTech Connect

    Kerns, Julie A.; Newton, J.; Berryere, Tom G.; Rubin, Edward M.; Cheng, Jan-Fang; Schmutz, Sheila M.; Barsh, Gregory S.

    2004-07-08

    The interaction between two genes, Agouti and Melanocortin-1 receptor (Mc1r), produces diverse pigment patterns in mammals by regulating the type, amount, and distribution pattern of the two pigment types found in mammalian hair: eumelanin (brown/black) and pheomelanin (yellow/red). In domestic dogs (Canis familiaris), there is a tremendous variation in coat color patterns between and within breeds; however, previous studies suggest that the molecular genetics of pigment-type switching in dogs may differ from that of other mammals. Here we report the identification and characterization of the Agouti gene from domestic dogs, predicted to encode a 131-amino-acid secreted protein 98 percent identical to the fox homolog, and which maps to chromosome CFA24 in a region of conserved linkage. Comparative analysis of the Doberman Pinscher Agouti cDNA, the fox cDNA, and 180 kb of Doberman Pinscher genomic DNA suggests that, as with laboratory mice, different pigment-type-switching patterns in the canine family are controlled by alternative usage of different promoters and untranslated first exons. A small survey of Labrador Retrievers, Greyhounds, Australian Shepherds, and German Shepherd Dogs did not uncover any polymorphisms, but we identified a single nucleotide variant in black German Shepherd Dogs predicted to cause an Arg-to-Cys substitution at codon 96, which is likely to account for recessive inheritance of a uniform black coat.

  14. Characterization of the dog Agouti gene and a nonagoutimutation in German Shepherd Dogs.

    PubMed

    Kerns, Julie A; Newton, J; Berryere, Tom G; Rubin, Edward M; Cheng, Jan-Fang; Schmutz, Sheila M; Barsh, Gregory S

    2004-10-01

    The interaction between two genes, Agouti and Melanocortin-1 receptor ( Mc1r), produces diverse pigment patterns in mammals by regulating the type, amount, and distribution pattern of the two pigment types found in mammalian hair: eumelanin (brown/black) and pheomelanin (yellow/red). In domestic dogs ( Canis familiaris), there is a tremendous variation in coat color patterns between and within breeds; however, previous studies suggest that the molecular genetics of pigment-type switching in dogs may differ from that of other mammals. Here we report the identification and characterization of the Agouti gene from domestic dogs, predicted to encode a 131-amino-acid secreted protein 98% identical to the fox homolog, and which maps to chromosome CFA24 in a region of conserved linkage. Comparative analysis of the Doberman Pinscher Agouti cDNA, the fox cDNA, and 180 kb of Doberman Pinscher genomic DNA suggests that, as with laboratory mice, different pigment-type-switching patterns in the canine family are controlled by alternative usage of different promoters and untranslated first exons. A small survey of Labrador Retrievers, Greyhounds, Australian Shepherds, and German Shepherd Dogs did not uncover any polymorphisms, but we identified a single nucleotide variant in black German Shepherd Dogs predicted to cause an Arg-to-Cys substitution at codon 96, which is likely to account for recessive inheritance of a uniform black coat. PMID:15520882

  15. The early origin of melanocortin receptors, agouti-related peptide, agouti signalling peptide, and melanocortin receptor-accessory proteins, with emphasis on pufferfishes, elephant shark, lampreys, and amphioxus.

    PubMed

    Västermark, Ake; Schiöth, Helgi B

    2011-06-11

    There are conflicting theories about the evolution of melanocortin MC receptors while only few studies have addressed the evolution of agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and agouti signalling peptide (ASIP), which are antagonists at the melanocortin receptors (MCRs), or the melanocortin MC(2) receptor accessory proteins (MRAP1 and MRAP2). Previously we have cloned melanocortin MC receptors (MC(a) and MC(b)) genes in river lamprey and here we identify orthologues to these melanocortin MC receptor sequences in the sea lamprey. We investigate the putative presence of the melanocortin MC receptor genes in lancelet (amphioxus; Branchiostoma floridae) but we find it unlikely that such gene exists, due to a sharp drop in sequence similarity beyond sequence clusters of known receptors. We show the presence of AgRP and ASIP in elephant shark, a cartilaginous fish belonging to the subclass of Elasmobranchii. However, we do not find any of these genes in lamprey or lancelet after detailed analysis of both targeted and whole proteome regular expression scans. We found MRAP2, but not MRAP1, to be present in elephant shark and sea lamprey while Fugu (T. rubripes) has both genes. This study shows that the most ancient presence of these melanocortin-related sequences is found in elephant shark and lampreys considering the current available sequence data. PMID:21208605

  16. Maternal epigenetics and methyl supplements affect agouti gene expression in A{sup vy}/a mice

    SciTech Connect

    Wolff, G.L.

    1998-08-01

    Viable yellow (A{sup vy}/a) mice are larger, obese, hyperinsulinemic, more susceptible to cancer, and, on average, shorter lived than their non-yellow siblings. They are epigenetic mosaics ranging from a yellow phenotype with maximum ectopic agouti overexpression, through a continuum of mottled agouti/yellow phenotypes with partial agouti overexpression, to a pseudoagouti phenotype with minimal ectopic expression. Pseudoagouti A{sup vy}/a mice are lean, healthy, and longer lived than their yellow siblings. Here the authors report that feeding pregnant black a/a dams methyl-supplemented diets alters epigenetic regulation of agouti expression in their offspring, as indicated by increased agouti/black mottling in the direction of the pseudoagouti phenotype. They also present confirmatory evidence that epigenetic phenotypes are maternally heritable. Thus A{sup vy} expression, already known to be modulated by imprinting, strain-specific modification, and maternal epigenetic inheritance, is also modulated by maternal diet. These observations suggest, at least in this special case, that maternal dietary supplementation may positively affect health and longevity of the offspring. Therefore, this experimental system should be useful for identifying maternal factors that modulate epigenetic mechanisms, especially DNA methylation, in developing embryos.

  17. Ectopic expression of the agouti gene in transgenic mice causes obesity, features of type II diabetes, and yellow fur

    SciTech Connect

    Klebig, M.L.; Woychik, R.P.; Wilkinson, J.E.; Geisler, J.G. |

    1995-05-23

    Mice that carry the lethal yellow (A{sup y}) or viable yellow (A{sup vy}) mutation, two dominant mutations of the agouti (a) gene in mouse chromosome 2, exhibit a phenotype that includes yellow fur, marked obesity, a form of type II diabetes associated with insulin resistance, and an increased susceptibility to tumor development. Molecular analyses of these and several other dominant {open_quotes}obese yellow{close_quotes} a-locus mutations suggested that ectopic expression of the normal agouti protein gives rise to this complex pleiotropic phenotype. We have now tested this hypothesis directly by generating transgenic mice that ectopically express an agouti cDNA clone encoding the normal agouti protein in all tissues examined. Transgenic mice of both sexes have yellow fur, become obese, and develop hyperinsulinemia. In addition, male transgenic mice develop hyperglycemia by 12-20 weeks of age. These results demonstrate conclusively that the ectopic agouti expression is responsible for most, if not all, of the phenotypic traits of the dominant, obese yellow mutants. 42 refs., 5 figs.

  18. Molecular basis of the pleiotropic phenotype of mice carrying the hypervariable yellow (A{sup hvy}) mutation at the agouti locus

    SciTech Connect

    Argeson, A.C.; Nelson, K.K.; Siracusa, L.D.

    1996-02-01

    The murine agouti locus regulates a switch in pigment synthesis between eumelanin (black/brown pigment) and phaeomelanin (yellow/red pigment) by hair bulb melanocytes. We recently described a spontaneous mutation, hypervariable yellow (A{sup hvy}) and demonstrated that A{sup hvy} is responsible for the largest range of phenotypes yet identified at the agouti locus, producing mice that are obese with yellow coats to mice that are of normal weight with black coats. Here, we show that agouti expression is altered both temporally and spatially in A{sup hvy} mutants. Agouti expression levels are positively correlated with the degree of yellow pigmentation in individual A{sup hvy} mice, consistent with results from other dominant yellow agouti mutations. Sequencing of 5{prime} RACE and genomic PCR products revealed that A{sup hvy} resulted from the integration of an intracisternal A particle (IAP) in an antisense orientation within the 5{prime} untranslated agouti exon 1C. This retrovirus-like element is responsible for deregulating agouti expression in A{sup hvy} mice; agouti expression is correlated with the methylation state of CpG residues in the IAP long terminal repeat as well as in host genomic DNA. In addition, the data suggest that the variable phenotype of A{sup hvy} offspring is influenced in part by the phenotype of their A{sup hvy} female parent. 42 refs., 7 figs., 1 tab.

  19. [Methyl-containing diet of mothers affects the AGOUTI gene expression in the offspring of rats with various behavioral types].

    PubMed

    Prasolova, L A; Os'kina, I N; Pliusnina, I Z; Trut, L N

    2009-05-01

    The effects of selection of agouti rats (with genotype AAHH) on the tame and aggressive behavior and dietary methyl given to females from the eighth day of pregnancy to the fifth day after the birth of the offspring on the intensity of the agouti coat color in the offspring have been studied. The morphometric parameters of hair determining the darkness of the agouti color (the total length of guard hairs, the lengths of their eumelanin end and pheomelanin band, the ratio between the lengths of the eumelanin and pheomelanin portions of the hair, the total length of the awn hairs, and the relative length of their widened "lanceolate" upper end) have been compared. It has been found that selection of agouti rats for aggressive behavior is accompanied by darkening of the coat color compared to tame rats due to an increase in the ratio of the length of the black eumelanin end of the guard hairs to the length of the yellow pheomelanin band. Methyl-containing additives to the diet of females affect the intensity of the agouti coat color in the offsprings with both types of behavior, but to different extents. Aggressive offspring is more sensitive to the mother's methyl-containing diet: the percentage of animals that are darker than control rats is higher among aggressive animals than among tame ones due to a greater increase in the ratio between dark and light portions of hairs. The possible mechanisms of differences in the phenotypic modifications of coat color in control and experimental agouti rats with different types of behavior are discussed. PMID:19534427

  20. An obesity-dependent lactation defect in the viable yellow agouti mouse is associated with mammary inflammation

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Maternal obesity is known to delay lactogenesis in breast-feeding women, as well as negatively impact lactation in other species. Obesity is also understood to be associated with inflammation. Work with the viable yellow agouti (Avy) mouse in our laboratory has documented a lactation defect in obese...

  1. Liver-specific expression of the agouti gene in transgenic mice promotes liver carcinogenesis in the absence of obesity and diabetes

    SciTech Connect

    Kuklin, Alexander; Mynatt, Randall; Klebig, Mitch; Kiefer, Laura; Wilkison, William O; Woychik, Richard P; Michaud III, Edward J

    2004-01-01

    Background: The agouti protein is a paracrine factor that is normally present in the skin of many species of mammals. Agouti regulates the switch between black and yellow hair pigmentation by signalling through the melanocortin 1 receptor (Mc1r) on melanocytes. Lethal yellow (Ay) and viable yellow (Avy) are dominant regulatory mutations in the mouse agouti gene that cause the wild- ype protein to be produced at abnormally high levels throughout the body. Mice harboring these mutations exhibit a pleiotropic syndrome characterized by yellow coat color, obesity, hyperglycemia, hyperinsulinemia, and increased susceptibility to hyperplasia and carcinogenesis in numerous tissues, including the liver. The goal of this research was to determine if ectopic expression of the agouti gene in the liver alone is sufficient to recapitulate any aspect of this syndrome. For this purpose, we generated lines of transgenic mice expressing high levels of agouti in the liver under the regulatory control of the albumin promoter. Expression levels of the agouti transgene in the liver were quantified by Northern blot analysis. Functional agouti protein in the liver of transgenic mice was assayed by its ability to inhibit binding of the -melanocyte stimulating hormone ( MSH) to the Mc1r. Body weight, plasma insulin and blood glucose levels were analyzed in control and transgenic mice. Control and transgenic male mice were given a single intraperitoneal injection (10 mg/kg) of the hepatocellular carcinogen, diethylnitrosamine (DEN), at 15 days of age. Mice were euthanized at 36 or 40 weeks after DEN injection and the number of tumors per liver and total liver weights were recorded. Results: The albumin-agouti transgene was expressed at high levels in the livers of mice and produced a functional agouti protein. Albumin-agouti transgenic mice had normal body weights and normal levels of blood glucose and plasma insulin, but responded to chemical initiation of the liver with an increased number

  2. Brown coat color in Icelandic cattle produced by the loci Extension and Agouti.

    PubMed

    Adalsteinsson, S; Bjarnadottir, S; Vage, D I; Jonmundsson, J V

    1995-01-01

    Inheritance of the colors black, brown, and red in Icelandic cattle was studied. The three colors are produced by two loci, Extension (E) and Agouti (A), with three alleles at the E locus: E(d) for dominant black; E+, intermediate, which allows expression of A locus alleles; and e for recessive red color. Two alleles are postulated at the A locus: A+, producing brown, and a, producing recessive black (nonagouti) when homozygous in E+/- animals. The dominant and recessive types of black are indistinguishable from each other phenotypically. The A alleles are only able to express their effect in E+/- genotypes. The E and A loci in cattle are postulated to be homologous to the E and A loci in the mouse. PMID:7560875

  3. Microscopic characterization of teeth of pacas bred in captivity (Agouti paca, Linnaeus, 1766).

    PubMed

    Oliveira, F S; Canola, J C; Oliveira, P T; Pécora, J D; Capelli, A

    2007-10-01

    The microscopic description of the teeth of pacas (Agouti paca) bred in captivity was developed for providing biological data on one of the largest American wild rodents, as not many references exist in the literature about this species. Two newborn males, two adult males (9 and 72 months old), one newborn female and two adult females (30 and 54 months old) were used after death due to fights, neonatal cannibalism or unknown causes. Animals were radiographed, and their teeth were extracted and put on an acrylic resin block, cut on a diamond-like disc microtome and diaphanized. It was noted that enamel surrounds the coronary dentine and projects to the root region, besides being present as internal laminae, arranged in a parallel way and in the vestibulolingual direction. The dentine is located between the enamel laminae and surrounds the pulp horns. The cementum is located internal to the enamel laminae. From scanning electronic microscopy, we find that the enamel is the outer element on the vestibular surface, and it is in direct contact with the dentine. On the lingual surface, the cementum and dentine are the outer elements. PMID:17845228

  4. Agouti-related peptide neural circuits mediate adaptive behaviors in the starved state.

    PubMed

    Padilla, Stephanie L; Qiu, Jian; Soden, Marta E; Sanz, Elisenda; Nestor, Casey C; Barker, Forrest D; Quintana, Albert; Zweifel, Larry S; Rønnekleiv, Oline K; Kelly, Martin J; Palmiter, Richard D

    2016-05-01

    In the face of starvation, animals will engage in high-risk behaviors that would normally be considered maladaptive. Starving rodents, for example, will forage in areas that are more susceptible to predators and will also modulate aggressive behavior within a territory of limited or depleted nutrients. The neural basis of these adaptive behaviors likely involves circuits that link innate feeding, aggression and fear. Hypothalamic agouti-related peptide (AgRP)-expressing neurons are critically important for driving feeding and project axons to brain regions implicated in aggression and fear. Using circuit-mapping techniques in mice, we define a disynaptic network originating from a subset of AgRP neurons that project to the medial nucleus of the amygdala and then to the principal bed nucleus of the stria terminalis, which suppresses territorial aggression and reduces contextual fear. We propose that AgRP neurons serve as a master switch capable of coordinating behavioral decisions relative to internal state and environmental cues. PMID:27019015

  5. Agouti signalling protein (ASIP) gene: molecular cloning, sequence characterisation and tissue distribution in domestic goose.

    PubMed

    Zhang, J; Wang, C; Liu, Y; Liu, J; Wang, H Y; Liu, A F; He, D Q

    2016-06-01

    Agouti signalling protein (ASIP) is an endogenous antagonist of melanocortin-1 receptor (MC1R) and is involved in the regulation of pigmentation in mammals. The objective of this study was to identify and characterise the ASIP gene in domestic goose. The goose ASIP cDNA consisted of a 44-nucleotide 5'-terminal untranslated region (UTR), a 390-nucleotide open-reading frame (ORF) and a 45-nucleotide 3'-UTR. The length of goose ASIP genomic DNA was 6176 bp, including three coding exons and two introns. Bioinformatic analysis indicated that the ORF encodes a protein of 130 amino-acid residues with a molecular weight of 14.88 kDa and an isoelectric point of 9.73. Multiple sequence alignments and phylogenetic analysis showed that the amino-acid sequence of ASIP was conserved in vertebrates, especially in the avian species. RT-qPCR showed that the goose ASIP mRNA was differentially expressed in the pigment deposition tissues, including eye, foot, feather follicle, skin of the back, as well as in skin of the abdomen. The expression level of the ASIP gene in skin of the abdomen was higher than that in skin of the back. Those findings will contribute to further understanding the functions of the ASIP gene in geese plumage colouring. PMID:26750999

  6. Conserved distal promoter of the agouti signaling protein (ASIP) gene controls sexual dichromatism in chickens.

    PubMed

    Oribe, Eri; Fukao, Ayaka; Yoshihara, Chihiro; Mendori, Misa; Rosal, Karen G; Takahashi, Sumio; Takeuchi, Sakae

    2012-06-01

    Brilliant plumage is typical of male birds, thus sexual plumage dichromatism is seen in many avian species; however, the molecular mechanism underlying this remains unclear. The agouti signaling protein (ASIP) is a paracrine factor that stimulates yellow/red pigment (pheomelanin) synthesis and inhibits black/brown pigment (eumelanin) synthesis in follicular melanocytes. In mammals, the distal promoter of the ASIP gene acts exclusively on the ventral side of the body to create a countershading pigmentation pattern by stimulating pheomelanin synthesis in the ventrum. Here, we examined the role of the distal ASIP promoter in controlling estrogen-dependent sexual dichromatism in chickens. Reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction analyses revealed that ASIP class 1 mRNAs transcribed by the distal promoter were expressed exclusively on the ventral side of chicks and adult females displaying countershading. In showy adult males, the ASIP class 1 mRNAs were expressed in gold-colored ornamental feathers grown on the back. In the presence of estrogen, males molted into female-like plumage and ASIP class 1 mRNAs expression was altered to female patterns. These results suggest that the distal ASIP promoter produces countershading in chicks and adult females, similar to the ventral-specific ASIP promoter in mammals. In addition, the class 1 promoter plays an important role for creating sexual plumage dichromatism controlled by estrogen. This is the first evidence for a pigmentation gene having been modified in its expression during evolution to develop phenotypic diversity between individuals of different sexes. PMID:22554923

  7. Elaborate color patterns of individual chicken feathers may be formed by the agouti signaling protein.

    PubMed

    Yoshihara, Chihiro; Fukao, Ayaka; Ando, Keita; Tashiro, Yuichi; Taniuchi, Shusuke; Takahashi, Sumio; Takeuchi, Sakae

    2012-02-01

    Hair and feather pigmentation is mainly determined by the distribution of two kinds of melanin, eumelanin and pheomelanin, which produce brown to black and yellow to red colorations, respectively. The agouti signaling protein (ASIP) acts as an antagonist or an inverse agonist of the melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R), a G protein-coupled receptor for α-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (α-MSH). This antagonism of the MC1R by ASIP on melanocytes initiates a switch of melanin synthesis from eumelanogenesis to pheomelanogenesis in mammals. In the present study, we isolated multiple ASIP mRNA variants generated by alternative splicing and promoters in chicken feather follicles. The mRNA variants showed a discrete tissue distribution. However, mRNAs were expressed predominantly in the feather pulp of follicles. Paralleling mRNA distribution, ASIP immunoreactivity was observed in feather pulp. Interestingly, ASIP was stained with pheomelanin but not eumelanin in pulp areas that face developing barbs. We suggest that the elaborate color pattern of individual feathers is formed in part by the antagonistic action of ASIP that is produced by multiple mRNA variants in chicken feather follicles. PMID:22202606

  8. A polymorphism in the agouti signalling protein (ASIP) is associated with decreased levels of mRNA.

    PubMed

    Voisey, J; Gomez-Cabrera, M Del C; Smit, D J; Leonard, J H; Sturm, R A; van Daal, A

    2006-06-01

    To date, a role for agouti signalling protein (ASIP) in human pigmentation has not been well characterized. It is known that agouti plays a pivotal role in the pigment switch from the dark eumelanin to the light pheomelanin in the mouse. However, because humans do not have an agouti banded hair pattern, its role in human pigmentation has been questioned. We previously identified a single polymorphism in the 3'-untranslated region (UTR) of ASIP that was found at a higher frequency in African-Americans compared with other population groups. To compare allele frequencies between European-Australians and indigenous Australians, the g.8818A --> G polymorphism was genotyped. Significant differences were seen in allele frequencies between these groups (P < 0.0001) with carriage of the G allele highest in Australian Aborigines. In the Caucasian sample set a strong association was observed between the G allele and dark hair colour (P = 0.004) (odds ratio 4.6; 95% CI 1.4-15.27). The functional consequences of this polymorphism are not known but it was postulated that it might result in message instability and premature degradation of the transcript. To test this hypothesis, ASIP mRNA levels were quantified in melanocytes carrying the variant and non-variant alleles. Using quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction the mean ASIP mRNA ratio of the AA genotype to the AG genotype was 12 (P < 0.05). This study suggests that the 3'-UTR polymorphism results in decreased levels of ASIP and therefore less pheomelanin production. PMID:16704456

  9. Biased signaling initiated by agouti-related peptide through human melanocortin-3 and -4 receptors.

    PubMed

    Yang, Zhao; Tao, Ya-Xiong

    2016-09-01

    The neural melanocortin receptors (MCRs), melanocortin-3 and -4 receptors (MC3R and MC4R), have been increasingly recognized as important regulators of energy homeostasis. The orexigenic agouti-related peptide (AgRP), initially identified as an endogenous antagonist for both neural MCRs, has been suggested to be a biased agonist of MC4R independent of its antagonizing effects. In the present study, we sought to determine the potential of AgRP to regulate the activation of intracellular kinases, including extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1 and 2 (ERK1/2), AKT and AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK), through neural MCRs. We showed that AgRP acted as a biased agonist in human MC3R (hMC3R), decreasing cAMP activity of constitutively active mutant (F347A) hMC3R but stimulating ERK1/2 activation in both wide type and F347A hMC3Rs. AgRP-stimulated ERK1/2 phosphorylation through MC3R was abolished by protein kinase A (PKA) inhibitor H-89 but not Rp-cAMPS, whereas AgRP-initiated ERK1/2 activation through MC4R was inhibited by phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K) inhibitors wortmannin and LY294002. Both NDP-MSH and AgRP treatment induced significant AKT phosphorylation in GT1-7 cells but not in MC3R- or MC4R-transfected HEK293T cells. The phosphorylated AMPK levels in both GT1-7 cells and HERK293T cells transfected with neural MCRs were significantly decreased upon stimulation with NDP-MSH but not with AgRP. In summary, we provided novel data for AgRP-initiated multiple intracellular signaling pathways, demonstrating biased agonism of AgRP in both neural MCRs, leading to a better understanding of neural MCR pharmacology. PMID:27208795

  10. Transient Ectopic Overexpression of Agouti-Signalling Protein 1 (Asip1) Induces Pigment Anomalies in Flatfish

    PubMed Central

    Cal, Rosa; Rotllant, Josep; Cerdá-Reverter, José Miguel

    2012-01-01

    While flatfish in the wild exhibit a pronounced countershading of the dorso-ventral pigment pattern, malpigmentation is commonly observed in reared animals. In fish, the dorso-ventral pigment polarity is achieved because a melanization inhibition factor (MIF) inhibits melanoblast differentiation and encourages iridophore proliferation in the ventrum. A previous work of our group suggested that asip1 is the uncharacterized MIF concerned. In order to further support this hypothesis, we have characterized asip1 mRNAs in both turbot and sole and used deduced peptide alignments to analyze the evolutionary history of the agouti-family of peptides. The putative asip precursors have the characteristics of a secreted protein, displaying a putative hydrophobic signal. Processing of the potential signal peptide produces mature proteins that include an N-terminal region, a basic central domain with a high proportion of lysine residues as well as a proline-rich region that immediately precedes the C-terminal poly-cysteine domain. The expression of asip1 mRNA in the ventral area was significantly higher than in the dorsal region. Similarly, the expression of asip1 within the unpigmented patches in the dorsal skin of pseudoalbino fish was higher than in the pigmented dorsal regions but similar to those levels observed in the ventral skin. In addition, the injection/electroporation of asip1 capped mRNA in both species induced long term dorsal skin paling, suggesting the inhibition of the melanogenic pathways. The data suggest that fish asip1 is involved in the dorsal-ventral pigment patterning in adult fish, where it induces the regulatory asymmetry involved in precursor differentiation into mature chromatophore. Adult dorsal pseudoalbinism seems to be the consequence of the expression of normal developmental pathways in an inaccurate position that results in unbalanced asip1 production levels. This, in turn, generates a ventral-like differentiation environment in dorsal regions

  11. Molecular characterization of a region of DNA associated with mutations at the agouti locus in the mouse.

    PubMed Central

    Bultman, S J; Russell, L B; Gutierrez-Espeleta, G A; Woychik, R P

    1991-01-01

    Molecular characterization of a radiation-induced agouti (a)-locus mutation has resulted in the isolation of a segment of DNA that maps at or near the a locus on chromosome 2 in the mouse. This region of DNA is deleted in several radiation- or chemical-induced homozygous-lethal a-locus mutations and is associated with specific DNA structural alterations in two viable a-locus mutations. We propose that DNA probes from this region of chromosome 2 will be useful for ultimately characterizing the individual gene or genes associated with a-locus function. Images PMID:1896452

  12. A novel radiofluorinated agouti-related protein for tumor angiogenesis imaging.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Han; Moore, Sarah J; Liu, Shuanglong; Liu, Hongguang; Miao, Zheng; Cochran, Frank V; Liu, Yang; Tian, Mei; Cochran, Jennifer R; Zhang, Hong; Cheng, Zhen

    2013-02-01

    A novel protein scaffold based on the cystine knot domain of the agouti-related protein (AgRP) has been used to engineer mutants that can bind to the α(v)β(3) integrin receptor with high affinity and specificity. In the current study, an (18)F-labeled AgRP mutant (7C) was prepared and evaluated as a positron emission tomography (PET) probe for imaging tumor angiogenesis. AgRP-7C was synthesized by solid phase peptide synthesis and site-specifically conjugated with 4-nitrophenyl 2-(18/19)F-fluoropropionate ((18/19)F-NFP) to produce the fluorinated peptide, (18/19)F-FP-AgRP-7C. Competition binding assays were used to measure the relative affinities of AgRP-7C and (19)F-FP-AgRP-7C to human glioblastoma U87MG cells that overexpress α(v)β(3) integrin. In addition, biodistribution, metabolic stability, and small animal PET imaging studies were conducted with (18)F-FP-AgRP-7C using U87MG tumor-bearing mice. Both AgRP-7C and (19)F-FP-AgRP-7C specifically competed with (125)I-echistatin for binding to U87MG cells with half maximal inhibitory concentration (IC(50)) values of 9.40 and 8.37 nM, respectively. Non-invasive small animal PET imaging revealed that (18)F-FP-AgRP-7C exhibited rapid and good tumor uptake (3.24 percentage injected dose per gram [% ID/g] at 0.5 h post injection [p.i.]). The probe was rapidly cleared from the blood and from most organs, resulting in excellent tumor-to-normal tissue contrasts. Tumor uptake and rapid clearance were further confirmed with biodistribution studies. Furthermore, co-injection of (18)F-FP-AgRP-7C with a large molar excess of blocking peptide c(RGDyK) significantly inhibited tumor uptake in U87MG xenograft models, demonstrating the integrin-targeting specificity of the probe. Metabolite assays showed that the probe had high stability, making it suitable for in vivo applications. (18)F-FP-AgRP-7C exhibits promising in vivo properties such as rapid tumor targeting, good tumor uptake, and excellent tumor-to-normal tissue ratios

  13. Age-related changes in spleen of Dark Agouti rats immunized for experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis.

    PubMed

    Djikić, Jasmina; Nacka-Aleksić, Mirjana; Pilipović, Ivan; Kosec, Duško; Arsenović-Ranin, Nevena; Stojić-Vukanić, Zorica; Dimitrijević, Mirjana; Leposavić, Gordana

    2015-01-15

    The study was undertaken considering age-related changes in susceptibility to experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) and a putative role of spleen in pathogenesis of this disease. The phenotypic and functional characteristics of T splenocytes were examined in young (3-month-old), middle-aged (8-month-old) and aged (26-month-old) Dark Agouti rats immunized for EAE with rat spinal cord in complete Freund's adjuvant. The rat susceptibility to EAE induction, as well as the number of activated CD4+CD134+ lymphocytes retrieved from their spinal cords progressively decreased with aging. To the contrary, in rats immunized for EAE the number of activated CD4+ splenocytes, i.e., CD4+CD134+, CD4+CD25+FoxP3- and CD4+CD40L+ cells, progressively increased with aging. This was associated with age-related increase in (i) CD4+ splenocyte surface expression of CD44, the molecule suggested to be involved in limiting emigration of encephalitogenic CD4+ cells from spleen into blood and (ii) frequency of regulatory T cells, including CD4+CD25+FoxP3+ cells, which are also shown to control encephalitogenic cell migration from spleen into the central nervous system. In favor of expansion of T-regulatory cell pool in aged rats was the greater concentration of IL-10 in unstimulated, Concanavalin A (ConA)- and myelin basic protein (MBP)-stimulated splenocyte cultures from aged rats compared with the corresponding cultures from young ones. Consistent with the age-related increase in the expression of CD44, which is shown to favor Th1 effector cell survival by interfering with CD95-mediated signaling, the frequency of apoptotic cells among CD4+ splenocytes, despite the greater frequency of CD95+ cells, was diminished in splenocyte cultures from aged compared with young rats. In addition, in control, as well as in ConA- and MBP-stimulated splenocyte cultures from aged rats, despite of impaired CD4+ cell proliferation, IFN-γ concentrations were greater than in corresponding cultures

  14. Who's behind that mask and cape? The Asian leopard cat's Agouti (ASIP) allele likely affects coat colour phenotype in the Bengal cat breed.

    PubMed

    Gershony, L C; Penedo, M C T; Davis, B W; Murphy, W J; Helps, C R; Lyons, L A

    2014-12-01

    Coat colours and patterns are highly variable in cats and are determined mainly by several genes with Mendelian inheritance. A 2-bp deletion in agouti signalling protein (ASIP) is associated with melanism in domestic cats. Bengal cats are hybrids between domestic cats and Asian leopard cats (Prionailurus bengalensis), and the charcoal coat colouration/pattern in Bengals presents as a possible incomplete melanism. The complete coding region of ASIP was directly sequenced in Asian leopard, domestic and Bengal cats. Twenty-seven variants were identified between domestic and leopard cats and were investigated in Bengals and Savannahs, a hybrid with servals (Leptailurus serval). The leopard cat ASIP haplotype was distinguished from domestic cat by four synonymous and four non-synonymous exonic SNPs, as well as 19 intronic variants, including a 42-bp deletion in intron 4. Fifty-six of 64 reported charcoal cats were compound heterozygotes at ASIP, with leopard cat agouti (A(P) (be) ) and domestic cat non-agouti (a) haplotypes. Twenty-four Bengals had an additional unique haplotype (A2) for exon 2 that was not identified in leopard cats, servals or jungle cats (Felis chaus). The compound heterozygote state suggests the leopard cat allele, in combination with the recessive non-agouti allele, influences Bengal markings, producing a darker, yet not completely melanistic coat. This is the first validation of a leopard cat allele segregating in the Bengal breed and likely affecting their overall pelage phenotype. Genetic testing services need to be aware of the possible segregation of wild felid alleles in all assays performed on hybrid cats. PMID:25143047

  15. Neuropeptide Y and Agouti-Related Peptide Mediate Complementary Functions of Hyperphagia and Reduced Energy Expenditure in Leptin Receptor Deficiency

    PubMed Central

    Luo, Na; Marcelin, Genevieve; Liu, Shun Mei; Schwartz, Gary

    2011-01-01

    Neuropeptide Y (NPY) and agouti-related peptide (AGRP) can produce hyperphagia, reduce energy expenditure, and promote triglyceride deposition in adipose depots. As these two neuropeptides are coexpressed within the hypothalamic arcuate nucleus and mediate a major portion of the obesity caused by leptin signaling deficiency, we sought to determine whether the two neuropeptides mediated identical or complementary actions. Because of separate neuropeptide receptors and signal transduction mechanisms, there is a possibility of distinct encoding systems for the feeding and energy expenditure aspects of leptin-regulated metabolism. We have genetically added NPY deficiency and/or AGRP deficiency to LEPR deficiency isolated to AGRP cells. Our results indicate that the obesity of LEPR deficiency in AGRP/NPY neurons can produce obesity with either AGRP or NPY alone with AGRP producing hyperphagia while NPY promotes reduced energy expenditure. The absence of both NPY and AGRP prevents the development of obesity attributable to isolated LEPR deficiency in AGRP/NPY neurons. Operant behavioral testing indicated that there were no alterations in the reward for a food pellet from the AGRP-specific LEPR deficiency. PMID:21285324

  16. Regulation of the mesocorticolimbic and mesostriatal dopamine systems by α-melanocyte stimulating hormone and agouti-related protein.

    PubMed

    Roseberry, Aaron G; Stuhrman, Katherine; Dunigan, Anna I

    2015-09-01

    The melanocortin system of the hypothalamus, including the neuropeptides α-melanocyte stimulating hormone (αMSH) and agouti-related protein (AgRP), and their receptors, the melanocortin-3 receptor (MC3R) and melanocortin-4 receptor (MC4R), have been well-studied for their roles in the central control of feeding and body weight. In this review, we discuss the evidence demonstrating that αMSH and AgRP also act on the mesocorticolimbic and mesostriatal dopamine systems to regulate a wide variety of behaviors. In addition to the well described ability of αMSH to increase dopamine transmission and to increase grooming and rearing when injected directly into the ventral tegmental area, a growing body of evidence indicates that αMSH and AgRP can also act on dopamine pathways to regulate feeding and drug abuse, including reward-related behaviors toward food and drugs. Increasing our understanding of how αMSH and AgRP act on dopamine pathways to affect behavior may allow for identification of new strategies to combat disorders involving dysfunction of dopamine pathways, such as obesity and drug abuse. PMID:26116876

  17. Phosphodiesterase inhibitor-dependent inverse agonism of agouti-related protein on melanocortin 4 receptor in sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax)

    PubMed Central

    Sánchez, Elisa; Rubio, Vera Cruz; Thompson, Darren; Metz, Juriaan; Flik, Gert; Millhauser, Glenn L.; Cerdá-Reverter, José Miguel

    2009-01-01

    The melanocortin 4 receptor (MC4R) is a G protein-coupled receptor mainly expressed in the central nervous system of vertebrates. Activation of the MC4R leads to a decrease in food intake, whereas inactivating mutations are a genetic cause of obesity. The binding of agouti-related protein (AGRP) reduces not only agonist-stimulated cAMP production (competitive antagonist) but also the basal activity of the receptor, as an inverse agonist. Transgenic zebrafish overexpressing AGRP display increased food intake and linear growth, indicative of a physiological role for the melanocortin system in the control of the energy balance in fish. We report on the cloning, pharmacological characterization, tissue distribution, and detailed brain mapping of a sea bass (Dicentrarchus labrax) MC4R ortholog. Sea bass MC4R is profusely expressed within food intake-controlling pathways of the fish brain. However, the activity of the melanocortin system during progressive fasting does not depend on the hypothalamic/pituitary proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and MC4R expression, which suggests that sea bass MC4R is constitutively activated and regulated by AGRP binding. We demonstrate that AGRP acts as competitive antagonist and reduces MTII-induced cAMP production. AGRP also decreases the basal activity of the receptor as an inverse agonist. This observation suggests that MC4R is constitutively active and supports the evolutionary conservation of the AGRP/MC4R interactions. The inverse agonism, but not the competitive antagonism, depends on the presence of a phosphodiesterase inhibitor (IBMX). This suggests that inverse agonism and competitive antagonism operate through different intracellular signaling pathways, a view that opens up new targets for the treatment of melanocortin-induced metabolic syndrome. PMID:19225141

  18. Proopiomelanocortin, agouti-related protein, and leptin in human cerebrospinal fluid: correlations with body weight and adiposity.

    PubMed

    Page-Wilson, Gabrielle; Meece, Kana; White, Anne; Rosenbaum, Michael; Leibel, Rudolph L; Smiley, Richard; Wardlaw, Sharon L

    2015-09-01

    Leptin and its neuronal targets, which produce proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and agouti-related protein (AgRP), regulate energy balance. This study characterized leptin, POMC, and AgRP in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of 47 healthy human subjects, 23 lean and 24 overweight/obese (OW/OB), as related to BMI, adiposity, plasma leptin, soluble leptin receptor (s-OB-R), and insulin. POMC was measured since the POMC prohormone is the predominant POMC peptide in CSF and correlates with hypothalamic POMC in rodents. Plasma AgRP was similarly characterized. CSF leptin was 83-fold lower than in plasma and correlated strongly with BMI, body fat, and insulin. The relative amount of leptin transported into CSF declined with increasing BMI, ranging from 4.5 to 0.52%, consistent with a saturable transport mechanism. CSF sOB-R was 78-fold lower than in plasma and correlated negatively with plasma and CSF leptin. CSF POMC was higher in lean vs. OW/OB subjects (P < 0.001) and correlated negatively with CSF leptin (r = -0.60, P < 0.001) and with plasma leptin, insulin, BMI, and adiposity. CSF AgRP was not different in lean vs. OW/OB; however, plasma AgRP was higher in lean subjects (P = 0.001) and correlated negatively with BMI, adiposity, leptin, insulin, and HOMA (P < 0.005). Thus, CSF measurements may provide useful biomarkers for brain leptin and POMC activity. The striking negative correlation between CSF leptin and POMC could be secondary to leptin resistance and/or neuronal changes associated with obesity but may also indicate that POMC plays a primary role in regulating body weight and adiposity. The role of plasma AgRP as a neuroendocrine biomarker deserves further study. PMID:26152765

  19. Hypothalamic Expression of Melanocortin-4 Receptor and Agouti-related Peptide mRNAs During the Estrous Cycle of Rats

    PubMed Central

    Zandi, Mohammad Reza; Jafarzadeh Shirazi, Mohammad Reza; Tamadon, Amin; Akhlaghi, Amir; Salehi, Mohammad Saied; Niazi, Ali; Moghadam, Ali

    2014-01-01

    Melanocortin- 4 receptor (MC4R) and agouti- related peptide (AgRP) are involved in energy homeostasis in rats. According to MC4R and AgRP effects on luteinizing hormone (LH) secretion, they may influence the estrous cycle of rats. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate the expression of MC4R and AgRP mRNAs at different stages of estrous cycle in the rat’s hypothalamus. The estrous cycle stages (proestrus, estrus, metestrus and diestrus) were determined in 20 adult female rats using vaginal smears. The rats were divided into four equal groups (n=5). Four ovariectomized rats were selected as controls two weeks after surgery. Using real- time PCR, relative expressions (compared to controls) of MC4R and AgRP mRNAs in the hypothalamus of rats were compared in four different groups of estrous cycle. The relative expression of MC4R mRNA in the hypothalamus of female rats during proestrus stage was higher than those in other stages (P=0.001). Despite a lower mean of relative expression of AgRP mRNA at proestrus stage, the relative expression of AgRP mRNA of the four stages of estrous cycle did not differ (P>0.05). In conclusion, changes in the relative expression of MC4R and AgRP mRNAs in four stages of rat estrous cycle indicated a stimulatory role of MC4R in the proestrus and preovulatory stages and an inhibitory role of AgRP in gonadotropin releasing hormone (GnRH) and LH secretions. PMID:25317405

  20. Long-Term Effects of (-)-Epigallocatechin Gallate (EGCG) on Pristane-Induced Arthritis (PIA) in Female Dark Agouti Rats.

    PubMed

    Leichsenring, Anna; Bäcker, Ingo; Furtmüller, Paul G; Obinger, Christian; Lange, Franziska; Flemmig, Jörg

    2016-01-01

    Rheumatoid arthritis (RA)-a widespread chronic inflammatory disease in industrialized countries-is characterized by a persistent and progressive joint destruction. The chronic pro-inflammatory state results from a mutual activation of the innate and the adaptive immune system, while the exact pathogenesis mechanism is still under discussion. New data suggest a role of the innate immune system and especially polymorphonuclear granulocytes (PMNs, neutrophils) not only during onset and the destructive phase of RA but also at the chronification of the disease. Thereby the enzymatic activity of myeloperoxidase (MPO), a peroxidase strongly abundant in neutrophils, may be important: While its peroxidase activity is known to contribute to cartilage destruction at later stages of RA the almost MPO-specific oxidant hypochlorous acid (HOCl) is also discussed for certain anti-inflammatory effects. In this study we used pristane-induced arthritis (PIA) in Dark Agouti rats as a model for the chronic course of RA in man. We were able to shown that a specific detection of the HOCl-producing MPO activity provides a sensitive new marker to evaluate the actual systemic inflammatory status which is only partially detectable by the evaluation of clinical symptoms (joint swelling and redness measurements). Moreover, we evaluated the long-term pharmacological effect of the well-known anti-inflammatory flavonoid epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). Thereby only upon early and continuous oral application of this polyphenol the arthritic symptoms were considerably diminished both in the acute and in the chronic phase of the disease. The obtained results were comparable to the treatment control (application of methotrexate, MTX). As revealed by stopped-flow kinetic measurements, EGCG may regenerate the HOCl-production of MPO which is known to be impaired at chronic inflammatory diseases like RA. It can be speculated that this MPO activity-promoting effect of EGCG may contribute to the

  1. Hypothalamic Agouti-Related Peptide mRNA is Elevated During Natural and Stress-Induced Anorexia.

    PubMed

    Dunn, I C; Wilson, P W; D'Eath, R B; Boswell, T

    2015-09-01

    As part of their natural lives, animals can undergo periods of voluntarily reduced food intake and body weight (i.e. animal anorexias) that are beneficial for survival or breeding, such as during territorial behaviour, hibernation, migration and incubation of eggs. For incubation, a change in the defended level of body weight or 'sliding set point' appears to be involved, although the neural mechanisms reponsible for this are unknown. We investigated how neuropeptide gene expression in the arcuate nucleus of the domestic chicken responded to a 60-70% voluntary reduction in food intake measured both after incubation and after an environmental stressor involving transfer to unfamiliar housing. We hypothesised that gene expression would not change in these circumstances because the reduced food intake and body weight represented a defended level in birds with free access to food. Unexpectedly, we observed increased gene expression of the orexigenic peptide agouti-related peptide (AgRP) in both incubating and transferred animals compared to controls. Also pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) mRNA was higher in incubating hens and significantly increased 6 days after exposure to the stressor. Conversely expression of neuropeptide Y and cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript gene was unchanged in both experimental situations. We conclude that AgRP expression remains sensitive to the level of energy stores during natural anorexias, which is of adaptive advantage, although its normal orexigenic effects are over-ridden by inhibitory signals. In the case of stress-induced anorexia, increased POMC may contribute to this inhibitory role, whereas, for incubation, reduced feeding may also be associated with increased expression in the hypothalamus of the anorexigenic peptide vasoactive intestinal peptide. PMID:26017156

  2. Electroacupuncture Improves Insulin Resistance by Reducing Neuroprotein Y/Agouti-Related Protein Levels and Inhibiting Expression of Protein Tyrosine Phosphatase 1B in Diet-induced Obese Rats.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xia; He, Jun-Feng; Qu, Ya-Ting; Liu, Zhi-Jun; Pu, Qing-Yang; Guo, Sheng-Tong; Du, Jia; Jiang, Peng-Fei

    2016-04-01

    Electroacupuncture (EA) has been shown to exert beneficial effects on obesity, but the mechanism is unclear. This study investigated the effects of EA on diet-induced obese (DIO) rats. Fifty male Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into low-fat diet (LFD, 10 rats) and high-fat diet (HFD, 40 rats) groups. After the DIO models had been established, successful model rats were randomly divided into HFD, EA, and orlistat (OLST) groups. The EA group received EA at Zusanli (ST36) and Quchi (LI11) for 20 minutes once per day for 28 days. The OLST group was treated with orlistat by gavage. The body weight, homeostasis model assessment-insulin resistance index, adipocyte diameters, and neuroprotein Y/agouti-related protein and protein tyrosine phosphatase 1B levels were significantly lower in the EA group than in the HFD group. The rats of the OLST group showed watery stools and yellow hairs whereas those of the EA group had regular stools and sleek coats. The effect of EA on weight loss may be related to improved insulin resistance caused by changes in the adipocyte size and by reductions in the expressions of neuroprotein Y/agouti-related protein and protein tyrosine phosphatase 1B. This study indicates that EA may be a better method of alternative therapy for treating obesity and other metabolic diseases. PMID:27079226

  3. Agouti Revisited: Transcript Quantification of the ASIP Gene in Bovine Tissues Related to Protein Expression and Localization

    PubMed Central

    Albrecht, Elke; Komolka, Katrin; Kuzinski, Judith; Maak, Steffen

    2012-01-01

    Beside its role in melanogenesis, the agouti signaling protein (ASIP) has been related to obesity. The potentially crucial role in adipocyte development makes it a tempting candidate for economic relevant, fat related traits in farm animals. The objective of our study was to characterize the mRNA expression of different ASIP transcripts and of putative targets in different bovine tissues, as well as to study consequences on protein abundance and localization. ASIP mRNA abundance was determined by RT-qPCR in adipose and further tissues of cattle representing different breeds and crosses. ASIP mRNA was up-regulated more than 9-fold in intramuscular fat of Japanese Black cattle compared to Holstein (p<0.001). Further analyses revealed that a transposon-derived transcript was solely responsible for the increased ASIP mRNA abundance. This transcript was observed in single individuals of different breeds indicating a wide spread occurrence of this insertion at the ASIP locus in cattle. The protein was detected in different adipose tissues, skin, lung and liver, but not in skeletal muscle by Western blot with a bovine-specific ASIP antibody. However, the protein abundance was not related to the observed ASIP mRNA over-expression. Immuno-histochemical analyses revealed a putative nuclear localization of ASIP additionally to the expected cytosolic signal in different cell types. The expression of melanocortin receptors (MCR) 1 to 5 as potential targets for ASIP was analyzed by RT-PCR in subcutaneous fat. Only MC1R and MC4R were detected indicating a similar receptor expression like in human adipose tissue. Our results provide evidence for a widespread expression of ASIP in bovine tissues at mRNA and, for the first time, at protein level. ASIP protein is detectable in adipocytes as well as in further cells of adipose tissue. We generated a basis for a more detailed investigation of ASIP function in peripheral tissues of various mammalian species. PMID:22530003

  4. Agouti revisited: transcript quantification of the ASIP gene in bovine tissues related to protein expression and localization.

    PubMed

    Albrecht, Elke; Komolka, Katrin; Kuzinski, Judith; Maak, Steffen

    2012-01-01

    Beside its role in melanogenesis, the agouti signaling protein (ASIP) has been related to obesity. The potentially crucial role in adipocyte development makes it a tempting candidate for economic relevant, fat related traits in farm animals. The objective of our study was to characterize the mRNA expression of different ASIP transcripts and of putative targets in different bovine tissues, as well as to study consequences on protein abundance and localization. ASIP mRNA abundance was determined by RT-qPCR in adipose and further tissues of cattle representing different breeds and crosses. ASIP mRNA was up-regulated more than 9-fold in intramuscular fat of Japanese Black cattle compared to Holstein (p<0.001). Further analyses revealed that a transposon-derived transcript was solely responsible for the increased ASIP mRNA abundance. This transcript was observed in single individuals of different breeds indicating a wide spread occurrence of this insertion at the ASIP locus in cattle. The protein was detected in different adipose tissues, skin, lung and liver, but not in skeletal muscle by Western blot with a bovine-specific ASIP antibody. However, the protein abundance was not related to the observed ASIP mRNA over-expression. Immuno-histochemical analyses revealed a putative nuclear localization of ASIP additionally to the expected cytosolic signal in different cell types. The expression of melanocortin receptors (MCR) 1 to 5 as potential targets for ASIP was analyzed by RT-PCR in subcutaneous fat. Only MC1R and MC4R were detected indicating a similar receptor expression like in human adipose tissue. Our results provide evidence for a widespread expression of ASIP in bovine tissues at mRNA and, for the first time, at protein level. ASIP protein is detectable in adipocytes as well as in further cells of adipose tissue. We generated a basis for a more detailed investigation of ASIP function in peripheral tissues of various mammalian species. PMID:22530003

  5. Agouti signalling protein is an inverse agonist to the wildtype and agonist to the melanic variant of the melanocortin-1 receptor in the grey squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis).

    PubMed

    McRobie, Helen R; King, Linda M; Fanutti, Cristina; Symmons, Martyn F; Coussons, Peter J

    2014-06-27

    The melanocortin-1 receptor (MC1R) is a key regulator of mammalian pigmentation. Melanism in the grey squirrel is associated with an eight amino acid deletion in the mutant melanocortin-1 receptor with 24 base pair deletion (MC1RΔ24) variant. We demonstrate that the MC1RΔ24 exhibits a higher basal activity than the wildtype MC1R (MC1R-wt). We demonstrate that agouti signalling protein (ASIP) is an inverse agonist to the MC1R-wt but is an agonist to the MC1RΔ24. We conclude that the deletion in the MC1RΔ24 leads to a receptor with a high basal activity which is further activated by ASIP. This is the first report of ASIP acting as an agonist to MC1R. PMID:24879893

  6. Ablation of neurons expressing agouti-related protein, but not melanin concentrating hormone, in leptin-deficient mice restores metabolic functions and fertility

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Qi; Whiddon, Benjamin B.; Palmiter, Richard D.

    2012-01-01

    Leptin-deficient (Lepob/ob) mice are obese, diabetic, and infertile. Ablation of neurons that make agouti-related protein (AgRP) in moderately obese adult Lepob/ob mice caused severe anorexia. The mice stopped eating for 2 wk and then gradually recovered. Their body weight fell to within a normal range for WT mice, at which point food intake and glucose tolerance were restored to that of WT mice. Remarkably, both male and female Lepob/ob mice became fertile. Ablation of neurons that express melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH) in adult Lepob/ob mice had no effect on food intake, body weight, or fertility, but resulted in improved glucose tolerance. We conclude that AgRP-expressing neurons play a critical role in mediating the metabolic syndrome and infertility of Lepob/ob mice, whereas MCH-expressing neurons have only a minor role. PMID:22232663

  7. Association between diencephalic thyroliberin and arterial blood pressure in agouti-yellow and ob/ob mice may be mediated by leptin.

    PubMed

    Burgueño, Adriana L; Landa, Maria S; Schuman, Mariano L; Alvarez, Azucena L; Carabelli, Julieta; García, Silvia I; Pirola, Carlos J

    2007-10-01

    Leptin, a hormone secreted by the adipose tissue, stimulates anorexigenic peptides and also inhibits orexigenic peptides in hypothalamic arcuate nuclei-located neurons. It also counteracts the starvation-induced suppression of thyroid hormones by up-regulating the expression of preproTRH gene. On the other hand, in addition to its role as a modulator of the thyroid-hypothalamic-hypophysial axis, thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TRH) acts as a modulator of the cardiovascular system. In fact, we reported that overexpression of diencephalic TRH (dTRH) induces hypertension. We have recently shown that, in rats with obesity-induced hypertension, hyperleptinemia may produce an increase of dTRH together with an elevation of arterial blood pressure (ABP) through an increase of sympathetic activity and that these alterations were reversed by antisense oligonucleotide and small interfering RNA against preproTRH treatments. Here we explore the possible role of dTRH as a mediator involved in leptin-induced hypertension in 2 obesity mouse models: agouti-yellow mice, which are hyperleptinemic and hypertensive, and ob/ob mice, which lack functional circulating leptin. These 2 models share some characteristics, but ob/ob mice show lower ABP and plasma catecholamines levels. Then, for the first time, we report that there is a clear association between ABP and dTRH levels in both mouse models, as we have found that dTRH content was elevated in agouti-yellow mice and diminished in ob/ob mice compared with their controls. We also show that, after 3 days of subcutaneous leptin injections (10 microg/12 hours), ABP and dTRH increased significantly in ob/ob mice with no alterations of thyroid hormone levels. These results add evidence to the putative molecular mechanisms for the strong association between obesity and hypertension. PMID:17884458

  8. Gene structure of the goldfish agouti-signaling protein: a putative role in the dorsal-ventral pigment pattern of fish.

    PubMed

    Cerdá-Reverter, José Miguel; Haitina, Tatjana; Schiöth, Helgi Birgir; Peter, Richard Ector

    2005-03-01

    One of the most successful chromatic adaptations in vertebrates is the dorsal-ventral pigment pattern in which the dorsal skin is darkly colored, whereas the ventrum is light. In fish, the latter pattern is achieved because a melanization inhibition factor inhibits melanoblast differentiation and supports iridophore proliferation in the ventrum. In rodents, the patterned pigmentation results from regional production of the agouti-signaling protein (ASP). This peptide controls the switch between production of eumelanin and pheomelanin by antagonizing alphaMSH effects on melanocortin receptor (MCR) 1 in the melanocytes. In addition, ASP inhibits the differentiation and proliferation of melanoblast. Thus, the mammalian ASP may be homologous to the poikilotherm melanization inhibition factor. By screening of a genomic library, we deduced the amino acid sequence of goldfish ASP. The ASP gene is a four-exon gene spanning 3097 bp that encodes a 125-amino acid precursor. Northern blot analysis identified two different ASP mRNAs in ventral skin of red- and black-pigmented and albino fish, but no expression levels were observed in the dorsal skin of the same fish. The dorsal-ventral expression polarity was also detected in both black dorsally pigmented fish and albino fish. Pharmacological studies demonstrate that goldfish ASP acts as a melanocortin antagonist at Fugu MC1R and goldfish MC4R. In addition, goldfish ASP inhibited Nle4, D-Phe7-MSH-stimulated pigment dispersion in medaka melanophores. Our studies support agouti signaling protein as the melanization inhibition factor, a key factor in the development of the dorsal-ventral pigment pattern in fish. PMID:15591139

  9. Solid-Phase Peptide Head-to-Side Chain Cyclodimerization: Discovery of C2-Symmetric Cyclic Lactam Hybrid α-Melanocyte-Stimulating Hormone (MSH)/Agouti-Signaling Protein (ASIP) Analogues with Potent Activities at the Human Melanocortin Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Mayorov, Alexander V.; Cai, Minying; Palmer, Erin S.; Liu, Zhihua; Cain, James P.; Vagner, Josef; Trivedi, Dev; Hruby, Victor J.

    2011-01-01

    A novel hybrid melanocortin pharmacophore was designed based on the pharmacophores of the Agouti signaling protein (ASIP), an endogenous melanocortin antagonist, and α-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (α-MSH), an endogenous melanocortin agonist. The designed hybrid ASIP/MSH pharmacophore was explored in monomeric cyclic, and cyclodimeric templates. The monomeric cyclic disulfide series yielded peptides with hMC3R-selective non-competitive binding affinities. The direct on-resin peptide lactam cyclodimerization yielded nanomolar range (25-120 nM) hMC1R-selective full and partial agonists in the cyclodimeric lactam series which demonstrates an improvement over the previous attempts at hybridization of MSH and agouti protein sequences. The secondary structure-oriented pharmacophore hybridization strategy will prove useful in development of unique allosteric and orthosteric melanocortin receptor modulators. This report also illustrates the utility of peptide cyclodimerization for the development of novel GPCR peptide ligands. PMID:20688117

  10. Immediate and prolonged patterns of Agouti-related peptide-(83--132)-induced c-Fos activation in hypothalamic and extrahypothalamic sites.

    PubMed

    Hagan, M M; Benoit, S C; Rushing, P A; Pritchard, L M; Woods, S C; Seeley, R J

    2001-03-01

    Several lines of evidence substantiate the important role of the central nervous system melanocortin 3- and 4-receptor (MC3/4-R) system in the control of food intake and energy balance. Agouti-related peptide (AgRP), an endogenous antagonist of these receptors, produces a robust and unique pattern of increased food intake that lasts up to 7 days after a single injection. Little is known about brain regions that may mediate this powerful effect of AgRP on food intake. To this end we compared c-Fos-like immunoreactivity (c-FLI) in several brain sites of rats injected intracerebroventricularly with 1 nmol AgRP-(83--132) 2 and 24 h before death and compared c-FLI patterns to those induced by another potent orexigenic peptide, neuropeptide Y (NPY). Although both NPY and AgRP induced c-FLI in hypothalamic areas, AgRP also produced increased c-FLI in the accumbens shell and lateral septum. Although NPY elicited no changes in c-FLI 24 h after administration, AgRP induced c-FLI in the accumbens shell, nucleus of the solitary tract, central amygdala, and lateral hypothalamus. These results indicate that an NPY-like hypothalamic circuit mediates the short-term effects of AgRP, but that the unique sustained effect of AgRP on food intake involves a complex circuit of key extrahypothalamic reward and feeding regulatory nuclei. PMID:11181518

  11. Co-infections of the cestode Echinococcus vogeli and the nematode Calodium hepaticum in the hystricomorphic rodent Agouti paca from a forest reserve in Acre, Brazil.

    PubMed

    Almeida, F; Caldas, R; Corrêa, C; Rodrigues-Silva, R; Siqueira, N; Machado-Silva, J R

    2013-12-01

    The helminth fauna of Agouti paca (Linnaeus, 1766) has seldom been studied. In this paper, we report an unusual mixed infection of Echinococcus vogeli Rausch & Bernstein, 1972 and Calodium hepaticum (syn. Capillaria hepatica Bancroft, 1863) in free-ranging paca from a forested region in Acre (Brazil). Gross morphological examination revealed that paca liver contained multiple spherical to subspherical white or translucent lesions, which were isolated or frequently contiguous and partially covered by Glisson's capsule. Microscopic examination revealed unilocular cystic structures that contained abundant brood capsules in which numerous protoscolices budded from the inner surface. The protoscolices possessed rostellar hooks (33-41 μm in length), a morphological characteristic of the blade and calcareous corpuscles that is consistent with the metacestode E. vogeli. The diagnosis of C. hepaticum infection was based on the morphology and morphometry of the egg-shaped ellipsoids with bipolar plugs (44.8 ± 1.9 μm (length) × 24.4 ± 2.0 μm (width)) and liver histopathology. This finding expands the known range of C. hepaticum hosts in South America and, to the best of our knowledge, it is the first case of a mixed infection of E. vogeli and C. hepaticum. Furthermore, our data provide evidence that wild animal meat may be a source of C. hepaticum infection. PMID:23072769

  12. Effects of prophylactic and therapeutic teriflunomide in transcranial magnetic stimulation-induced motor-evoked potentials in the dark agouti rat model of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis.

    PubMed

    Iglesias-Bregna, Deborah; Hanak, Susan; Ji, Zhongqi; Petty, Margaret; Liu, Li; Zhang, Donghui; McMonagle-Strucko, Kathleen

    2013-10-01

    Teriflunomide is a once-daily oral immunomodulatory agent recently approved in the United States for the treatment of relapsing multiple sclerosis (RMS). This study investigated neurophysiological deficits in descending spinal cord motor tracts during experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE; a model of multiple sclerosis) and the functional effectiveness of prophylactic or therapeutic teriflunomide treatment in preventing the debilitating paralysis observed in this model. Relapsing-remitting EAE was induced in Dark Agouti rats using rat spinal cord homogenate. Animals were treated with oral teriflunomide (10 mg/kg daily) prophylactically, therapeutically, or with vehicle (control). Transcranial magnetic motor-evoked potentials were measured throughout the disease to provide quantitative assessment of the neurophysiological status of descending motor tracts. Axonal damage was quantified histologically by silver staining. Both prophylactic and therapeutic teriflunomide treatment significantly reduced maximum EAE disease scores (P < 0.0001 and P = 0.0001, respectively) compared with vehicle-treated rats. Electrophysiological recordings demonstrated that both teriflunomide treatment regimens prevented a delay in wave-form latency and a decrease in wave-form amplitude compared with that observed in vehicle-treated animals. A significant reduction in axonal loss was observed with both teriflunomide treatment regimens compared with vehicle (P < 0.0001 and P = 0.0014, respectively). The results of this study suggest that therapeutic teriflunomide can prevent the deficits observed in this animal model in descending spinal cord motor tracts. The mechanism behind reduced axonal loss and improved motor function may be primarily the reduced inflammation and consequent demyelination observed in these animals through the known effects of teriflunomide on impairing proliferation of stimulated T cells. These findings may have significant implications for patients with RMS

  13. Hypothalamic agouti-related protein expression is affected by both acute and chronic experience of food restriction and re-feeding in chickens.

    PubMed

    Dunn, I C; Wilson, P W; Smulders, T V; Sandilands, V; D'Eath, R B; Boswell, T

    2013-10-01

    The central melanocortin system is conserved across vertebrates. However, in birds, little is known about how energy balance influences orexigenic agouti-related protein (AGRP) and anorexigenic pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) expression, despite the fact that commercial food restriction is critical to the efficient production of poultry meat. To enable contrasts to be made, in broiler-breeder chickens, between levels of food restriction, between birds with the same body weight but different feeding experience, and between birds moved from restricted feeding to ad lib. feeding for different periods, five groups of hens were established between 6 and 12 weeks of age with different combinations of food restriction and release from restriction. AGRP and neuropeptide Y expression in the basal hypothalamus was significantly increased by chronic restriction but only AGRP mRNA levels reflected recent feeding experience: hens at the same body weight that had recently been on ad lib. feeding showed lower expression than restricted birds. AGRP expression also distinguished between hens released from restriction to ad lib. feeding for different periods. By contrast, POMC and cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript mRNA levels were not different. These results showed that AGRP mRNA not only reflected differences between a bird's weight and its potential weight or set point, but also discriminated between differing feeding histories of birds at the same body weight. Therefore, AGRP expression potentially provides an integrated measure of food intake experience and an objective tool to assess a bird's perception of satiety in feeding regimes for improved poultry welfare. PMID:23957836

  14. Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor γ Controls Ingestive Behavior, Agouti-Related Protein, and Neuropeptide Y mRNA in the Arcuate Hypothalamus

    PubMed Central

    Garretson, John T.; Teubner, Brett J.W.; Grove, Kevin L.; Vazdarjanova, Almira; Ryu, Vitaly

    2015-01-01

    Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ (PPARγ) is clinically targeted for type II diabetes treatment; however, rosiglitazone (ROSI), a PPARγ agonist, increases food intake and body/fat mass as side-effects. Mechanisms for these effects and the role of PPARγ in feeding are not understood. Therefore, we tested this role in Siberian hamsters, a model of human energy balance, and C57BL/6 mice. We tested the following: (1) how ROSI and/or GW9662 (2-chloro-5-nitro-N-phenylbenzamide; PPARγ antagonist) injected intraperitoneally or into the third ventricle (3V) affected Siberian hamster feeding behaviors; (2) whether food deprivation (FD) co-increases agouti-related protein (AgRP) and PPARγ mRNA expression in Siberian hamsters and mice; (3) whether intraperitoneally administered ROSI increases AgRP and NPY in ad libitum-fed animals; (4) whether intraperitoneally administered PPARγ antagonism blocks FD-induced increases in AgRP and NPY; and finally, (5) whether intraperitoneally administered PPARγ modulation affects plasma ghrelin. Third ventricular and intraperitoneally administered ROSI increased food hoarding and intake for 7 d, an effect attenuated by 3V GW9662, and also prevented (intraperitoneal) FD-induced feeding. FD hamsters and mice increased AgRP within the arcuate hypothalamic nucleus with concomitant increases in PPARγ exclusively within AgRP/NPY neurons. ROSI increased AgRP and NPY similarly to FD, and GW9662 prevented FD-induced increases in AgRP and NPY in both species. Neither ROSI nor GW9662 affected plasma ghrelin. Thus, we demonstrated that PPARγ activation is sufficient to trigger food hoarding/intake, increase AgRP/NPY, and possibly is necessary for FD-induced increases in feeding and AgRP/NPY. These findings provide initial evidence that FD-induced increases in AgRP/NPY may be a direct PPARγ-dependent process that controls ingestive behaviors. PMID:25788674

  15. Obese gene expression: reduction by fasting and stimulation by insulin and glucose in lean mice, and persistent elevation in acquired (diet-induced) and genetic (yellow agouti) obesity.

    PubMed Central

    Mizuno, T M; Bergen, H; Funabashi, T; Kleopoulos, S P; Zhong, Y G; Bauman, W A; Mobbs, C V

    1996-01-01

    Mutations in the obese (ob) gene lead to obesity. This gene has been recently cloned, but the factors regulating its expression have not been elucidated. To address the regulation of the ob gene with regard to body weight and nutritional factors, Northern blot analysis was used to assess ob mRNA in adipose tissue from mice [lean, obese due to diet, or genetically (yellow agouti) obese] under different nutritional conditions. ob mRNA was elevated in both forms of obesity, compared to lean controls, correlated with elevations in plasma insulin and body weight, but not plasma glucose. In lean C57BL/6J mice, but not in mice with diet-induced obesity, ob mRNA decreased after a 48-hr fast. Similarly, in lean C57BL/6J controls, but not in obese yellow mice, i.p. glucose injection significantly increased ob mRNA. For up to 30 min after glucose injection, ob mRNA in lean mice significantly correlated with plasma glucose, but not with plasma insulin. In a separate study with only lean mice, ob mRNA was inhibited >90% by fasting, and elevated approximately 2-fold 30 min after i.p. injection of either glucose or insulin. These results suggest that in lean animals glucose and insulin enhance ob gene expression. In contrast to our results in lean mice, in obese animals ob mRNA is elevated and relatively insensitive to nutritional state, possibly due to chronic exposure to elevated plasma insulin and/or glucose. Images Fig. 1 Fig. 4 PMID:8622953

  16. Long-Term Effects of (–)-Epigallocatechin Gallate (EGCG) on Pristane-Induced Arthritis (PIA) in Female Dark Agouti Rats

    PubMed Central

    Leichsenring, Anna; Bäcker, Ingo; Furtmüller, Paul G.; Obinger, Christian; Lange, Franziska; Flemmig, Jörg

    2016-01-01

    Rheumatoid arthritis (RA)—a widespread chronic inflammatory disease in industrialized countries—is characterized by a persistent and progressive joint destruction. The chronic pro-inflammatory state results from a mutual activation of the innate and the adaptive immune system, while the exact pathogenesis mechanism is still under discussion. New data suggest a role of the innate immune system and especially polymorphonuclear granulocytes (PMNs, neutrophils) not only during onset and the destructive phase of RA but also at the chronification of the disease. Thereby the enzymatic activity of myeloperoxidase (MPO), a peroxidase strongly abundant in neutrophils, may be important: While its peroxidase activity is known to contribute to cartilage destruction at later stages of RA the almost MPO-specific oxidant hypochlorous acid (HOCl) is also discussed for certain anti-inflammatory effects. In this study we used pristane-induced arthritis (PIA) in Dark Agouti rats as a model for the chronic course of RA in man. We were able to shown that a specific detection of the HOCl-producing MPO activity provides a sensitive new marker to evaluate the actual systemic inflammatory status which is only partially detectable by the evaluation of clinical symptoms (joint swelling and redness measurements). Moreover, we evaluated the long-term pharmacological effect of the well-known anti-inflammatory flavonoid epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). Thereby only upon early and continuous oral application of this polyphenol the arthritic symptoms were considerably diminished both in the acute and in the chronic phase of the disease. The obtained results were comparable to the treatment control (application of methotrexate, MTX). As revealed by stopped-flow kinetic measurements, EGCG may regenerate the HOCl-production of MPO which is known to be impaired at chronic inflammatory diseases like RA. It can be speculated that this MPO activity-promoting effect of EGCG may contribute to the

  17. Maternal exposure to bisphenol A and genistein has minimal effect on A(vy)/a offspring coat color but favors birth of agouti over nonagouti mice.

    PubMed

    Rosenfeld, Cheryl S; Sieli, Paizlee T; Warzak, Denise A; Ellersieck, Mark R; Pennington, Kathleen A; Roberts, R Michael

    2013-01-01

    Reports that maternal diet influences coat color in mouse offspring carrying the agouti A(vy) allele have received considerable attention because the range, from pseudoagouti (brown) to yellow, predicts adult health outcomes, especially disposition toward obesity and diabetes, in yellower mice. Bisphenol A (BPA), an endocrine-disrupting compound with estrogenic properties, fed to a/a dams harboring A(vy)/a conceptuses has been reported to induce a significant shift toward yellower mice, whereas consumption of either genistein (G) alone or in combination with BPA led to greater numbers of healthy, brown offspring. Groups of C57/B6 a/a females, which are nonagouti, were fed either a phytoestrogen-free control diet or one of six experimental diets: diets 1-3 contained BPA (50 mg, 5 mg, and 50 μg BPA/kg food, respectively); diet 4 contained G (250 mg/kg food); diet 5 contained G plus BPA (250 and 50 mg/kg food, respectively); and diet 6 contained 0.1 μg of ethinyl estradiol (EE)/kg food. Mice were bred to A(vy)/a males over multiple parities. In all, 2,824 pups from 426 litters were born. None of the diets provided any significant differences in relative numbers of brown, yellow, or intermediate coat color A(vy)/a offspring. However, BPA plus G (P < 0.0001) and EE diets (P = 0.005), but not the four others, decreased the percentage of black (a/a) to A(vy)/a offspring from the expected Mendelian ratio of 1:1. Data suggest that A(vy)/a conceptuses, which may possess a so-called "thrifty genotype," are at a competitive advantage over a/a conceptuses in certain uterine environments. PMID:23267115

  18. White button and shiitake mushrooms reduce the incidence and severity of collagen-induced arthritis in dilute brown non-agouti mice.

    PubMed

    Chandra, Lawrance; Alexander, Heather; Traoré, Djibril; Lucas, Edralin A; Clarke, Stephen L; Smith, Brenda J; Lightfoot, Stanley A; Kuvibidila, Solo

    2011-01-01

    Exotic mushrooms have been used in ancient Chinese medicine due to their immunomodulatory properties for the treatment and/or prevention of chronic diseases. However, only limited data exist on the health benefits of white button mushrooms (WBM), the most common in the American diet. In the current study, we investigated the effects of WBM and shiitake mushrooms (SM) on collagen-induced arthritis (CIA) using a 2 x 3 factorial design in 8-wk-old female dilute brown non-agouti mice that were fed a control diet (n = 37) or the same diet supplemented with 5% lyophilized WBM or SM (n = 27) for 6 wk. CIA was induced by immunizing mice with 100 µg bovine collagen followed by 50 µg LPS on d 20 post-collagen injection. CIA was assessed by mononuclear cell infiltration, bone erosion, plasma IL-6, TNFα, and intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (sICAM-1) concentrations. Compared with the control diet, WBM and SM tended to reduce the CIA index from 5.11 ± 0.82 to 3.15 ± 0.95 (P = 0.06) (median, 6-9 to 1-2) 31 d post-collagen injection. Whereas 58% of control mice had a CIA index ≥ 7, only 23% of WBM and 29% of SM mice did (P = 0.1). Although both types of mushrooms reduced plasma TNFα (34%, WBM; 64%, SM), only SM increased plasma IL-6 by 1.3-fold (P < 0.05). The CIA index was positively correlated with sICAM1 (r = 0.55; P < 0.05) but negatively correlated with TNFα (r = 0.34; P < 0.05). Whether mushrooms are beneficial for arthritis management remains to be investigated. To our knowledge, this is the first report demonstrating a possible health benefit of WBM in arthritis treatment. PMID:21106932

  19. Strain differences in cytochrome P450 mRNA and protein expression, and enzymatic activity among Sprague Dawley, Wistar, Brown Norway and Dark Agouti rats

    PubMed Central

    NISHIYAMA, Yoshihiro; NAKAYAMA, Shouta M.M.; WATANABE, Kensuke P.; KAWAI, Yusuke K.; OHNO, Marumi; IKENAKA, Yoshinori; ISHIZUKA, Mayumi

    2016-01-01

    Rat cytochrome P450 (CYP) exhibits inter-strain differences, but their analysis has been scattered across studies under different conditions. To identify these strain differences in CYP more comprehensively, mRNA expression, protein expression and metabolic activity among Wistar (WI), Sprague Dawley (SD), Dark Agouti (DA) and Brown Norway (BN) rats were compared. The mRNA level and enzymatic activity of CYP1A1 were highest in SD rats. The rank order of Cyp3a2 mRNA expression mirrored its protein expression, i.e., DA>BN>SD>WI, and was similar to the CYP3A2-dependent warfarin metabolic activity, i.e., DA>SD>BN>WI. These results suggest that the strain differences in CYP3A2 enzymatic activity are caused by differences in mRNA expression. Cyp2b1 mRNA levels, which were higher in DA rats, did not correlate with its protein expression or enzymatic activity. This suggests that the strain differences in enzymatic activity are not related to Cyp2b1 mRNA expression. In conclusion, WI rats tended to have the lowest CYP1A1, 2B1 and 3A2 mRNA expression, protein expression and enzymatic activity among the strains. In addition, SD rats had the highest CYP1A1 mRNA expression and activity, while DA rats had higher CYP2B1 and CYP3A2 mRNA and protein expression. These inter-strain differences in CYP could influence pharmacokinetic considerations in preclinical toxicological studies. PMID:26806536

  20. Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ controls ingestive behavior, agouti-related protein, and neuropeptide Y mRNA in the arcuate hypothalamus.

    PubMed

    Garretson, John T; Teubner, Brett J W; Grove, Kevin L; Vazdarjanova, Almira; Ryu, Vitaly; Bartness, Timothy J

    2015-03-18

    Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ (PPARγ) is clinically targeted for type II diabetes treatment; however, rosiglitazone (ROSI), a PPARγ agonist, increases food intake and body/fat mass as side-effects. Mechanisms for these effects and the role of PPARγ in feeding are not understood. Therefore, we tested this role in Siberian hamsters, a model of human energy balance, and C57BL/6 mice. We tested the following: (1) how ROSI and/or GW9662 (2-chloro-5-nitro-N-phenylbenzamide; PPARγ antagonist) injected intraperitoneally or into the third ventricle (3V) affected Siberian hamster feeding behaviors; (2) whether food deprivation (FD) co-increases agouti-related protein (AgRP) and PPARγ mRNA expression in Siberian hamsters and mice; (3) whether intraperitoneally administered ROSI increases AgRP and NPY in ad libitum-fed animals; (4) whether intraperitoneally administered PPARγ antagonism blocks FD-induced increases in AgRP and NPY; and finally, (5) whether intraperitoneally administered PPARγ modulation affects plasma ghrelin. Third ventricular and intraperitoneally administered ROSI increased food hoarding and intake for 7 d, an effect attenuated by 3V GW9662, and also prevented (intraperitoneal) FD-induced feeding. FD hamsters and mice increased AgRP within the arcuate hypothalamic nucleus with concomitant increases in PPARγ exclusively within AgRP/NPY neurons. ROSI increased AgRP and NPY similarly to FD, and GW9662 prevented FD-induced increases in AgRP and NPY in both species. Neither ROSI nor GW9662 affected plasma ghrelin. Thus, we demonstrated that PPARγ activation is sufficient to trigger food hoarding/intake, increase AgRP/NPY, and possibly is necessary for FD-induced increases in feeding and AgRP/NPY. These findings provide initial evidence that FD-induced increases in AgRP/NPY may be a direct PPARγ-dependent process that controls ingestive behaviors. PMID:25788674

  1. Alpha-Melanocyte-Stimulating Hormone and Agouti-Related Protein: Do They Play a Role in Appetite Regulation in Childhood Obesity?

    PubMed Central

    Vehapoğlu, Aysel; Türkmen, Serdar; Terzioğlu, Şule

    2016-01-01

    Objective: The hypothalamus plays a crucial role in the regulation of feeding behavior. The anorexigenic neuropeptide alpha-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (α-MSH) and the orexigenic neuropeptide agouti-related protein (AgRP) are among the major peptides produced in the hypothalamus. This study investigated the plasma concentrations of α-MSH and AgRP in underweight and obese children and their healthy peers. The associations between α-MSH and AgRP levels and anthropometric and nutritional markers of malnutrition and obesity were also assessed. Methods: Healthy sex-matched subjects aged 2 to 12 years were divided into 3 groups, as underweight (n=57), obese (n=61), and of normal weight (n=57). Plasma fasting concentrations of α-MSH and AgRP were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. The differences between the three groups as to the relationships between plasma concentrations of α-MSH and AgRP and anthropometric data, serum biochemical parameters and homeostatic model assessment of insulin resistance were evaluated. Results: Obese children had significantly lower α-MSH levels than underweight (1194±865 vs. 1904±1312 ng/mL, p=0.006) and normal weight (1194±865 vs. 1762±1463 ng/mL, p=0.036) children; there were no significant differences in the α-MSH levels between the underweight and normal weight children (p=0.811). Also, no significant differences were observed between the underweight and obese children regarding the AgRP levels (742±352 vs. 828±417 ng/mL, p=0.125). We found a significant positive correlation between plasma α-MSH and AgRP levels across the entire sample. Conclusion: This study is the first to demonstrate body weight-related differences in α-MSH and AgRP levels in children. Circulating plasma α-MSH levels in obese children were markedly lower than those of underweight and normal-weight children. This suggests that α-MSH could play a role in appetite regulation. PMID:26758700

  2. A combination of probiotics and whey proteins enhances anti-obesity effects of calcium and dairy products during nutritional energy restriction in aP2-agouti transgenic mice.

    PubMed

    Yoda, Kazutoyo; Sun, Xiaocum; Kawase, Manabu; Kubota, Akira; Miyazawa, Kenji; Harata, Gaku; Hosoda, Masataka; Hiramatsu, Masaru; He, Fang; Zemel, Michael B

    2015-06-14

    Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG, Lactobacillus paracasei TMC0409, Streptococcus thermophilus TMC1543 and whey proteins were used to prepare fermented milk. For the experiment aP2- agouti transgenic mice were pre-treated with a high-sucrose/high-fat diet for 6 weeks to induce obesity. The obese mice were fed a diet containing 1·2% Ca and either non-fat dried milk (NFDM) or probiotic-fermented milk (PFM) with nutritional energy restriction for 6 weeks. The animals were examined after the treatment for changes in body weight, fat pad weight, fatty acid synthase (FAS) activity, lypolysis, the expression levels of genes related to lipid metabolism, insulin sensitivity in adipocytes and skeletal muscle and the presence of biomarkers for oxidative and inflammatory stress in plasma. It was found that the PFM diet significantly reduced body weight, fat accumulation, and adipocyte FAS activity, and increased adipocyte lipolysis as compared with the effects of the NFDM diet (P<0·05). The adipose tissue gene expression of 11β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase 1 (11β-HSD1) was significantly suppressed in mice that were fed PFM as compared with those that were fed NFDM (P<0·05). PFM caused a greater up-regulation of skeletal muscle PPARα, PPARδ, uncoupling protein 3 (UCP3) and GLUT4 expression and a significant decrease in the plasma concentration of insulin, malondialdehyde, TNF-α, monocyte chemotactic protein-1 and C-reactive protein as compared with the effects of NFDM (P<0·05). Fermentation of milk with selected probiotics and supplementation of milk with whey proteins may thus enhance anti-obesity effects of Ca and dairy products by the suppression of adipose tissue lipogenesis, activation of fat oxidation in skeletal muscle and reduction of oxidative and inflammatory stress. PMID:25871498

  3. Placentation in the paca (Agouti paca L)

    PubMed Central

    Bonatelli, Marina; Carter, Anthony M; Machado, Marcia R Fernandes; De Oliveira, Moacir F; de Lima, Marcelo Cardoso; Miglino, Maria Angelica

    2005-01-01

    Background The paca is a South American rodent with potential as a commercial food animal. We examined paca placenta as part of a wider effort to understand the reproductive biology of this species. Methods Thirteen specimens between midgestation and term of pregnancy were studied by light and transmission electron microscopy. Results The placenta is divided into several lobes separated by interlobular trophoblast. Maternal arterial channels and fetal veins are found at the centre of each lobe. In the labyrinth, maternal blood flows through trophoblast-lined lacunae in close proximity to the fetal capillaries. The interhaemal barrier is of the haemomonochorial type with a single layer of syncytiotrophoblast. Caveolae occur in the apical membrane of the syncytiotrophoblast and recesses in the basal membrane, but there is no evidence of transtrophoblastic channels. The interlobular areas consist of cords of syncytiotrophoblast defining maternal blood channels that drain the labyrinth. Yolk sac endoderm covers much of the fetal surface of the placenta. The subplacenta comprises cytotrophoblast and syncytiotrophoblast. There are dilated intercellular spaces between the cytotrophoblasts and lacunae lined by syncytiotrophoblast. In the junctional zone between subplacenta and decidua, there are nests of multinucleated giant cells with vacuolated cytoplasm. The entire placenta rests on a pedicle of maternal tissue. An inverted yolk sac placenta is also present. The presence of small vesicles and tubules in the apical membrane of the yolk sac endoderm and larger vesicles in the supranuclear region suggest that the yolk sac placenta participates in maternal-fetal transfer of protein. Conclusion The paca placenta closely resembles that of other hystricomorph rodents. The lobulated structure allows for a larger exchange area and the development of precocial young. PMID:15737234

  4. Discovery of a β-Hairpin Octapeptide, c[Pro-Arg-Phe-Phe-Dap-Ala-Phe-DPro], Mimetic of Agouti-Related Protein(87-132) [AGRP(87-132)] with Equipotent Mouse Melanocortin-4 Receptor (mMC4R) Antagonist Pharmacology.

    PubMed

    Ericson, Mark D; Wilczynski, Andrzej; Sorensen, Nicholas B; Xiang, Zhimin; Haskell-Luevano, Carrie

    2015-06-11

    Agouti-related protein (AGRP) is a potent orexigenic peptide that antagonizes the melanocortin-3 and -4 receptors (MC3R and MC4R). While the C-terminal domain of AGRP, AGRP(87-132), is equipotent to the full-length peptide, further truncation decreases potency at the MC3R and MC4R. Herein, we report AGRP-derived peptides designed to mimic the active β-hairpin secondary structure that contains the hypothesized Arg-Phe-Phe pharmacophore. The most potent scaffold, c[Pro-Arg-Phe-Phe-Asn-Ala-Phe-DPro], comprised the hexa-peptide β-hairpin loop from AGRP cyclized through a DPro-Pro motif. A 20 compound library was synthesized from this scaffold for further structure-activity relationship studies. The most potent peptide from this library was an asparagine to diaminopropionic acid substitution that possessed sub-nanomolar antagonist activity at the mMC4R and was greater than 160-fold selective for the mMC4R versus the mMC3R. The reported ligands may serve as probes to characterize the melanocortin receptors in vivo and leads in the development of novel therapeutics. PMID:25898270

  5. Ecological Relationships of Meso-Scale Distribution in 25 Neotropical Vertebrate Species

    PubMed Central

    Michalski, Lincoln José; Norris, Darren; de Oliveira, Tadeu Gomes; Michalski, Fernanda

    2015-01-01

    Vertebrates are a vital ecological component of Amazon forest biodiversity. Although vertebrates are a functionally important part of various ecosystem services they continue to be threatened by anthropogenic impacts throughout the Amazon. Here we use a standardized, regularly spaced arrangement of camera traps within 25km2 to provide a baseline assessment of vertebrate species diversity in a sustainable use protected area in the eastern Brazilian Amazon. We examined seasonal differences in the per species encounter rates (number of photos per camera trap and number of cameras with photos). Generalized linear models (GLMs) were then used to examine the influence of five variables (altitude, canopy cover, basal area, distance to nearest river and distance to nearest large river) on the number of photos per species and on functional groups. GLMs were also used to examine the relationships between large predators [Jaguar (Panthera onca) and Puma (Puma concolor)] and their prey. A total of 649 independent photos of 25 species were obtained from 1,800 camera trap days (900 each during wet and dry seasons). Only ungulates and rodents showed significant seasonal differences in the number of photos per camera. The number of photos differed between seasons for only three species (Mazama americana, Dasyprocta leporina and Myoprocta acouchy) all of which were photographed more (3 to 10 fold increase) during the wet season. Mazama americana was the only species where a significant difference was found in occupancy, with more photos in more cameras during the wet season. For most groups and species variation in the number of photos per camera was only explained weakly by the GLMs (deviance explained ranging from 10.3 to 54.4%). Terrestrial birds (Crax alector, Psophia crepitans and Tinamus major) and rodents (Cuniculus paca, Dasyprocta leporina and M. acouchy) were the notable exceptions, with our GLMs significantly explaining variation in the distribution of all species

  6. Zygomycetes From Herbivore Dung in the Ecological Reserve of Dois IrmÃOs, Northeast Brazil

    PubMed Central

    de Azevedo Santiago, André Luiz Cabral Monteiro; Botelho Trufem, Sandra Farto; Malosso, Elaine; dos Santos, Paulo Jorge Parreira; de Queiroz Cavalcanti, Maria Auxiliadora

    2011-01-01

    Thirty-eight taxa of Zygomycetes distributed in 15 genera were recorded from tapir (Tapirus terrestris), camel (Camelus bactrianus), horse (Equus caballus), deer (Cervus elaphus), agouti (Dasyprocta aguti), donkey (Equus asinus), llama (Llama glama) and waterbuck (Kobus ellipsiprymnus) dung collected at the Reserva Ecológica de Dois Irmãos located in Recife, State of Pernambuco, Northeast Brazil. The samples were collected on a monthly basis from June 2005 to May 2006, taken to the laboratory and incubated in moist chambers. Higher number of taxa was observed in the excrements of tapir, followed by deer and donkey. The highest number of species was detected for Mucor, followed by Pilobolus. Statistical analyses showed significant differences in richness of Zygomycetes taxa between the herbivore dung types. Differences of species composition, however, were weak. Seasonality influenced the Zygomycetes species composition but not its richness. Variations in taxa composition between ruminants and non-ruminants dung were non significant. PMID:24031609

  7. Zygomycetes From Herbivore Dung in the Ecological Reserve of Dois IrmÃOs, Northeast Brazil.

    PubMed

    de Azevedo Santiago, André Luiz Cabral Monteiro; Botelho Trufem, Sandra Farto; Malosso, Elaine; Dos Santos, Paulo Jorge Parreira; de Queiroz Cavalcanti, Maria Auxiliadora

    2011-01-01

    Thirty-eight taxa of Zygomycetes distributed in 15 genera were recorded from tapir (Tapirus terrestris), camel (Camelus bactrianus), horse (Equus caballus), deer (Cervus elaphus), agouti (Dasyprocta aguti), donkey (Equus asinus), llama (Llama glama) and waterbuck (Kobus ellipsiprymnus) dung collected at the Reserva Ecológica de Dois Irmãos located in Recife, State of Pernambuco, Northeast Brazil. The samples were collected on a monthly basis from June 2005 to May 2006, taken to the laboratory and incubated in moist chambers. Higher number of taxa was observed in the excrements of tapir, followed by deer and donkey. The highest number of species was detected for Mucor, followed by Pilobolus. Statistical analyses showed significant differences in richness of Zygomycetes taxa between the herbivore dung types. Differences of species composition, however, were weak. Seasonality influenced the Zygomycetes species composition but not its richness. Variations in taxa composition between ruminants and non-ruminants dung were non significant. PMID:24031609

  8. Compartmentalization of cerebral cortical germinal zones in a lissencephalic primate and gyrencephalic rodent.

    PubMed

    García-Moreno, Fernando; Vasistha, Navneet A; Trevia, Nonata; Bourne, James A; Molnár, Zoltán

    2012-02-01

    Previous studies of macaque and human cortices identified cytoarchitectonically distinct germinal zones; the ventricular zone inner subventricular zone (ISVZ), and outer subventricular zone (OSVZ). To date, the OSVZ has only been described in gyrencephalic brains, separated from the ISVZ by an inner fiber layer and considered a milestone that triggered increased neocortical neurogenesis. However, this observation has only been assessed in a handful of species without the identification of the different progenitor populations. We examined the Amazonian rodent agouti (Dasyprocta agouti) and the marmoset monkey (Callithrix jacchus) to further understand relationships among progenitor compartmentalization, proportions of various cortical progenitors, and degree of cortical folding. We identified a similar cytoarchitectonic distinction between the OSVZ and ISVZ at midgestation in both species. In the marmoset, we quantified the ventricular and abventricular divisions and observed similar proportions as previously described for the human and ferret brains. The proportions of radial glia, intermediate progenitors, and outer radial glial cell (oRG) populations were similar in midgestation lissencephalic marmoset as in gyrencephalic human or ferret. Our findings suggest that cytoarchitectonic subdivisions of SVZ are an evolutionary trend and not a primate specific feature, and a large population of oRG can be seen regardless of cortical folding. PMID:22114081

  9. Scatter Hoarding of Seeds Confers Survival Advantages and Disadvantages to Large-Seeded Tropical Plants at Different Life Stages

    PubMed Central

    Kuprewicz, Erin K.

    2015-01-01

    Scatter hoarding of seeds by animals contributes significantly to forest-level processes, including plant recruitment and forest community composition. However, the potential positive and negative effects of caching on seed survival, germination success, and seedling survival have rarely been assessed through experimental studies. Here, I tested the hypothesis that seed burial mimicking caches made by scatter hoarding Central American agoutis (Dasyprocta punctate) enhances seed survival, germination, and growth by protecting seeds from seed predators and providing favorable microhabitats for germination. In a series of experiments, I used simulated agouti seed caches to assess how hoarding affects seed predation by ground-dwelling invertebrates and vertebrates for four plant species. I tracked germination and seedling growth of intact and beetle-infested seeds and, using exclosures, monitored the effects of mammals on seedling survival through time. All experiments were conducted over three years in a lowland wet forest in Costa Rica. The majority of hoarded palm seeds escaped predation by both invertebrates and vertebrates while exposed seeds suffered high levels of infestation and removal. Hoarding had no effect on infestation rates of D. panamensis, but burial negatively affected germination success by preventing endocarp dehiscence. Non-infested palm seeds had higher germination success and produced larger seedlings than infested seeds. Seedlings of A. alatum and I. deltoidea suffered high mortality by seed-eating mammals. Hoarding protected most seeds from predators and enhanced germination success (except for D. panamensis) and seedling growth, although mammals killed many seedlings of two plant species; all seedling deaths were due to seed removal from the plant base. Using experimental caches, this study shows that scatter hoarding is beneficial to most seeds and may positively affect plant propagation in tropical forests, although tradeoffs in seed

  10. Molecular identification of trypanosomatids in wild animals.

    PubMed

    Tenório, M S; Oliveira e Sousa, L; Alves-Martin, M F; Paixão, M S; Rodrigues, M V; Starke-Buzetti, W A; Araújo Junior, J P; Lucheis, S B

    2014-06-16

    Diverse wild animal species can be reservoirs of zoonotic flagellate parasites, which can cause pathologic Chagas disease. The present study aimed to detect the natural occurrence of flagellate parasites through direct microscopic examination of the parasites in blood samples and through PCR of whole blood and blood culture (haemoculture) samples from 38 captive and 65 free-living wild animals in the Centre for Conservation of Wild Fauna (CCWF), an area endemic for leishmaniasis. For this study, PCR was accomplished using primers for the ribosomal region (ITS-1) of the flagellate parasites. The amplified fragments were cloned and sequenced to identify DNA of the Trypanosomatid parasite species, observed in blood cultures from 3.9% (04/103) of the animals. Through these techniques, Trypanosoma cruzi was identified in haemoculture samples of the following three free-living species: common agouti (Dasyprocta aguti), white-eared opossum (Didelphis albiventris), and nine-banded armadillo (Dasypus novemcinctus). Furthermore, Trypanosoma minasense was identified in whole blood samples from 01 (0.9%) captive animal (black howler monkey-Alouatta caraya). These results demonstrated the first report of T. cruzi isolation in wild species from the CCWF using blood culture, which can be applied in addition to molecular tools for epidemiological studies and to identify trypanosomatids in wild animals. PMID:24636787

  11. Systematic, Cross-Cortex Variation in Neuron Numbers in Rodents and Primates

    PubMed Central

    Charvet, Christine J.; Cahalane, Diarmuid J.; Finlay, Barbara L.

    2015-01-01

    Uniformity, local variability, and systematic variation in neuron numbers per unit of cortical surface area across species and cortical areas have been claimed to characterize the isocortex. Resolving these claims has been difficult, because species, techniques, and cortical areas vary across studies. We present a stereological assessment of neuron numbers in layers II–IV and V–VI per unit of cortical surface area across the isocortex in rodents (hamster, Mesocricetus auratus; agouti, Dasyprocta azarae; paca, Cuniculus paca) and primates (owl monkey, Aotus trivigratus; tamarin, Saguinus midas; capuchin, Cebus apella); these chosen to vary systematically in cortical size. The contributions of species, cortical areas, and techniques (stereology, “isotropic fractionator”) to neuron estimates were assessed. Neurons per unit of cortical surface area increase across the rostro-caudal (RC) axis in primates (varying by a factor of 1.64–2.13 across the rostral and caudal poles) but less in rodents (varying by a factor of 1.15–1.54). Layer II–IV neurons account for most of this variation. When integrated into the context of species variation, and this RC gradient in neuron numbers, conflicts between studies can be accounted for. The RC variation in isocortical neurons in adulthood mirrors the gradients in neurogenesis duration in development. PMID:23960207

  12. Rhizobium grahamii sp. nov., from nodules of Dalea leporina, Leucaena leucocephala and Clitoria ternatea, and Rhizobium mesoamericanum sp. nov., from nodules of Phaseolus vulgaris, siratro, cowpea and Mimosa pudica.

    PubMed

    López-López, Aline; Rogel-Hernández, Marco A; Barois, Isabelle; Ortiz Ceballos, Angel I; Martínez, Julio; Ormeño-Orrillo, Ernesto; Martínez-Romero, Esperanza

    2012-09-01

    Two novel related Rhizobium species, Rhizobium grahamii sp. nov. and Rhizobium mesoamericanum sp. nov., were identified by a polyphasic approach using DNA-DNA hybridization, whole-genome sequencing and phylogenetic and phenotypic characterization including nodulation of Leucaena leucocephala and Phaseolus vulgaris (bean). As similar bacteria were found in the Los Tuxtlas rainforest in Mexico and in Central America, we suggest the existence of a Mesoamerican microbiological corridor. The type strain of Rhizobium grahamii sp. nov. is CCGE 502(T) (= ATCC BAA-2124(T) = CFN 242(T) = Dal4(T) = HAMBI 3152(T)) and that of Rhizobium mesoamericanum sp. nov. is CCGE 501(T) (= ATCC BAA-2123(T) = HAMBI 3151(T) = CIP 110148(T) = 1847(T)). PMID:22081714

  13. [Seasonal evaluation of mammal species richness and abundance in the "Mário Viana" municipal reserve, Mato Grosso, Brasil].

    PubMed

    Rocha, Ednaldo Cândido; Silva, Elias; Martins, Sebastião Venâncio; Barreto, Francisco Cândido Cardoso

    2006-09-01

    We evaluated seasonal species presence and richness, and abundance of medium and large sized mammalian terrestrial fauna in the "Mário Viana" Municipal Biological Reserve, Nova Xavantina, Mato Grosso, Brazil. During 2001, two monthly visits were made to an established transect, 2,820 m in length. Records of 22 mammal species were obtained and individual footprint sequences quantified for seasonal calculation of species richness and relative abundance index (x footprints/km traveled). All 22 species occurred during the rainy season, but only 18 during the dry season. Pseudalopex vetulus (Lund, 1842) (hoary fox), Eira barbara (Linnaeus, 1758) (tayra), Puma concolor (Linnaeus, 1771) (cougar) and Hydrochaeris hydrochaeris (Linnaeus, 1766) (capybara) were only registered during the rainy season. The species diversity estimated using the Jackknife procedure in the dry season (19.83, CI = 2.73) was smaller than in the rainy season (25.67, CI = 3.43). Among the 18 species common in the two seasons, only four presented significantly different abundance indexes: Dasypus novemcinctus Linnaeus, 1758 (nine-banded armadillo), Euphractus sexcinctus (Linnaeus, 1758) (six-banded armadillo), Dasyprocta azarae Lichtenstein, 1823 (Azara's Agouti) and Tapirus terrestris (Linnaeus, 1758) (tapir). On the other hand, Priodontes maximus (Kerr, 1792) (giant armadillo) and Leopardus pardalis (Linnaeus, 1758) (ocelot) had identical abundance index over the two seasons. Distribution of species abundance in the sampled area followed the expected pattern for communities in equilibrium, especially in the rainy season, suggesting that the environment still maintains good characteristics for mammal conservation. The present study shows that the reserve, although only 470 ha in size, plays an important role for conservation of mastofauna of the area as a refuge in an environment full of anthropic influence (mainly cattle breeding in exotic pasture). PMID:18491629

  14. Increased food intake in growth hormone-transgenic common carp (Cyprinus carpio L.) may be mediated by upregulating Agouti-related protein (AgRP).

    PubMed

    Zhong, Chengrong; Song, Yanlong; Wang, Yaping; Zhang, Tanglin; Duan, Ming; Li, Yongming; Liao, Lanjie; Zhu, Zuoyan; Hu, Wei

    2013-10-01

    In fish, food intake and feeding behavior are crucial for survival, competition, growth and reproduction. Growth hormone (GH)-transgenic common carp exhibit an enhanced growth rate, increased food intake and higher feed conversion rate. However, the underlying molecular mechanisms of feeding regulation in GH-transgenic (TG) fish are not clear. In this study, we observed feeding behavior of TG and non-transgenic (NT) common carp, and analyzed the mRNA expression levels of NPY, AgRP I, orexin, POMC, CCK, and CART I in the hypothalamus and telencephalon after behavioral observation. We detected similar gene expression levels in the hypothalamus of TG and NT common carp, which had been cultured in the field at the same age. Furthermore, we tested the effects of GH on hypothalamus fragments in vitro to confirm our findings. We demonstrated that TG common carp displayed increased food intake and reduced food consumption time, which were associated with a marked increase in hypothalamic AgRP I mRNA expression. Our results suggest that elevated GH levels may influence food intake and feeding behavior by upregulating the hypothalamic orexigenic factor AgRP I in GH-transgenic common carp. PMID:23583469

  15. Maternal obesity in the agouti viable yellow (Avy) mouse produces defective secretory activation that is associated with mammary inflammation and activation of adrenocorticosteroid-dependent gene expression

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Maternal obesity is known to interfere with normal lactation in women, rodents, and dairy animals. Obesity is also correlated with profound changes in an array of endocrine factors and is causally linked with inflammation and insulin resistance. Recent work suggests that elevated aldosterone actin...

  16. In Utero exposure to soy protein isolate does not produce epigenetic changes in heterozygous viable yellow agouti (Avy/a) mice offspring, but does alter body composition and prevents hepatosteatosis

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Millions of pregnant women, fetuses and neonates have been exposed to soy foods containing phytoestrogen isoflavones such as genistein and daidzein for generations in Asia and for decades in the USA. Despite this long history, there are concerns about potential adverse developmental effects of soy ...

  17. Exposure to Soy Protein Isolate From Conception Fails to Induce Epigenetic Changes in Viable Yellow Agouti (Avy/a) Mice, But Partially Blocks Hepatosteatosis and Altered Body Composition in Mice and Rats

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Both beneficial and adverse health effects have been attributed to soy food consumption. Epigenetic programming through hypermethlylation of CpG sites on promoter regions may be a potential mechanism. Virgin a/a female and Avy/a male mice were fed AIN-93G diets made with either casein or soy protein...

  18. Genetic Studies of the Mouse Mutations Mahogany and Mahoganoid

    PubMed Central

    Miller, K. A.; Gunn, T. M.; Carrasquillo, M. M.; Lamoreux, M. L.; Galbraith, D. B.; Barsh, G. S.

    1997-01-01

    The mouse mutations mahogany (mg) and mahoganoid (md) are negative modifiers of the Agouti coat color gene, which encodes a paracrine signaling molecule that induces a switch in melanin synthesis from eumelanin to pheomelanin. Animals mutant for md or mg synthesize very little or no pheomelanin depending on Agouti gene background. The Agouti protein is normally expressed in the skin and acts as an antagonist of the melanocyte receptor for α-MSH (Mc1r); however, ectopic expression of Agouti causes obesity, possibly by antagonizing melanocortin receptors expressed in the brain. To investigate where md and mg lie in a genetic pathway with regard to Agouti and Mc1r signaling, we determined the effects of these mutations in animals that carried either a loss-of-function Mc1r mutation (recessive yellow, Mc1r(e)) or a gain-of-function Agouti mutation (lethal yellow, A(y)). We found that the Mc1r(e) mutation suppressed the effects of md and mg, but that md and mg suppressed the effects of A(y) on both coat color and obesity. Plasma levels of α-MSH and of ACTH were unaffected by md or mg. These results suggest that md and mg interfere directly with Agouti signaling, possibly at the level of protein production or receptor regulation. PMID:9258683

  19. A molecular model for the genetic and phenotypic characteristics of the mouse lethal yellow (A{sup y}) mutation

    SciTech Connect

    Michaud, E.J.; Klebig, M.L.; Stubbs, L.J.; Russell, L.B.; Woychik, R.P.; Bultman, S.J. |; Vugt, M.J. van |

    1994-03-29

    Lethal yellow (A{sup y}) is a mutation at the mouse agouti locus in chromosome 2 that causes a number of dominant pleiotropic effects, including a completely yellow coat color, obesity, an insulin-resistant type II diabetic condition, and an increased propensity to develop a variety of spontaneous and induced tumors. Additionally, homozygosity for A{sup y} results in preimplantation lethality, which terminates development by the blastocyst stage. The A{sup y} mutation is the result of a 170-kb deletion that removes all but the promoter and noncoding first exon of another gene called Raly, which lies in the same transcriptional orientation as agouti and maps 280 kb proximal to the 3{prime} end of the agouti gene. The authors present a model for the structure of the A{sub y} allele that can explain the dominant pleiotropic effects associated with this mutation, as well as the recessive lethality, which is unrelated to the agouti gene.

  20. The mouse pink-eyed dilution allele of the P-gene greatly inhibits eumelanin but not pheomelanin synthesis.

    PubMed

    Hirobe, Tomohisa; Ito, Shosuke; Wakamatsu, Kazumasa

    2011-02-01

    The mouse pink-eyed dilution (p) locus is known to control eumelanin synthesis, melanosome morphology, and tyrosinase activity in melanocytes. However, it has not been fully determined whether the mutant allele, p affects pheomelanin synthesis. Effects of the p allele on eumelanin and phemelanin synthesis were investigated by chemical analysis of dorsal hairs of 5-week-old mice obtained from the F(2) generations (black, pink-eyed black, recessive yellow, pink-eyed recessive yellow, agouti, and pink-eyed agouti) between C57BL/10JHir (B10)-congenic pink-eyed black mice (B10-p/p) and recessive yellow (B10-Mc1r(e)/Mc1r(e)) or agouti (B10-A/A) mice. The eumelanin content was dramatically (>20-fold) decreased in pink-eyed black and pink-eyed agouti mice, whereas the pheomelanin content did not decrease in pink-eyed black, pink-eyed recessive yellow, or pink-eyed agouti mice compared to the corresponding P/- mice. These results suggest that the pink-eyed dilution allele greatly inhibits eumelanin synthesis, but not pheomelanin synthesis. PMID:21232027

  1. On The Origin and Spread Of an Adaptive Allele In Deer Mice*

    PubMed Central

    Linnen, Catherine R.; Kingsley, Evan P.; Jensen, Jeffrey D.; Hoekstra, Hopi E.

    2009-01-01

    Adaptation is a central focus of biology, although it can be difficult to identify both the strength and agent of selection and the underlying molecular mechanisms causing change. We studied cryptically colored deer mice living on the Nebraska Sand Hills and show that their light coloration stems from a novel banding pattern on individual hairs produced by an increase in Agouti expression caused by cis-acting mutation(s), which either is, or is closely linked to, a single amino acid deletion in Agouti that appears to be under selection. Furthermore, our data suggest that this derived Agouti allele arose de novo after the formation of the Sand Hills. These findings reveal one means by which genetic, developmental, and evolutionary mechanisms can drive rapid adaptation under ecological pressure. PMID:19713521

  2. The melanocortin system in leukocyte biology.

    PubMed

    Catania, Anna

    2007-02-01

    The melanocortin system is composed of the melanocortin peptides, adrenocorticotropic hormone and alpha-, beta-, and gamma-melanocyte-stimulating hormone, the melanocortin receptors (MCRs), and the endogenous antagonists agouti- and agouti-related protein. Melanocortin peptides exert multiple effects upon the host, including anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory effects. Leukocytes are a source of melanocortins and a major target for these peptides. Because of reduced translocation of the nuclear factor NF-kappaB to the nucleus, MCR activation by their ligands causes a collective reduction of the most important molecules involved in the inflammatory process. This review examines how melanocortin peptides and their receptors participate in leukocyte biology. PMID:17041004

  3. Apolipoprotein A-IV inhibits AgRP/NPY neurons and activates POMC neurons in the arcuate nucleus

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Apolipoprotein A-IV (apoA-IV) in the brain potently suppresses food intake. However the mechanisms underlying its anorexigenic effects remain to be identified. We first examined the effects of apoA-IV on cellular activities in hypothalamic neurons that co-express agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and ne...

  4. Regulation and Role of Leptin: Pigs

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Recent findings demonstrate that numerous genes i.e., relaxin, interleukins and other cytokines and biologically active substances such as leptin, insulin- like growth factor-I (IGF-I), and Agouti protein are produced by porcine adipose tissue, which could have a profound effect on appetite, immune...

  5. MATERNAL DIETARY METHYL DONOR SUPPLEMENTATION OF "AXIN(FU)/+" MICE PREVENTS TAIL KINKS BY TAIL-SPECIFIC CPG HYPERMETHYLATION AT "AXIN(FU)"

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Methyl donor supplementation of the maternal diet alters coat color phenotype of viable yellow agouti "(A[vy]/a)" offspring by a locus-specific increase in CpG methylation. To test the hypothesis that metastable epialleles such as "A[vy]" are, in general, susceptible to early nutritional influences...

  6. Thieving rodents as substitute dispersers of megafaunal seeds

    PubMed Central

    Jansen, Patrick A.; Hirsch, Ben T.; Emsens, Willem-Jan; Zamora-Gutierrez, Veronica; Wikelski, Martin; Kays, Roland

    2012-01-01

    The Neotropics have many plant species that seem to be adapted for seed dispersal by megafauna that went extinct in the late Pleistocene. Given the crucial importance of seed dispersal for plant persistence, it remains a mystery how these plants have survived more than 10,000 y without their mutualist dispersers. Here we present support for the hypothesis that secondary seed dispersal by scatter-hoarding rodents has facilitated the persistence of these large-seeded species. We used miniature radio transmitters to track the dispersal of reputedly megafaunal seeds by Central American agoutis, which scatter-hoard seeds in shallow caches in the soil throughout the forest. We found that seeds were initially cached at mostly short distances and then quickly dug up again. However, rather than eating the recovered seeds, agoutis continued to move and recache the seeds, up to 36 times. Agoutis dispersed an estimated 35% of seeds for >100 m. An estimated 14% of the cached seeds survived to the next year, when a new fruit crop became available to the rodents. Serial video-monitoring of cached seeds revealed that the stepwise dispersal was caused by agoutis repeatedly stealing and recaching each other’s buried seeds. Although previous studies suggest that rodents are poor dispersers, we demonstrate that communities of rodents can in fact provide highly effective long-distance seed dispersal. Our findings suggest that thieving scatter-hoarding rodents could substitute for extinct megafaunal seed dispersers of tropical large-seeded trees. PMID:22802644

  7. Adaptive Variation in Beach Mice Produced by Two Interacting Pigmentation Genes

    PubMed Central

    Steiner, Cynthia C; Weber, Jesse N; Hoekstra, Hopi E

    2007-01-01

    Little is known about the genetic basis of ecologically important morphological variation such as the diverse color patterns of mammals. Here we identify genetic changes contributing to an adaptive difference in color pattern between two subspecies of oldfield mice (Peromyscus polionotus). One mainland subspecies has a cryptic dark brown dorsal coat, while a younger beach-dwelling subspecies has a lighter coat produced by natural selection for camouflage on pale coastal sand dunes. Using genome-wide linkage mapping, we identified three chromosomal regions (two of major and one of minor effect) associated with differences in pigmentation traits. Two candidate genes, the melanocortin-1 receptor (Mc1r) and its antagonist, the Agouti signaling protein (Agouti), map to independent regions that together are responsible for most of the difference in pigmentation between subspecies. A derived mutation in the coding region of Mc1r, rather than change in its expression level, contributes to light pigmentation. Conversely, beach mice have a derived increase in Agouti mRNA expression but no changes in protein sequence. These two genes also interact epistatically: the phenotypic effects of Mc1r are visible only in genetic backgrounds containing the derived Agouti allele. These results demonstrate that cryptic coloration can be based largely on a few interacting genes of major effect. PMID:17696646

  8. Soy protein isolate reduces hepatosteatosis in yellow Avy/a mice without altering coat color phenotype

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agouti (Avy/a) mice fed an AIN-93G diet containing the soy isoflavone genistein (GEN) prior to and during pregnancy were reported to shift coat color and body composition phenotypes from obese-yellow towards lean pseudoagouti, suggesting epigenetic programming. Human consumption of purified GEN is r...

  9. The mouse ruby-eye 2(d) (ru2(d) /Hps5(ru2-d) ) allele inhibits eumelanin but not pheomelanin synthesis.

    PubMed

    Hirobe, Tomohisa; Ito, Shosuke; Wakamatsu, Kazumasa

    2013-09-01

    The novel mutation named ru2(d) /Hps5(ru2-d) , characterized by light-colored coats and ruby-eyes, prohibits differentiation of melanocytes by inhibiting tyrosinase (Tyr) activity, expression of Tyr, Tyr-related protein 1 (Tyrp1), Tyrp2, and Kit. However, it is not known whether the ru2(d) allele affects pheomelanin synthesis in recessive yellow (e/Mc1r(e) ) or in pheomelanic stage in agouti (A) mice. In this study, effects of the ru2(d) allele on pheomelanin synthesis were investigated by chemical analysis of melanin present in dorsal hairs of 5-week-old mice from F2 generation between C57BL/10JHir (B10)-co-isogenic ruby-eye 2(d) and B10-congenic recessive yellow or agouti. Eumelanin content was decreased in ruby-eye 2(d) and ruby-eye 2(d) agouti mice, whereas pheomelanin content in ruby-eye 2(d) recessive yellow and ruby-eye 2(d) agouti mice did not differ from the corresponding Ru2(d) /- mice, suggesting that the ru2(d) allele inhibits eumelanin but not pheomelanin synthesis. PMID:23672590

  10. Arborescent palm seed morphology and seedling distribution.

    PubMed

    Salm, Rodolfo

    2005-11-01

    This study examines how the seed morphology of two large arborescent palms, Attalea maripa (Aubl.) Mart. and Astrocaryum aculeatum G. Mey, may affect their seed shadow in a seasonally dry Amazonian forest. In addition to being smaller and produced in larger numbers than those of A. aculeatum, A. maripa seeds also presented a substantially lower amount of nutritional reserves available for the embryo. However, A. maripa seedlings were found in much higher numbers than those of A. aculeatum. The results suggest that, within the spatial scale considered, the seed rain of A. maripa is more restricted to the area surrounding around reproductive conspecifics than that of A. aculeatum. Furthermore, in comparison with those of A. aculeatum, the smaller seeds of A. maripa might be less attractive to scatterhoarding rodents (e.g. Dasyprocta aguti). The pattern observed emphasizes the importance of scatterhoarding rodents as dispersers of large-seeded plant species in Neotropical forests. PMID:16532195

  11. Tail suspension increases energy expenditure independently of the melanocortin system in mice.

    PubMed

    Lew, Pei San; Wong, Davie; Yamaguchi, Takafumi; Leckstrom, Arnold; Schwartz, Jacquie; Dodd, Janice G; Mizuno, Tooru M

    2009-10-01

    Space travelers experience anorexia and body weight loss in a microgravity environment, and microgravity-like situations cause changes in hypothalamic activity. Hypothalamic melanocortins play a critical role in the regulation of metabolism. Therefore, we hypothesized that microgravity affects metabolism through alterations in specific hypothalamic signaling pathways, including melanocortin signaling. To address this hypothesis, the microgravity-like situation was produced by an antiorthostatic tail suspension in wild-type and agouti mice, and the effect of tail suspension on energy expenditure and hypothalamic gene expression was examined. Energy expenditure was measured using indirect calorimetry before and during the tail suspension protocol. Hypothalamic tissues were collected for gene expression analysis at the end of the 3 h tail suspension period. Tail suspension significantly increased oxygen consumption, carbon dioxide production, and heat production in wild-type mice. Tail suspension-induced increases in energy expenditure were not attenuated in agouti mice. Although tail suspension did not alter hypothalamic proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and agouti-related protein (AGRP) mRNA levels, it significantly increased hypothalamic interleukin 6 (Il-6) mRNA levels. These data are consistent with the hypothesis that microgravity increases energy expenditure and suggest that these effects are mediated through hypothalamic signaling pathways that are independent of melanocortins, but possibly used by Il-6. PMID:20052010

  12. Agent-based modeling for the landuse change of hunter-gather societies and the impacts on biodiversity in Guyana

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Iwamura, T.; Fragoso, J.; Lambin, E.

    2012-12-01

    The interactions with animals are vital to the Amerindian, indigenous people, of Rupunini savannah-forest in Guyana. Their connections extend from basic energy and protein resource to spiritual bonding through "paring" to a certain animal in the forest. We collected extensive dataset of 23 indigenous communities for 3.5 years, consisting 9900 individuals from 1307 households, as well as animal observation data in 8 transects per communities (47,000 data entries). In this presentation, our research interest is to model the driver of land use change of the indigenous communities and its impacts on the ecosystem in the Rupunini area under global change. Overarching question we would like to answer with this program is to find how and why "tipping-point" from hunting gathering society to the agricultural society occurs in the future. Secondary question is what is the implication of the change to agricultural society in terms of biodiversity and carbon stock in the area, and eventually the well-being of Rupunini people. To answer the questions regarding the society shift in agriculture activities, we built as simulation with Agent-Based Modeling (Multi Agents Simulation). We developed this simulation by using Netlogo, the programming environment specialized for spatially explicit agent-based modeling (ABM). This simulation consists of four different process in the Rupunini landscape; forest succession, animal population growth, hunting of animals, and land clearing for agriculture. All of these processes are carried out by a set of computational unit, called "agents". In this program, there are four types of agents - patches, villages, households, and animals. Here, we describe the impacts of hunting on the biodiversity based on actual demographic data from one village named Crush Water. Animal population within the hunting territory of the village stabilized but Agouti/Paca dominates the landscape with little population of armadillos and peccaries. White-tailed deers

  13. Characterization of Rhizobium grahamii extrachromosomal replicons and their transfer among rhizobia

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Rhizobium grahamii belongs to a new phylogenetic group of rhizobia together with Rhizobium mesoamericanum and other species. R. grahamii has a broad-host-range that includes Leucaena leucocephala and Phaseolus vulgaris, although it is a poor competitor for P. vulgaris nodulation in the presence of Rhizobium etli or Rhizobium phaseoli strains. This work analyzed the genome sequence and transfer properties of R. grahamii plasmids. Results Genome sequence was obtained from R. grahamii CCGE502 type strain isolated from Dalea leporina in Mexico. The CCGE502 genome comprises one chromosome and two extrachromosomal replicons (ERs), pRgrCCGE502a and pRgrCCGE502b. Additionally, a plasmid integrated in the CCGE502 chromosome was found. The genomic comparison of ERs from this group showed that gene content is more variable than average nucleotide identity (ANI). Well conserved nod and nif genes were found in R. grahamii and R. mesoamericanum with some differences. R. phaseoli Ch24-10 genes expressed in bacterial cells in roots were found to be conserved in pRgrCCGE502b. Regarding conjugative transfer we were unable to transfer the R. grahamii CCGE502 symbiotic plasmid and its megaplasmid to other rhizobial hosts but we could transfer the symbiotic plasmid to Agrobacterium tumefaciens with transfer dependent on homoserine lactones. Conclusion Variable degrees of nucleotide identity and gene content conservation were found among the different R. grahamii CCGE502 replicons in comparison to R. mesoamericanum genomes. The extrachromosomal replicons from R. grahamii were more similar to those found in phylogenetically related Rhizobium species. However, limited similarities of R. grahamii CCGE502 symbiotic plasmid and megaplasmid were observed in other more distant Rhizobium species. The set of conserved genes in R. grahamii comprises some of those that are highly expressed in R. phaseoli on plant roots, suggesting that they play an important role in root colonization

  14. A monograph of Otidea (Pyronemataceae, Pezizomycetes).

    PubMed

    Olariaga, I; Van Vooren, N; Carbone, M; Hansen, K

    2015-12-01

    The easily recognised genus Otidea is subjected to numerous problems in species identification. A number of old names have undergone various interpretations, materials from different continents have not been compared and misidentifications occur commonly. In this context, Otidea is monographed, based on our multiple gene phylogenies assessing species boundaries and comparative morphological characters (see Hansen & Olariaga 2015). All names combined in or synonymised with Otidea are dealt with. Thirty-three species are treated, with full descriptions and colour illustrations provided for 25 of these. Five new species are described, viz. O. borealis, O. brunneoparva, O. oregonensis, O. pseudoleporina and O. subformicarum. Otidea cantharella var. minor and O. onotica var. brevispora are elevated to species rank. Otideopsis kaushalii is combined in the genus Otidea. A key to the species of Otidea is given. An LSU dataset containing 167 sequences (with 44 newly generated in this study) is analysed to place collections and determine whether the named Otidea sequences in GenBank were identified correctly. Fourty-nine new ITS sequences were generated in this study. The ITS region is too variable to align across Otidea, but had low intraspecific variation and it aided in species identifications. Thirty type collections were studied, and ITS and LSU sequences are provided for 12 of these. A neotype is designated for O. cantharella and epitypes for O. concinna, O. leporina and O. onotica, along with several lectotypifications. The apothecial colour and shape, and spore characters are important for species identification. We conclude that to distinguish closely related or morphologically similar species, a combination of additional features are needed, i.e. the shape of the paraphyses, ectal excipulum structure, types of ectal excipulum resinous exudates and their reactions in Melzer's reagent and KOH, tomentum and basal mycelium colours and exudates. The KOH reaction of

  15. Comprehensive Assessment of Oxidatively Induced Modifications of DNA in a Rat Model of Human Wilson's Disease.

    PubMed

    Yu, Yang; Guerrero, Candace R; Liu, Shuo; Amato, Nicholas J; Sharma, Yogeshwar; Gupta, Sanjeev; Wang, Yinsheng

    2016-03-01

    Defective copper excretion from hepatocytes in Wilson's disease causes accumulation of copper ions with increased generation of reactive oxygen species via the Fenton-type reaction. Here we developed a nanoflow liquid chromatography-nanoelectrospray ionization-tandem mass spectrometry coupled with the isotope-dilution method for the simultaneous quantification of oxidatively induced DNA modifications. This method enabled measurement, in microgram quantities of DNA, of four oxidative stress-induced lesions, including direct ROS-induced purine cyclonucleosides (cPus) and two exocyclic adducts induced by byproducts of lipid peroxidation, i.e. 1,N(6)-etheno-2'-deoxyadenosine (εdA) and 1,N(2)-etheno-2'-deoxyguanosine (εdG). Analysis of liver tissues of Long-Evans Cinnamon rats, which constitute an animal model of human Wilson's disease, and their healthy counterparts [i.e. Long-Evans Agouti rats] showed significantly higher levels of all four DNA lesions in Long-Evans Cinnamon than Long-Evans Agouti rats. Moreover, cPus were present at much higher levels than εdA and εdG lesions. In contrast, the level of 5-hydroxymethyl-2'-deoxycytidine (5-HmdC), an oxidation product of 5-methyl-2'-deoxycytidine (5-mdC), was markedly lower in the liver tissues of Long-Evans Cinnamon than Long-Evans Agouti rats, though no differences were observed for the levels of 5-mdC. In vitro biochemical assay showed that Cu(2+) ions could directly inhibit the activity of Tet enzymes. Together, these results suggest that aberrant copper accumulation may perturb genomic stability by elevating oxidatively induced DNA lesions, and by altering epigenetic pathways of gene regulation. PMID:26362317

  16. Astrocyte Leptin Receptor (ObR) and Leptin Transport in Adult-Onset Obese Mice

    PubMed Central

    Pan, Weihong; Hsuchou, Hung; He, Yi; Sakharkar, Amul; Cain, Courtney; Yu, Chuanhui; Kastin, Abba J.

    2008-01-01

    The agouti viable yellow (Avy) spontaneous mutation generates an unusual mouse phenotype of agouti-colored coat and adult-onset obesity with metabolic syndrome. Persistent production of agouti signaling protein in Avy mice antagonizes melanocortin receptors in the hypothalamus. To determine how this disruption of neuroendocrine circuits affects leptin transport across the blood-brain barrier (BBB), we measured leptin influx in Avy and B6 control mice after the development of obesity, hyperleptinemia, and increased adiposity. After iv bolus injection, 125I-leptin crossed the BBB significantly faster in young (2 month old) B6 mice than in young Avy mice or in older (8 month old) mice of either strain. This difference was not observed by in situ brain perfusion studies, indicating the cause being circulating factors, such as elevated leptin levels or soluble receptors. Thus, Avy mice showed peripheral leptin resistance. ObRa, the main transporting receptor for leptin at the BBB, showed no change in mRNA expression in the cerebral microvessels between the age-matched (2 month old) Avy and B6 mice. Higher ObRb mRNA was seen in the Avy microvasculature with unknown significance. Immunofluorescent staining unexpectedly revealed that many of the ObR(+) cells were astrocytes and that the Avy mice showed significantly more ObR(+) astrocytes in the hypothalamus than the B6 mice. Although leptin permeation from the circulation was slower in the Avy mice, the increased ObR expression in astrocytes and increased ObRb mRNA in microvessels suggest the possibility of heightened central nervous system sensitivity to circulating leptin. PMID:18292187

  17. Platinum coat color locus in the deer mouse.

    PubMed

    Dodson, K M; Dawson, W D; Van Ooteghem, S O; Cushing, B S; Haigh, G R

    1987-01-01

    Platinum coat color in the deer mouse, Peromyscus maniculatus, is an autosomal recessive trait marking a locus, pt, distinct from silver (si), albino (c), blonde (bl), brown (b), and agouti (a). Platinum deer mice are conspicuously pale, with light ears and tail stripe. The pewter trait is allelic with and phenotypically identical to platinum, and represents an independent recurrence of this mutant. The rate of recoveries of coat color mutations from wild deer mice is consistent with available data for recurring mutation rates balanced by strong selection against the recessive phenotype. PMID:3611714

  18. The Use of Mouse Models to Study Epigenetics

    PubMed Central

    Blewitt, Marnie; Whitelaw, Emma

    2013-01-01

    Much of what we know about the role of epigenetics in the determination of phenotype has come from studies of inbred mice. Some unusual expression patterns arising from endogenous and transgenic murine alleles, such as the Agouti coat color alleles, have allowed the study of variegation, variable expressivity, transgenerational epigenetic inheritance, parent-of-origin effects, and position effects. These phenomena have taught us much about gene silencing and the probabilistic nature of epigenetic processes. Based on some of these alleles, large-scale mutagenesis screens have broadened our knowledge of epigenetic control by identifying and characterizing novel genes involved in these processes. PMID:24186070

  19. Adjuvant oils induce arthritis in the DA rat. I. Characterization of the disease and evidence for an immunological involvement.

    PubMed

    Kleinau, S; Erlandsson, H; Holmdahl, R; Klareskog, L

    1991-12-01

    An intradermal injection of Freund's incomplete adjuvant oil (FIA) without further additives was shown to induce erosive polyarthritis in dark Agouti (DA) rats, but not in Lewis rats. Histological examination revealed joint inflammation, first with polymorphonuclear cells and synovial hyperplasia, and subsequently, with multinucleated giant cells. Both constituents of FIA, mineral oil and Arlacel A, as well as Pristane oil were arthritogenic, whereas vegetable oil were not. Re-administration of adjuvant oil after recovery failed to induce arthritis, thus making possible a role of specific immunity in this new form of arthritis in rats. PMID:1812893

  20. Hunting and use of terrestrial fauna used by Caiçaras from the Atlantic Forest coast (Brazil)

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Background The Brazilian Atlantic Forest is considered one of the hotspots for conservation, comprising remnants of rain forest along the eastern Brazilian coast. Its native inhabitants in the Southeastern coast include the Caiçaras (descendants from Amerindians and European colonizers), with a deep knowledge on the natural resources used for their livelihood. Methods We studied the use of the terrestrial fauna in three Caiçara communities, through open-ended interviews with 116 native residents. Data were checked through systematic observations and collection of zoological material. Results The dependence on the terrestrial fauna by Caiçaras is especially for food and medicine. The main species used are Didelphis spp., Dasyprocta azarae, Dasypus novemcinctus, and small birds (several species of Turdidae). Contrasting with a high dependency on terrestrial fauna resources by native Amazonians, the Caiçaras do not show a constant dependency on these resources. Nevertheless, the occasional hunting of native animals represents a complimentary source of animal protein. Conclusion Indigenous or local knowledge on native resources is important in order to promote local development in a sustainable way, and can help to conserve biodiversity, particularly if the resource is sporadically used and not commercially exploited. PMID:19930595

  1. Behavioral and color variations between rat lines developed for differential alcohol sensitivity.

    PubMed

    Sinclair, J D; Viitamaa, T; Hyytiä, P

    1987-01-01

    The AT and ANT rat lines, outbred for differential sensitivity to ethanol-induced motor impairment, also show a difference in their sober behavior. It is not manifested in an escapable-shock test or an amphetamine-stress test, but is shown as significantly more activity by the alcohol-insensitive ATs in a low-stress (33 degrees C) modification of the forced-swimming test. The correlation between alcohol sensitivity and swimming-test activity is, however, not significant in unselected Long Evans rats. Differences in coat color have also developed in the AT and ANT lines; it was possible to estimate whether these changes are independent of ethanol sensitivity with computer simulations. They showed, for example, that the probability of the observed loss of the agouti color in the ATs being by chance is about 0.53 and the probability is nearly 0.50 for there being a spurious line difference, i.e., unrelated to ethanol sensitivity, in which only line had lost the agouti allele. More generally, these and other simulations showed that permanently maintaining selected lines is not the optimal method for finding genetically-based factors related to ethanol sensitivity or other characteristics for which lines have been developed. Nor is either revitalization or replicate lines optimal. The best method apparently would be perpetual restarting of lines. PMID:3426714

  2. Monitoring the status and trends of tropical forest terrestrial vertebrate communities from camera trap data: a tool for conservation.

    PubMed

    Ahumada, Jorge A; Hurtado, Johanna; Lizcano, Diego

    2013-01-01

    Reducing the loss of biodiversity is key to ensure the future well being of the planet. Indicators to measure the state of biodiversity should come from primary data that are collected using consistent field methods across several sites, longitudinal, and derived using sound statistical methods that correct for observation/detection bias. In this paper we analyze camera trap data collected between 2008 and 2012 at a site in Costa Rica (Volcan Barva transect) as part of an ongoing tropical forest global monitoring network (Tropical Ecology Assessment and Monitoring Network). We estimated occupancy dynamics for 13 species of mammals, using a hierarchical modeling approach. We calculated detection-corrected species richness and the Wildlife Picture Index, a promising new indicator derived from camera trap data that measures changes in biodiversity from the occupancy estimates of individual species. Our results show that 3 out of 13 species showed significant declines in occupancy over 5 years (lowland paca, Central American agouti, nine-banded armadillo). We hypothesize that hunting, competition and/or increased predation for paca and agouti might explain these patterns. Species richness and the Wildlife Picture Index are relatively stable at the site, but small herbivores that are hunted showed a decline in diversity of about 25%. We demonstrate the usefulness of longitudinal camera trap deployments coupled with modern statistical methods and advocate for the use of this approach in monitoring and developing global and national indicators for biodiversity change. PMID:24023898

  3. Monitoring the Status and Trends of Tropical Forest Terrestrial Vertebrate Communities from Camera Trap Data: A Tool for Conservation

    PubMed Central

    Ahumada, Jorge A.; Hurtado, Johanna; Lizcano, Diego

    2013-01-01

    Reducing the loss of biodiversity is key to ensure the future well being of the planet. Indicators to measure the state of biodiversity should come from primary data that are collected using consistent field methods across several sites, longitudinal, and derived using sound statistical methods that correct for observation/detection bias. In this paper we analyze camera trap data collected between 2008 and 2012 at a site in Costa Rica (Volcan Barva transect) as part of an ongoing tropical forest global monitoring network (Tropical Ecology Assessment and Monitoring Network). We estimated occupancy dynamics for 13 species of mammals, using a hierarchical modeling approach. We calculated detection-corrected species richness and the Wildlife Picture Index, a promising new indicator derived from camera trap data that measures changes in biodiversity from the occupancy estimates of individual species. Our results show that 3 out of 13 species showed significant declines in occupancy over 5 years (lowland paca, Central American agouti, nine-banded armadillo). We hypothesize that hunting, competition and/or increased predation for paca and agouti might explain these patterns. Species richness and the Wildlife Picture Index are relatively stable at the site, but small herbivores that are hunted showed a decline in diversity of about 25%. We demonstrate the usefulness of longitudinal camera trap deployments coupled with modern statistical methods and advocate for the use of this approach in monitoring and developing global and national indicators for biodiversity change. PMID:24023898

  4. A gene duplication affecting expression of the ovine ASIP gene is responsible for white and black sheep

    PubMed Central

    Norris, Belinda J.; Whan, Vicki A.

    2008-01-01

    Agouti signaling protein (ASIP) functions to regulate pigmentation in mice, while its role in many other animals and in humans has not been fully determined. In this study, we identify a 190-kb tandem duplication encompassing the ovine ASIP and AHCY coding regions and the ITCH promoter region as the genetic cause of white coat color of dominant white/tan (AWt) agouti sheep. The duplication 5′ breakpoint is located upstream of the ASIP coding sequence. Ubiquitous expression of a second copy of the ASIP coding sequence regulated by a duplicated copy of the nearby ITCH promoter causes the white sheep phenotype. A single copy ASIP gene with a silenced ASIP promoter occurs in recessive black sheep. In contrast, a single copy functional wild-type (A+) ASIP is responsible for the ancient Barbary sheep coat color phenotype. The gene duplication was facilitated by homologous recombination between two non-LTR SINE sequences flanking the duplicated segment. This is the first sheep trait attributable to gene duplication and shows nonallelic homologous recombination and gene conversion events at the ovine ASIP locus could have an important role in the evolution of sheep pigmentation. PMID:18493018

  5. Behind melanocortin antagonist overexpression in the zebrafish brain: A behavioral and transcriptomic approach.

    PubMed

    Guillot, Raúl; Cortés, Raúl; Navarro, Sandra; Mischitelli, Morena; García-Herranz, Víctor; Sánchez, Elisa; Cal, Laura; Navarro, Juan Carlos; Míguez, Jesús M; Afanasyev, Sergey; Krasnov, Aleksei; Cone, Roger D; Rotllant, Josep; Cerdá-Reverter, Jose Miguel

    2016-06-01

    Melanocortin signaling is regulated by the binding of naturally occurring antagonists, agouti-signaling protein (ASIP) and agouti-related protein (AGRP) that compete with melanocortin peptides by binding to melanocortin receptors to regulate energy balance and growth. Using a transgenic model overexpressing ASIP, we studied the involvement of melanocortin system in the feeding behaviour, growth and stress response of zebrafish. Our data demonstrate that ASIP overexpression results in enhanced growth but not obesity. The differential growth is explained by increased food intake and feeding efficiency mediated by a differential sensitivity of the satiety system that seems to involve the cocaine- and amphetamine- related transcript (CART). Stress response was similar in both genotypes. Brain transcriptome of transgenic (ASIP) vs wild type (WT) fish was compared using microarrays. WT females and males exhibited 255 genes differentially expressed (DEG) but this difference was reduced to 31 after ASIP overexpression. Statistical analysis revealed 1122 DEG when considering only fish genotype but 1066 and 981 DEG when comparing ASIP males or females with their WT counterparts, respectively. Interaction between genotype and sex significantly affected the expression of 97 genes. Several neuronal systems involved in the control of food intake were identified which displayed a differential expression according to the genotype of the fish that unravelling the flow of melanocortinergic information through the central pathways that controls the energy balance. The information provided herein will help to elucidate new central systems involved in control of obesity and should be of invaluable use for sustaining fish production systems. PMID:27156808

  6. Molecular and Functional Analysis of Human β-Defensin 3 Action at Melanocortin Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Nix, Matthew A.; Kaelin, Christopher B.; Ta, Tina; Weis, Allison; Morton, Gregory J.; Barsh, Gregory S.; Millhauser, Glenn L.

    2013-01-01

    Summary The β-defensins are a class of small, cationic proteins first recognized as antimicrobial components of the innate and adaptive immune system. More recently, one of the major β-defensins produced in skin, β-defensin 3, has been discovered to function as a melanocortin receptor ligand in vivo and in vitro, but its biophysical and pharmacological basis of action has been enigmatic. Here we report functional and biochemical studies focused on human β-defensin 3 (HBD3) and melanocortin receptors 1 and 4. Genetic and pharmacologic studies indicate that HBD3 acts as a neutral melanocortin receptor antagonist, capable of blocking the action of either stimulatory agonists, such as α-melanocyte stimulating hormone, or inhibitory inverse agonists such as Agouti signaling protein (Asip) and Agouti-related protein (Agrp). A comprehensive structure-function analysis demonstrates that two patches of positively charged residues, located on opposite poles of HBD3 and spatially organized by the compact β-defensin fold, are primarily responsible for high affinity binding to melanocortin receptors. These findings identify a distinct mode of melanocortin receptor-ligand interactions based primarily on electrostatic complementarity, with implications for designing ligands that target melanocortin and potentially other seven transmembrane receptors. PMID:23790489

  7. Natural Genetic Variation Underlying Differences in Peromyscus Repetitive & Social/Aggressive Behaviors

    PubMed Central

    Shorter, Kimberly R.; Owen, Amy; Anderson, Vanessa; Hall-South, April C.; Hayford, Samantha; Cakora, Patricia; Crossland, Janet P.; Georgi, Velina R. M.; Perkins, Amy; Kelly, Sandra J.; Felder, Michael R.; Vrana, Paul B.

    2014-01-01

    Peromyscus maniculatus (BW) and P. polionotus (PO) are interfertile North American species that differ in many characteristics. For example, PO exhibit monogamy and BW animals are susceptible to repetitive behaviors and thus a model for neurobehavioral disorders such as Autism. We analyzed these two stocks as well as their hybrids, a BW YPO consomic line (previously shown to alter glucose homeostasis) and a natural P. maniculatus agouti variant (ANb = wide band agouti). We show that PO animals engage in far less repetitive behavior than BW animals, that this trait is dominant, and that trait distribution in both species is bi-modal. The ANb allele also reduces such behaviors, particularly in females. PO, F1, and ANb animals all dig significantly more than BW. Increased self-grooming is also a PO dominant trait, and there is a bimodal trait distribution in all groups except BW. The inter-stock differences in self-grooming are greater between males, and the consomic data suggest the Y chromosome plays a role. The monogamous PO animals engage in more social behavior than BW; hybrid animals exhibit intermediate levels. Surprisingly, ANb animals are also more social than BW animals, although ANb interactions led to aggressive interactions at higher levels than any other group. PO animals exhibited the lowest incidence of aggressive behaviors, while the hybrids exhibited BW levels. Thus this group exhibits natural, genetically tractable variation in several biomedically relevant traits. PMID:24407381

  8. Polyspecific associations between squirrel monkeys (Saimiri sciureus) and other primates in eastern Amazonia.

    PubMed

    Pinheiro, Tatyana; Ferrari, Stephen F; Lopes, Maria Aparecida

    2011-11-01

    One of the most common types of polyspecific association observed in Neotropical primate communities is that between squirrel monkeys (Saimiri) and capuchins (Cebus). The present study focused on association patterns in two Saimiri sciureus groups in eastern Brazilian Amazonia, between March and October, 2009. The associations were analyzed in terms of the species involved, the degree of association, and niche breadth and overlap. The study involved two S. sciureus groups (B4 and GI) on the right and left bank of the Tocantins River, respectively, within the area of the Tucuruí reservoir in southeastern Pará. Relations between species were classified as associations (individuals within 50 m and moving in the same direction), and encounters (individuals within 50 m and no coordinated movement). Group B4 was in association with Cebus apella during 100% of monitoring, and with Chiropotes satanas in 20.2%. By contrast, Group GI associated with Cebus 54.8% of the time, and with Chiropotes utahickae 2.5%. Encounters with Alouatta belzebul and Saguinus niger were recorded at both sites, with Aotus azarae and Dasyprocta prymnolopha at B4, and with Callicebus moloch, Dasyproct aleporina, Mazama gouazoubira, and Nasua nasua at GI. Overall, Saimiri had a broader niche than Cebus in terms of vertical spacing and diet, but not for substrate use. This pattern did not appear to be affected by association. While group GI spent significantly (P < 0.05) more time in association with Cebus during the wet season, group B4 associated with Chiropotes more during the dry season. Despite the higher association rates, niche overlap was greater for all variables at B4. This may reflect differences in the ranging and foraging patterns at the two sites, and the varying potential benefits of association for Saimiri. PMID:21809365

  9. Leptin signaling in GFAP-expressing adult glia cells regulates hypothalamic neuronal circuits and feeding

    PubMed Central

    Kim1, Jae Geun; Suyama, Shigetomo; Koch, Marco; Jin, Sungho; Argente-Arizon, Pilar; Argente, Jesus; Liu, Zhong-Wu; Zimmer, Marcelo R.; Jeong, Jin Kwon; Szigeti-Buck, Klara; Gao, Yuanqing; Garcia-Caceres, Cristina; Yi, Chun-Xia; Salmaso, Natalina; Vaccarino, Flora M.; Chowen, Julie; Diano, Sabrina; Dietrich, Marcelo O; Tschöp, Matthias H.; Horvath, Tamas L.

    2014-01-01

    We have shown that synaptic re-organization of hypothalamic feeding circuits in response to metabolic shifts involves astrocytes, cells that can directly respond to the metabolic hormone, leptin, in vitro. It is not known whether the role of glia cells in hypothalamic synaptic adaptions is active or passive. Here we show that leptin receptors are expressed in hypothalamic astrocytes and that conditional, adult deletion of leptin receptors in astrocytes leads to altered glial morphology, decreased glial coverage and elevated synaptic inputs onto pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC)- and Agouti-related protein (AgRP)-producing neurons. Leptin-induced suppression of feeding was diminished, while rebound feeding after fasting or ghrelin administration was elevated in mice with astrocyte-specific leptin receptor deficiency. These data unmask an active role of glial cells in the initiation of hypothalamic synaptic plasticity and neuroendocrine control of feeding by leptin. PMID:24880214

  10. GPR17 gene disruption does not alter food intake or glucose homeostasis in mice

    PubMed Central

    Mastaitis, Jason; Min, Soo; Elvert, Ralf; Kannt, Aimo; Xin, Yurong; Ochoa, Francisca; Gale, Nicholas W.; Valenzuela, David M.; Murphy, Andrew J.; Yancopoulos, George D.; Gromada, Jesper

    2015-01-01

    G protein-coupled receptor 17 (GPR17) was recently reported to be a Foxo1 target in agouti-related peptide (AGRP) neurons. Intracerebroventricular injection of GPR17 agonists induced food intake, whereas administration of an antagonist to the receptor reduced feeding. These data lead to the conclusion that pharmacological modulation of GPR17 has therapeutic potential to treat obesity. Here we report that mice deficient in Gpr17 (Gpr17−/−) have similar food intake and body weight compared with their wild-type littermates. Gpr17−/− mice have normal hypothalamic Agrp mRNA expression, AGRP plasma levels, and metabolic rate. GPR17 deficiency in mice did not affect glucose homeostasis or prevent fat-induced insulin resistance. These data do not support a role for GPR17 in the control of food intake, body weight, or glycemic control. PMID:25624481

  11. Tyrosinase Depletion Prevents the Maturation of Melanosomes in the Mouse Hair Follicle

    PubMed Central

    Paterson, Elyse K.; Fielder, Thomas J.; MacGregor, Grant R.; Ito, Shosuke; Wakamatsu, Kazumasa; Gillen, Daniel L.; Eby, Victoria; Boissy, Raymond E.; Ganesan, Anand K.

    2015-01-01

    The mechanisms that lead to variation in human skin and hair color are not fully understood. To better understand the molecular control of skin and hair color variation, we modulated the expression of Tyrosinase (Tyr), which controls the rate-limiting step of melanogenesis, by expressing a single-copy, tetracycline-inducible shRNA against Tyr in mice. Moderate depletion of TYR was sufficient to alter the appearance of the mouse coat in black, agouti, and yellow coat color backgrounds, even though TYR depletion did not significantly inhibit accumulation of melanin within the mouse hair. Ultra-structural studies revealed that the reduction of Tyr inhibited the accumulation of terminal melanosomes, and inhibited the expression of genes that regulate melanogenesis. These results indicate that color in skin and hair is determined not only by the total amount of melanin within the hair, but also by the relative accumulation of mature melanosomes. PMID:26619124

  12. Insights into Obesity and Diabetes at the Intersection of Mouse and Human Genetics

    PubMed Central

    Kebede, Melkam A.; Attie, Alan D.

    2014-01-01

    Many of our insights into obesity and diabetes come from studies in mice carrying natural or induced mutations. In parallel, genome-wide association studies in humans have identified numerous genes that are causally associated with obesity and diabetes, but discovering the underlying mechanisms required in-depth studies in mice. We discuss the advantages of studying natural variation in mice and summarize several examples where the combination of human and mouse genetics opened windows into fundamental physiological pathways. A noteworthy example is the melanocortin-4 receptor and its role in energy balance. The pathway was delineated by discovering the gene responsible for the Agouti mutation in mice. With more targeted phenotyping, we predict that additional pathways relevant to human pathophysiology will discovered. PMID:25034129

  13. Epigenomic Adaptation to Low Dose Radiation

    SciTech Connect

    Gould, Michael N.

    2015-06-30

    The overall hypothesis of this grant application is that the adaptive responses elicited by low dose ionizing radiation (LDIR) result in part from heritable DNA methylation changes in the epigenome. In the final budget period at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, we will specifically address this hypothesis by determining if the epigenetically labile, differentially methylated regions (DMRs) that regulate parental-specific expression of imprinted genes are deregulated in agouti mice by low dose radiation exposure during gestation. This information is particularly important to ascertain given the 1) increased human exposure to medical sources of radiation; 2) increased number of people predicted to live and work in space; and 3) enhanced citizen concern about radiation exposure from nuclear power plant accidents and terrorist ‘dirty bombs.’

  14. Generation of neuropeptidergic hypothalamic neurons from human pluripotent stem cells

    PubMed Central

    Merkle, Florian T.; Maroof, Asif; Wataya, Takafumi; Sasai, Yoshiki; Studer, Lorenz; Eggan, Kevin; Schier, Alexander F.

    2015-01-01

    Hypothalamic neurons orchestrate many essential physiological and behavioral processes via secreted neuropeptides, and are relevant to human diseases such as obesity, narcolepsy and infertility. We report the differentiation of human pluripotent stem cells into many of the major types of neuropeptidergic hypothalamic neurons, including those producing pro-opiolemelanocortin, agouti-related peptide, hypocretin/orexin, melanin-concentrating hormone, oxytocin, arginine vasopressin, corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH) or thyrotropin-releasing hormone. Hypothalamic neurons can be generated using a ‘self-patterning’ strategy that yields a broad array of cell types, or via a more reproducible directed differentiation approach. Stem cell-derived human hypothalamic neurons share characteristic morphological properties and gene expression patterns with their counterparts in vivo, and are able to integrate into the mouse brain. These neurons could form the basis of cellular models, chemical screens or cellular therapies to study and treat common human diseases. PMID:25670790

  15. NEUROENDOCRINE ACTIONS AND REGULATION OF HYPOTHALAMIC NEUROPEPTIDE Y DURING LACTATION

    PubMed Central

    Crowley, W,R.; Ramoz, G.; Torto, R.; Keefe, K.A.; Wang, J. J.; Kalra, S. P.

    2007-01-01

    The expression of neuropeptide Y (NPY) and its co-messenger, agouti-related peptide (AgRP), in arcuate neurons of the hypothalamus is increased during lactation in rats. Our research has been addressing the questions of the physiological actions of these peptides during lactation and the physiological signals associated with lactation that result in increased expression of their genes. Our studies indicate that NPY and AgRP exert pleiotropic actions during lactation that help integrate neuroendocrine regulation of energy balance with controls over anterior and posterior pituitary hormone secretion. Further, reciprocal signaling to the NPY/AgRP system by leptin and ghrelin is responsible for the changes in expression of these hypothalamic peptides in lactating animals, and thus, may contribute to regulation of food intake and the various neuroendocrine adaptations of lactation. PMID:17241697

  16. Determinants of body weight regulation in humans.

    PubMed

    Moehlecke, Milene; Canani, Luis Henrique; Silva, Lucas Oliveira Junqueira E; Trindade, Manoel Roberto Maciel; Friedman, Rogerio; Leitão, Cristiane Bauermann

    2016-04-01

    Body weight is regulated by the ability of hypothalamic neurons to orchestrate behavioral, endocrine and autonomic responses via afferent and efferent pathways to the brainstem and the periphery. Weight maintenance requires a balance between energy intake and energy expenditure. Although several components that participate in energy homeostasis have been identified, there is a need to know in more detail their actions as well as their interactions with environmental and psychosocial factors in the development of human obesity. In this review, we examine the role of systemic mediators such as leptin, ghrelin and insulin, which act in the central nervous system by activating or inhibiting neuropeptide Y, Agouti-related peptide protein, melanocortin, transcript related to cocaine and amphetamine, and others. As a result, modifications in energy homeostasis occur through regulation of appetite and energy expenditure. We also examine compensatory changes in the circulating levels of several peripheral hormones after diet-induced weight loss. PMID:26910628

  17. AGRP neurons are sufficient to orchestrate feeding behavior rapidly and without training

    PubMed Central

    Aponte, Yexica; Atasoy, Deniz; Sternson, Scott M.

    2010-01-01

    Two intermingled hypothalamic neuron populations, specified by expression of agouti-related peptide (AGRP) or pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC), positively and negatively influence feeding behavior respectively, possibly by reciprocally regulating downstream melanocortin receptors. However, the sufficiency of these neurons to control behavior, and the relationship of their activity to the magnitude and dynamics of feeding are unknown. To measure this, we used channelrhodopsin-2 for cell type-specific photostimulation. Activation of only 800 AGRP neurons in mice evoked voracious feeding within minutes. The behavioral response increased with photoexcitable neuron number, photostimulation frequency, and stimulus duration. Conversely, POMC neuron stimulation reduced food intake and body weight, which required melanocortin receptor signaling. However, AGRP neuron-mediated feeding was not dependent on suppressing this melanocortin pathway, indicating that AGRP neurons directly engage feeding circuits. Furthermore, feeding was evoked selectively over drinking without training or prior photostimulus exposure, which suggests that AGRP neurons serve a dedicated role coordinating this complex behavior. PMID:21209617

  18. Network of hypothalamic neurons that control appetite

    PubMed Central

    Sohn, Jong-Woo

    2015-01-01

    The central nervous system (CNS) controls food intake and energy expenditure via tight coordinations between multiple neuronal populations. Specifically, two distinct neuronal populations exist in the arcuate nucleus of hypothalamus (ARH): the anorexigenic (appetite-suppressing) pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) neurons and the orexigenic (appetite-increasing) neuropeptide Y (NPY)/agouti-related peptide (AgRP) neurons. The coordinated regulation of neuronal circuit involving these neurons is essential in properly maintaining energy balance, and any disturbance therein may result in hyperphagia/obesity or hypophagia/starvation. Thus, adequate knowledge of the POMC and NPY/AgRP neuron physiology is mandatory to understand the pathophysiology of obesity and related metabolic diseases. This review will discuss the history and recent updates on the POMC and NPY/AgRP neuronal circuits, as well as the general anorexigenic and orexigenic circuits in the CNS. [BMB Reports 2015; 48(4): 229-233] PMID:25560696

  19. Tyrosinase Depletion Prevents the Maturation of Melanosomes in the Mouse Hair Follicle.

    PubMed

    Paterson, Elyse K; Fielder, Thomas J; MacGregor, Grant R; Ito, Shosuke; Wakamatsu, Kazumasa; Gillen, Daniel L; Eby, Victoria; Boissy, Raymond E; Ganesan, Anand K

    2015-01-01

    The mechanisms that lead to variation in human skin and hair color are not fully understood. To better understand the molecular control of skin and hair color variation, we modulated the expression of Tyrosinase (Tyr), which controls the rate-limiting step of melanogenesis, by expressing a single-copy, tetracycline-inducible shRNA against Tyr in mice. Moderate depletion of TYR was sufficient to alter the appearance of the mouse coat in black, agouti, and yellow coat color backgrounds, even though TYR depletion did not significantly inhibit accumulation of melanin within the mouse hair. Ultra-structural studies revealed that the reduction of Tyr inhibited the accumulation of terminal melanosomes, and inhibited the expression of genes that regulate melanogenesis. These results indicate that color in skin and hair is determined not only by the total amount of melanin within the hair, but also by the relative accumulation of mature melanosomes. PMID:26619124

  20. Topology of feather melanocyte progenitor niche allows complex pigment patterns to emerge.

    PubMed

    Lin, S J; Foley, J; Jiang, T X; Yeh, C Y; Wu, P; Foley, A; Yen, C M; Huang, Y C; Cheng, H C; Chen, C F; Reeder, B; Jee, S H; Widelitz, R B; Chuong, C M

    2013-06-21

    Color patterns of bird plumage affect animal behavior and speciation. Diverse patterns are present in different species and within the individual. Here, we study the cellular and molecular basis of feather pigment pattern formation. Melanocyte progenitors are distributed as a horizontal ring in the proximal follicle, sending melanocytes vertically up into the epithelial cylinder, which gradually emerges as feathers grow. Different pigment patterns form by modulating the presence, arrangement, or differentiation of melanocytes. A layer of peripheral pulp further regulates pigmentation via patterned agouti expression. Lifetime feather cyclic regeneration resets pigment patterns for physiological needs. Thus, the evolution of stem cell niche topology allows complex pigment patterning through combinatorial co-option of simple regulatory mechanisms. PMID:23618762

  1. Technical note: a novel method for routine genotyping of horse coat color gene polymorphisms.

    PubMed

    Royo, L J; Fernández, I; Azor, P J; Alvarez, I; Pérez-Pardal, L; Goyache, F

    2008-06-01

    The aim of this note is to describe a reliable, fast, and cost-effective real-time PCR method for routine genotyping of mutations responsible for most coat color variation in horses. The melanocortin-1 receptor, Agouti-signaling peptide, and membrane-associated transporter protein alleles were simultaneously determined using 2 PCR protocols. The assay described here is an alternative method for routine genotyping of a defined number of polymorphisms. Allelic variants are detected in real time and no post-PCR manipulations are required, therefore limiting costs and possible carryover contamination. Data can be copied to a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet for semiautomatic determination of the genotype using a macro freely available at http://www.igijon.com/personales/fgoyache/software_i.htm (last accessed February 26, 2007). The performance of the method is demonstrated on 156 Spanish Purebred horses. PMID:18310485

  2. Candidate Gene Analysis Suggests Untapped Genetic Complexity in Melanin-Based Pigmentation in Birds.

    PubMed

    Bourgeois, Yann X C; Bertrand, Joris A M; Delahaie, Boris; Cornuault, Josselin; Duval, Thomas; Milá, Borja; Thébaud, Christophe

    2016-07-01

    Studies on melanin-based color variation in a context of natural selection have provided a wealth of information on the link between phenotypic and genetic variation. Here, we evaluated associations between melanic plumage patterns and genetic polymorphism in the Réunion grey white-eye (Zosterops borbonicus), a species in which mutations on MC1R do not seem to play any role in explaining melanic variation. This species exhibits 5 plumage color variants that can be grouped into 3 color forms which occupy discrete geographic regions in the lowlands of Réunion, and a fourth high-elevation form which comprises 2 color morphs (grey and brown) and represents a true color polymorphism. We conducted a comprehensive survey of sequence variation in 96 individuals at a series of 7 candidate genes other than MC1R that have been previously shown to influence melanin-based color patterns in vertebrates, including genes that have rarely been studied in a wild bird species before: POMC, Agouti, TYR, TYRP1, DCT, Corin, and SLC24A5 Of these 7 genes, 2 (Corin and TYRP1) displayed an interesting shift in allele frequencies between lowland and highland forms and a departure from mutation-drift equilibrium consistent with balancing selection in the polymorphic highland form only. Sequence variation at Agouti, a gene frequently involved in melanin-based pigmentation patterning, was not associated with color forms or morphs. Thus, we suggest that functionally important changes in loci other than those classically studied are involved in the color polymorphism exhibited by the Réunion grey white-eye and possibly many other nonmodel species. PMID:26995742

  3. Detection of Mycobacterium ulcerans DNA in the Environment, Ivory Coast

    PubMed Central

    Tian, Roger Bi Diangoné; Niamké, Sébastian; Tissot-Dupont, Hervé; Drancourt, Michel

    2016-01-01

    Background Ivory Coast is a West African country with the highest reported cases of Buruli ulcer, a disabling subcutaneous infection due to Mycobacterium ulcerans. However, the prevalence of environmental M. ulcerans is poorly known in this country. Methods We collected 496 environmental specimens consisting of soil (n = 100), stagnant water (n = 200), plants (n = 100) and animal feces (n = 96) in Ivory Coast over five months in the dry and wet seasons in regions which are free of Buruli ulcer (control group A; 250 specimens) and in regions where the Buruli ulcer is endemic (group B; 246 specimens). After appropriate total DNA extraction incorporating an internal control, the M. ulcerans IS2404 and KR-B gene were amplified by real-time PCR in samples. In parallel, a calibration curve was done for M. ulcerans Agy99 IS2404 and KR-B gene. Results Of 460 samples free of PCR inhibition, a positive real-time PCR detection of insertion sequence IS2404 and KR-B gene was observed in 1/230 specimens in control group A versus 9/230 specimens in group B (P = 0.02; Fisher exact test). Positive specimens comprised seven stagnant water specimens, two feces specimens confirmed to be of Thryonomys swinderianus (agouti) origin by real-time PCR of the cytb gene; and one soil specimen. Extrapolation from the calibration curves indicated low inoculums ranging from 1 to 102 mycobacteria/mL. Conclusion This study confirms the presence of M. ulcerans in the watery environment surrounding patients with Buruli ulcer in Ivory Coast. It suggests that the agouti, which is in close contacts with populations, could play a role in the environmental cycle of M. ulcerans, as previously suggested for the closely related possums in Australia. PMID:26982581

  4. Genetic identification of a neural circuit that suppresses appetite.

    PubMed

    Carter, Matthew E; Soden, Marta E; Zweifel, Larry S; Palmiter, Richard D

    2013-11-01

    Appetite suppression occurs after a meal and in conditions when it is unfavourable to eat, such as during illness or exposure to toxins. A brain region proposed to play a role in appetite suppression is the parabrachial nucleus, a heterogeneous population of neurons surrounding the superior cerebellar peduncle in the brainstem. The parabrachial nucleus is thought to mediate the suppression of appetite induced by the anorectic hormones amylin and cholecystokinin, as well as by lithium chloride and lipopolysaccharide, compounds that mimic the effects of toxic foods and bacterial infections, respectively. Hyperactivity of the parabrachial nucleus is also thought to cause starvation after ablation of orexigenic agouti-related peptide neurons in adult mice. However, the identities of neurons in the parabrachial nucleus that regulate feeding are unknown, as are the functionally relevant downstream projections. Here we identify calcitonin gene-related peptide-expressing neurons in the outer external lateral subdivision of the parabrachial nucleus that project to the laterocapsular division of the central nucleus of the amygdala as forming a functionally important circuit for suppressing appetite. Using genetically encoded anatomical, optogenetic and pharmacogenetic tools, we demonstrate that activation of these neurons projecting to the central nucleus of the amygdala suppresses appetite. In contrast, inhibition of these neurons increases food intake in circumstances when mice do not normally eat and prevents starvation in adult mice whose agouti-related peptide neurons are ablated. Taken together, our data demonstrate that this neural circuit from the parabrachial nucleus to the central nucleus of the amygdala mediates appetite suppression in conditions when it is unfavourable to eat. This neural circuit may provide targets for therapeutic intervention to overcome or promote appetite. PMID:24121436

  5. Hypothalamic Non-AgRP, Non-POMC GABAergic Neurons Are Required for Postweaning Feeding and NPY Hyperphagia

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Eun Ran; Wu, Zhaofei; Sun, Hao; Xu, Yuanzhong; Mangieri, Leandra R.; Xu, Yong

    2015-01-01

    The hypothalamus is critical for feeding and body weight regulation. Prevailing studies focus on hypothalamic neurons that are defined by selectively expressing transcription factors or neuropeptides including those expressing proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and agouti-related peptides (AgRP). The Cre expression driven by the pancreas-duodenum homeobox 1 promoter is abundant in several hypothalamic nuclei but not in AgRP or POMC neurons. Using this line, we generated mice with disruption of GABA release from a major subset of non-POMC, non-AgRP GABAergic neurons in the hypothalamus. These mice exhibited a reduction in postweaning feeding and growth, and disrupted hyperphagic responses to NPY. Disruption of GABA release severely diminished GABAergic input to the paraventricular hypothalamic nucleus (PVH). Furthermore, disruption of GABA-A receptor function in the PVH also reduced postweaning feeding and blunted NPY-induced hyperphagia. Given the limited knowledge on postweaning feeding, our results are significant in identifying GABA release from a major subset of less appreciated hypothalamic neurons as a key mediator for postweaning feeding and NPY hyperphagia, and the PVH as one major downstream site that contributes significantly to the GABA action. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Prevalent studies on feeding in the hypothalamus focus on well characterized, selective groups neurons [e.g., proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and agouti-related peptide (AgRP) neurons], and as a result, the role of the majority of other hypothalamic neurons is largely neglected. Here, we demonstrated an important role for GABAergic projections from non-POMC non-AgRP neurons to the paraventricular hypothalamic nucleus in promoting postweaning (mainly nocturnal) feeding and mediating NPY-induced hyperphagia. Thus, these results signify an importance to study those yet to be defined hypothalamic neurons in the regulation of energy balance and reveal a neural basis for postweaning (nocturnal) feeding and NPY

  6. Plumage Genes and Little Else Distinguish the Genomes of Hybridizing Warblers.

    PubMed

    Toews, David P L; Taylor, Scott A; Vallender, Rachel; Brelsford, Alan; Butcher, Bronwyn G; Messer, Philipp W; Lovette, Irby J

    2016-09-12

    When related taxa hybridize extensively, their genomes may become increasingly homogenized over time. This mixing via hybridization creates conservation challenges when it reduces genetic or phenotypic diversity and when it endangers previously distinct species via genetic swamping [1]. However, hybridization also facilitates admixture mapping of traits that distinguish each species and the associated genes that maintain distinctiveness despite ongoing gene flow [2]. We address these dual aspects of hybridization in the golden-winged/blue-winged warbler complex, two phenotypically divergent warblers that are indistinguishable using traditional molecular markers and that draw substantial conservation attention [3-5]. Whole-genome comparisons show that differentiation is extremely low: only six small genomic regions exhibit strong differences. Four of these divergence peaks occur in proximity to genes known to be involved in feather development or pigmentation: agouti signaling protein (ASIP), follistatin (FST), ecodysplasin (EDA), wingless-related integration site (Wnt), and beta-carotene oxygenase 2 (BCO2). Throat coloration-the most striking plumage difference between these warblers-is perfectly associated with the promoter region of agouti, and genotypes at this locus obey simple Mendelian recessive inheritance of the black-throated phenotype characteristic of golden-winged warblers. The more general pattern of genomic similarity between these warblers likely results from a protracted period of hybridization, contradicting the broadly accepted hypothesis that admixture results from solely anthropogenic habitat change in the past two centuries [4]. Considered in concert, these results are relevant to both the genetic architecture of avian feather pigmentation and the evolutionary history and conservation challenges associated with these declining songbirds. PMID:27546575

  7. Cortical grey matter demyelination can be induced by elevated pro-inflammatory cytokines in the subarachnoid space of MOG-immunized rats.

    PubMed

    Gardner, Christopher; Magliozzi, Roberta; Durrenberger, Pascal F; Howell, Owain W; Rundle, Jon; Reynolds, Richard

    2013-12-01

    A substantial proportion of cases with secondary progressive multiple sclerosis have extensive inflammation in the leptomeninges that is associated with increased subpial demyelination, neuronal loss and an exacerbated disease course. However, the mechanisms underlying this extensive subpial pathology are poorly understood. We hypothesize that pro-inflammatory cytokine production within the meninges may be a key to this process. Post-mortem cerebrospinal fluid and dissected cerebral leptomeningeal tissue from patients with multiple sclerosis were used to study the presence of tumour necrosis factor and interferon gamma protein and messenger RNA levels. A novel model of subpial cortical grey matter demyelination was set up in Dark Agouti rats and analysed using quantitative immunohistochemistry. Increased expression of the pro-inflammatory cytokines tumour necrosis factor and interferon gamma was found in the meninges of cases with secondary progressive multiple sclerosis exhibiting tertiary lymphoid-like structures. Injection of tumour necrosis factor and interferon gamma into the subarachnoid space of female Dark Agouti rats pre-immunized with a subclinical dose of myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein mimicked the pathology seen in multiple sclerosis, including infiltration of lymphocytes (CD4+ and CD8+ T cells and CD79+ B cells) into the meninges and extensive subpial demyelination. Extensive microglial/macrophage activation was present in a gradient from the pial surface to deeper cortical layers. Demyelination did not occur in control animals immunized with incomplete Freund's adjuvant and injected with cytokines. These results support the hypothesis that pro-inflammatory molecules produced in the meninges play a major role in cortical demyelination in multiple sclerosis, but also emphasize the involvement of an anti-myelin immune response. PMID:24176976

  8. Species limits and relationships within Otidea inferred from multiple gene phylogenies.

    PubMed

    Hansen, K; Olariaga, I

    2015-12-01

    The genus Otidea is one of the more conspicuous members of the Pyronemataceae, with high species diversity in hemiboreal and boreal forests. The genus is morphologically coherent and in previous higher-level multi-gene analyses it formed a highly supported monophyletic group. Species delimitation within Otidea is controversial and much confusion has prevailed in the naming of taxa. To provide a phylogenetic hypothesis of Otidea, elucidate species diversity and limits we compiled a four-gene dataset including the nuclear LSU rDNA and three nuclear protein-coding genes (RPB1, RPB2 and EF-1α) for 89 specimens (total 4 877 nucleotides). These were selected from a larger sample of material studied using morphology and 146 ITS (ITS1-5.8S-ITS2) and 168 LSU rDNA sequences to represent the full genetic diversity. Using genealogical concordance phylogenetic species recognition (GCPSR), Bayesian and maximum likelihood analyses of the individual datasets resolved 25 species of Otidea. An additional eight singletons are considered to be distinct species, because they were genetically divergent from their sisters. Sequences of multiple genes were included from 13 holotypes, one neotype and three epitypes. Otidea angusta, O. myosotis and O. papillata f. pallidefurfuracea are nested within O. nannfeldtii, O. leporina and O. tuomikoskii, respectively and are considered synonyms. Otidea cantharella var. minor is shown to be a distinct species. Five new species were discovered: O. oregonensis and O. pseudoleporina for North America; and O. borealis, O. brunneoparva and O. subformicarum for Europe. The analyses of the individual four gene datasets yielded phylogenies that were highly concordant topologically, except for the RPB1 that showed supported conflict for some nodes in Bayesian analysis. Excluding the RPB1 from the combined analyses produced an identical topology to the four-gene phylogeny, but with higher support for several basal nodes and lower support for several shallow

  9. [Frugivory and seed dispersal Oenocarpus bataua palm (Arecaceae) in a forest from the Colombian Andes].

    PubMed

    Rojas-Robles, Rosario; Stiles, F Gary; Muñoz-Saba, Yaneth

    2012-12-01

    Seed dispersal is a key process that determines the spatial structure and dynamics of populations of plants, establishes the potential area of recruitment and in this way, the basis for subsequent processes such as predation, germination, competition and growth. The purpose of this research was to identify the guild of frugivores of the Oenocapus bataua palm in fragments of Andean forest, determine the effective dispersers and relate the spatial distribution of palm populations with the dispersion of seeds. To this end, between August 2005-June 2006, observations of the removal of fruits from eight clusters were done, and counting of consumption of fruits beneath 78 palms with mature fruits was undertaken; focal observations of 13 individuals during 90 hours; registration of frugivory with photographic traps during 165 days/nights for a total of 195 photographs and 144 consumption events; experiments with dispersion using 751 perforated fruits/seeds attached to strings and finally, plots to determine spatial distribution all were carried out. In the study area at least five species of mammals ate, dispersed, buried (Sciurus granatensis, Microsciurus mimulus, Dasyprocta punctata y Proechimys sp.), cover (Marmosa robinsoni) and carried the fruits of O. bataua off to caves (Marmosa robinsoni y Proechimys sp.) without damaging the seed. A 21.7% of the fruits were dispersed, 13.2 gnawed or peeled, 5.6% covered, buried and carried to caves. The average distance of removal of seeds and fruits was 3.1m although in a lesser proportion, dispersion events of >50m were recorded. The abundant production of fruits, their size and weight, their intense removal by frugivores, the short dispersion distances, the absence of large size frugivores (reduced by hunting and fragmentation), that might perform long-distance dispersion, and the increase of rodents, especially squirrels, that strongly pressure the fruit resource, generate a spatially restricted seed rain of seeds responsible

  10. Modulation of leptin resistance by food compounds.

    PubMed

    Aragonès, Gerard; Ardid-Ruiz, Andrea; Ibars, Maria; Suárez, Manuel; Bladé, Cinta

    2016-08-01

    Leptin is mainly secreted by white adipose tissue and regulates energy homeostasis by inhibiting food intake and stimulating energy expenditure through its action in neuronal circuits in the brain, particularly in the hypothalamus. However, hyperleptinemia coexists with the loss of responsiveness to leptin in common obese conditions. This phenomenon has been defined as leptin resistance and the restoration of leptin sensitivity is considered to be a useful strategy to treat obesity. This review summarizes the existing literature on potentially valuable nutrients and food components to reverse leptin resistance. Notably, several food compounds, such as teasaponins, resveratrol, celastrol, caffeine, and taurine among others, are able to restore the leptin signaling in neurons by overexpressing anorexigenic peptides (proopiomelanocortin) and/or repressing orexigenic peptides (neuropeptide Y/agouti-related peptide), thus decreasing food intake. Additionally, some nutrients, such as vitamins A and D, can improve leptin transport through the blood-brain barrier. Therefore, food components can improve leptin resistance by acting at different levels of the leptin pathway; moreover, some compounds are able to target more than one feature of leptin resistance. However, systematic studies are necessary to define the actual effectiveness of each compound. PMID:26842874

  11. Arcuate hypothalamic AgRP and putative POMC neurons show opposite changes in spiking across multiple timescales

    PubMed Central

    Mandelblat-Cerf, Yael; Ramesh, Rohan N; Burgess, Christian R; Patella, Paola; Yang, Zongfang; Lowell, Bradford B; Andermann, Mark L

    2015-01-01

    Agouti-related-peptide (AgRP) neurons—interoceptive neurons in the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus (ARC)—are both necessary and sufficient for driving feeding behavior. To better understand the functional roles of AgRP neurons, we performed optetrode electrophysiological recordings from AgRP neurons in awake, behaving AgRP-IRES-Cre mice. In free-feeding mice, we observed a fivefold increase in AgRP neuron firing with mounting caloric deficit in afternoon vs morning recordings. In food-restricted mice, as food became available, AgRP neuron firing dropped, yet remained elevated as compared to firing in sated mice. The rapid drop in spiking activity of AgRP neurons at meal onset may reflect a termination of the drive to find food, while residual, persistent spiking may reflect a sustained drive to consume food. Moreover, nearby neurons inhibited by AgRP neuron photostimulation, likely including satiety-promoting pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) neurons, demonstrated opposite changes in spiking. Finally, firing of ARC neurons was also rapidly modulated within seconds of individual licks for liquid food. These findings suggest novel roles for antagonistic AgRP and POMC neurons in the regulation of feeding behaviors across multiple timescales. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.07122.001 PMID:26159614

  12. Genes influencing spinal bone mineral density in inbred F344, LEW, COP, and DA rats

    PubMed Central

    Alam, Imranul; Sun, Qiwei; Koller, Daniel L.; Liu, Lixiang; Liu, Yunlong; Edenberg, Howard J.; Foroud, Tatiana

    2009-01-01

    Previously, we identified the regions of chromosomes 10q12–q31 and 15p16–q21 harbor quantitative trait loci (QTLs) for lumbar volumetric bone mineral density (vBMD) in female F2 rats derived from Fischer 344 (F344) × Lewis (LEW) and Copenhagen 2331 (COP) × Dark Agouti (DA) crosses. The purpose of this study is to identify the candidate genes within these QTL regions contributing to the variation in lumbar vBMD. RNA was extracted from bone tissue of F344, LEW, COP, and DA rats. Microarray analysis was performed using Affymetrix Rat Genome 230 2.0 Arrays. Genes differentially expressed among the rat strains were then ranked based on the strength of the correlation with lumbar vBMD in F2 animals derived from these rats. Quantitative PCR (qPCR) analysis was performed to confirm the prioritized candidate genes. A total of 285 genes were differentially expressed among all strains of rats with a false discovery rate less than 10%. Among these genes, 18 candidate genes were prioritized based on their strong correlation (r2 > 0.90) with lumbar vBMD. Of these, 14 genes (Akap1, Asgr2, Esd, Fam101b, Irf1, Lcp1, Ltc4s, Mdp-1, Pdhb, Plxdc1, Rabep1, Rhot1, Slc2a4, Xpo4) were confirmed by qPCR. We identified several novel candidate genes influencing spinal vBMD in rats. PMID:19841953

  13. Inhibition of myeloid differentiation factor 88 signaling mediated by histidine-grafted poly(β-amino ester) ester nanovector induces donor-specific liver allograft tolerance.

    PubMed

    Hu, Fanguo; Wang, Hanjie; Zhang, Shuangnan; Peng, Yao; Su, Lin; Chang, Jin; Liu, Gang

    2015-01-01

    Toll-like receptors (TLRs) activate biochemical pathways that evoke activation of innate immunity, which leads to dendritic cell maturation and initiation of adaptive immune responses that provoke allograft rejection. We aimed to prolong allograft survival by selectively inhibiting expression of myeloid differentiation factor 88 (MyD88), which is an essential adaptor in TLR signaling. We designed and synthesized a novel histidine-grafted poly(β-amino ester) (HGPAE) nanovector, which was shown to be safe and efficient both in vitro and in vivo for the delivery of a plasmid containing shRNA targeting MyD88 (pMyD88). We also demonstrated that the pMyD88/HGPAE complex mediated remarkable inhibition of MyD88 expression in rat liver in vivo. We transplanted Dark Agouti rat livers lacking MyD88 as result of transfection with the pMyD88/HGPAE complex into Lewis rats. The recipients survived longer and graft rejection of the donor liver as well as serum levels of IL-2 and IFN-γ in the recipient were significantly reduced. PMID:26185440

  14. Peptides: Basic determinants of reproductive functions.

    PubMed

    Celik, Onder; Aydin, Suleyman; Celik, Nilufer; Yilmaz, Musa

    2015-10-01

    Mammalian reproduction is a costly process in terms of energy consumption. The critical information regarding metabolic status is signaled to the hypothalamus mainly through peripheral peptides from the adipose tissue and gastrointestinal tract. Changes in energy stores produce fluctuations in leptin, insulin, ghrelin and glucose signals that feedback mainly to the hypothalamus to regulate metabolism and fertility. In near future, possible effects of the nutritional status on GnRH regulation can be evaluated by measuring serum or tissue levels of leptin and ghrelin in patiens suffering from infertility. The fact that leptin and ghrelin are antagonistic in their effects on GnRH neurons, their respective agonistic and antagonistic roles make them ideal candidates to use instead of GnRH agonist and antagonist. Similarly, kisspeptin expressing neurons are likely to mediate the well-established link between energy balance and reproductive functions. Exogenous kisspeptin can be used for physiological ovarian hyperstimulation for in-vitro fertilization. Moreover, kisspeptin antagonist therapy can be used for the treatment of postmenapousal women, precocious puberty, PCOS, endometriosis and uterine fibroids. In this review, we will analyze the central mechanisms involved in the integration of metabolic information and their contribution to the control of the reproductive function. Particular attention will be paid to summarize the participation of leptin, kisspeptin, ghrelin, NPY, orexin, urocortin, VIP, insulin, galanin, galanin like peptide, oxytocin, agouti gene-related peptide, and POMC neurons in this process and their possible interactions to contribute to the metabolic control of reproduction. PMID:26074346

  15. Teriflunomide, an inhibitor of dihydroorotate dehydrogenase for the potential oral treatment of multiple sclerosis.

    PubMed

    Palmer, Alan M

    2010-11-01

    Teriflunomide, being developed as a potential oral treatment for multiple sclerosis (MS) by sanofi-aventis, is the active metabolite of the rheumatoid arthritis drug leflunomide. Both teriflunomide and leflunomide are inhibitors of the mitochondrial enzyme dihydroorotate dehydrogenase, which is critically involved in pyrimidine synthesis. The production of activated T-cells largely depends on de novo pyrimidine synthesis, and thus pyrimidine depletion is thought to result in the inhibition of immune cell proliferation. Therapeutic efficacy of teriflunomide has been demonstrated in vivo in an experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis model of MS using Dark Agouti rats. In a phase II, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial of patients with relapsing-remitting MS, treatment with teriflunomide reduced the number of active lesions in the brain and preliminary evidence indicated a slowing in the development of disability. Recently reported data from the phase III TEMSO clinical trial support these initial findings. Compared with current therapies, teriflunomide has the advantage of oral administration. Thus, if good efficacy is demonstrated, teriflunomide may have a role to play in the future treatment of MS. PMID:21157651

  16. Probiotic factors partially improve parameters of 5-fluorouracil-induced intestinal mucositis in rats.

    PubMed

    Prisciandaro, Luca D; Geier, Mark S; Butler, Ross N; Cummins, Adrian G; Howarth, Gordon S

    2011-04-01

    Certain live bacteria have demonstrated preliminary indications of efficacy for the treatment of chemotherapy-induced intestinal mucositis. However, probiotic derived supernatants (SN) have yet to be investigated in the mucositis setting. We evaluated SN from Escherichia coli Nissle 1917 (EcN) and Lactobacillus fermentum BR11 (BR11) for their capacity to decrease 5-Fluorouracil (5-FU)-induced damage in vivo. Female Dark Agouti rats were gavaged with 1 mL of either SN or vehicle daily (days 0-8) and intraperitoneally injected with 5-FU (150 mg/kg) on day 5 to induce mucositis. On day 9, animals were culled and intestinal tissues collected. Significantly lower histological damage scores were apparent in the jejunum of 5-FU treated rats receiving SN compared to 5-FU controls. Myeloperoxidase levels in the jejunum of 5-FU treated rats were increased in vehicle and BR11 SN treatments compared to untreated controls, whereas no significant increase was observed after EcN SN treatment. 5-FU treatment significantly reduced villus height and crypt depth in the jejunum compared to normal controls; however no significant reduction in these parameters was observed in 5-FU treated rats receiving either SN. We conclude that bacterial SN, especially EcN, partially protect the intestine from 5-FU mucositis. Further studies are required to define specific mechanisms by which SN exert their beneficial effects. PMID:21307648

  17. Gs-coupled GPCR signalling in AgRP neurons triggers sustained increase in food intake

    PubMed Central

    Nakajima, Ken-ichiro; Cui, Zhenzhong; Li, Chia; Meister, Jaroslawna; Cui, Yinghong; Fu, Ou; Smith, Adam S.; Jain, Shalini; Lowell, Bradford B.; Krashes, Michael J.; Wess, Jürgen

    2016-01-01

    Agouti-related peptide (AgRP) neurons of the hypothalamus play a key role in regulating food intake and body weight, by releasing three different orexigenic molecules: AgRP; GABA; and neuropeptide Y. AgRP neurons express various G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) with different coupling properties, including Gs-linked GPCRs. At present, the potential role of Gs-coupled GPCRs in regulating the activity of AgRP neurons remains unknown. Here we show that the activation of Gs-coupled receptors expressed by AgRP neurons leads to a robust and sustained increase in food intake. We also provide detailed mechanistic data linking the stimulation of this class of receptors to the observed feeding phenotype. Moreover, we show that this pathway is clearly distinct from other GPCR signalling cascades that are operative in AgRP neurons. Our data suggest that drugs able to inhibit this signalling pathway may become useful for the treatment of obesity. PMID:26743492

  18. The role of leptin in striped hamsters subjected to food restriction and refeeding.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Zhi-Jun; Liu, Yong-An; Xing, Jing-Ya; Zhang, Mao-Lun; Ni, Xiao-Ying; Cao, Jing

    2014-07-01

    Food restriction (FR) and refeeding (Re) have been suggested to impair body mass regulation and thereby making it easier to regain the lost weight and develop over-weight when FR ends. However, it is unclear if this is the case in small mammals showing seasonal forging behaviors. In the present study, energy budget, body fat and serum leptin level were measured in striped hamsters that were exposed to FR-Re. The effects of leptin on food intake, body fat and genes expressions of several hypothalamus neuropeptides were determined. Body mass, fat content and serum leptin level decreased during FR and then increased during Re. Leptin supplement significantly attenuated the increase in food intake during Re, decreased genes expressions of neuropepetide Y (NPY) and agouti-related protein (AgRP) of hypothalamus and leptin of white adipose tissue (WAT). Hormone-sensitive lipase (HSL) gene expression of WAT increased in leptin-treated hamsters that were fed ad libitum, but decreased in FR-Re hamsters. This indicates that the adaptive regulation of WAT HSL gene expression may be involved in the mobilization of fat storage during Re, which partly contributes to the resistance to FR-Re-induced overweight. Leptin may be involved in the down regulations of hypothalamus orexigenic peptides gene expression and consequently plays a crucial role in controlling food intake when FR ends. PMID:25017744

  19. Regenerative metamorphosis in hairs and feathers: follicle as a programmable biological printer

    PubMed Central

    Oh, Ji Won; Lin, Sung-Jan; Plikus, Maksim V.

    2015-01-01

    Present-day hairs and feathers are marvels of biological engineering perfected over 200 million years of convergent evolution. Prominently, both follicle types coevolved regenerative cycling, wherein active filament making (anagen) is intermitted by a phase of relative quiescence (telogen). Such regenerative cycling enables follicles to “reload” their morphogenetic program and make qualitatively different filaments in the consecutive cycles. Indeed, many species of mammals and birds undergo regenerative metamorphosis, prominently changing their integument between juvenile and adult forms. This phenomenon is inconspicuous in mice, which led to the conventional perception that hair type is hardwired during follicle morphogenesis and cannot switch. A series of recent works by Chi and Morgan change this perception, and show that many mouse follicles naturally switch hair morphologies, for instance from “wavy” zigzag to straight awl, in the second growth cycle. A series of observations and genetic experiments show that back and forth hair type switching depends on the number of cells in the follicle's dermal papilla, with the critical threshold being around 40-50 cells. Pigmentation is another parameter that hair and feather follicles can reload between cycles, and even midway through anagen. Recent works show that hair and feather pigmentation “printing” programs coevolved to rely on pulsed expression of Agouti, a melanocortin receptor-1 antagonist, in the follicular mesenchyme. Here, we discuss broader implications of hair and feather regenerative plasticity. PMID:25557541

  20. Control of Energy Balance by Hypothalamic Gene Circuitry Involving Two Nuclear Receptors, Neuron-Derived Orphan Receptor 1 and Glucocorticoid Receptor

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Sun-Gyun; Lee, Bora; Kim, Dae-Hwan; Kim, Juhee; Lee, Soo-Kyung

    2013-01-01

    Nuclear receptors (NRs) regulate diverse physiological processes, including the central nervous system control of energy balance. However, the molecular mechanisms for the central actions of NRs in energy balance remain relatively poorly defined. Here we report a hypothalamic gene network involving two NRs, neuron-derived orphan receptor 1 (NOR1) and glucocorticoid receptor (GR), which directs the regulated expression of orexigenic neuropeptides agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and neuropeptide Y (NPY) in response to peripheral signals. Our results suggest that the anorexigenic signal leptin induces NOR1 expression likely via the transcription factor cyclic AMP response element-binding protein (CREB), while the orexigenic signal glucocorticoid mobilizes GR to inhibit NOR1 expression by antagonizing the action of CREB. Also, NOR1 suppresses glucocorticoid-dependent expression of AgRP and NPY. Consistently, relative to wild-type mice, NOR1-null mice showed significantly higher levels of AgRP and NPY and were less responsive to leptin in decreasing the expression of AgRP and NPY. These results identify mutual antagonism between NOR1 and GR to be a key rheostat for peripheral metabolic signals to centrally control energy balance. PMID:23897430

  1. Control of energy balance by hypothalamic gene circuitry involving two nuclear receptors, neuron-derived orphan receptor 1 and glucocorticoid receptor.

    PubMed

    Kim, Sun-Gyun; Lee, Bora; Kim, Dae-Hwan; Kim, Juhee; Lee, Seunghee; Lee, Soo-Kyung; Lee, Jae W

    2013-10-01

    Nuclear receptors (NRs) regulate diverse physiological processes, including the central nervous system control of energy balance. However, the molecular mechanisms for the central actions of NRs in energy balance remain relatively poorly defined. Here we report a hypothalamic gene network involving two NRs, neuron-derived orphan receptor 1 (NOR1) and glucocorticoid receptor (GR), which directs the regulated expression of orexigenic neuropeptides agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and neuropeptide Y (NPY) in response to peripheral signals. Our results suggest that the anorexigenic signal leptin induces NOR1 expression likely via the transcription factor cyclic AMP response element-binding protein (CREB), while the orexigenic signal glucocorticoid mobilizes GR to inhibit NOR1 expression by antagonizing the action of CREB. Also, NOR1 suppresses glucocorticoid-dependent expression of AgRP and NPY. Consistently, relative to wild-type mice, NOR1-null mice showed significantly higher levels of AgRP and NPY and were less responsive to leptin in decreasing the expression of AgRP and NPY. These results identify mutual antagonism between NOR1 and GR to be a key rheostat for peripheral metabolic signals to centrally control energy balance. PMID:23897430

  2. Palatability Can Drive Feeding Independent of AgRP Neurons.

    PubMed

    Denis, Raphaël G P; Joly-Amado, Aurélie; Webber, Emily; Langlet, Fanny; Schaeffer, Marie; Padilla, Stéphanie L; Cansell, Céline; Dehouck, Bénédicte; Castel, Julien; Delbès, Anne-Sophie; Martinez, Sarah; Lacombe, Amélie; Rouch, Claude; Kassis, Nadim; Fehrentz, Jean-Alain; Martinez, Jean; Verdié, Pascal; Hnasko, Thomas S; Palmiter, Richard D; Krashes, Michael J; Güler, Ali D; Magnan, Christophe; Luquet, Serge

    2015-10-01

    Feeding behavior is exquisitely regulated by homeostatic and hedonic neural substrates that integrate energy demand as well as the reinforcing and rewarding aspects of food. Understanding the net contribution of homeostatic and reward-driven feeding has become critical because of the ubiquitous source of energy-dense foods and the consequent obesity epidemic. Hypothalamic agouti-related peptide-secreting neurons (AgRP neurons) provide the primary orexigenic drive of homeostatic feeding. Using models of neuronal inhibition or ablation, we demonstrate that the feeding response to a fast ghrelin or serotonin receptor agonist relies on AgRP neurons. However, when palatable food is provided, AgRP neurons are dispensable for an appropriate feeding response. In addition, AgRP-ablated mice present exacerbated stress-induced anorexia and palatable food intake--a hallmark of comfort feeding. These results suggest that, when AgRP neuron activity is impaired, neural circuits sensitive to emotion and stress are engaged and modulated by food palatability and dopamine signaling. PMID:26278050

  3. Hypothalamic POMC Deficiency Improves Glucose Tolerance Despite Insulin Resistance by Increasing Glycosuria.

    PubMed

    Chhabra, Kavaljit H; Adams, Jessica M; Fagel, Brian; Lam, Daniel D; Qi, Nathan; Rubinstein, Marcelo; Low, Malcolm J

    2016-03-01

    Hypothalamic proopiomelanocortin (POMC) is essential for the physiological regulation of energy balance; however, its role in glucose homeostasis remains less clear. We show that hypothalamic arcuate nucleus (Arc)POMC-deficient mice, which develop severe obesity and insulin resistance, unexpectedly exhibit improved glucose tolerance and remain protected from hyperglycemia. To explain these paradoxical phenotypes, we hypothesized that an insulin-independent pathway is responsible for the enhanced glucose tolerance. Indeed, the mutant mice demonstrated increased glucose effectiveness and exaggerated glycosuria relative to wild-type littermate controls at comparable blood glucose concentrations. Central administration of the melanocortin receptor agonist melanotan II in mutant mice reversed alterations in glucose tolerance and glycosuria, whereas, conversely, administration of the antagonist Agouti-related peptide (Agrp) to wild-type mice enhanced glucose tolerance. The glycosuria of ArcPOMC-deficient mice was due to decreased levels of renal GLUT 2 (rGLUT2) but not sodium-glucose cotransporter 2 and was associated with reduced renal catecholamine content. Epinephrine treatment abolished the genotype differences in glucose tolerance and rGLUT2 levels, suggesting that reduced renal sympathetic nervous system (SNS) activity is the underlying mechanism for the observed glycosuria and improved glucose tolerance in ArcPOMC-deficient mice. Therefore, the ArcPOMC-SNS-rGLUT2 axis is potentially an insulin-independent therapeutic target to control diabetes. PMID:26467632

  4. Inflammation severely alters thyroid hormone signaling in the central nervous system during experimental allergic encephalomyelitis in rat: Direct impact on OPCs differentiation failure.

    PubMed

    Fernández, Mercedes; Baldassarro, Vito A; Sivilia, Sandra; Giardino, Luciana; Calzà, Laura

    2016-09-01

    Differentiation of oligodendrocyte precursor cells (OPCs) into myelinating oligodendrocytes is severely impaired by inflammatory cytokines and this could lead to remyelination failure in inflammatory/demyelinating diseases. Due to the role of thyroid hormone in the maturation of OPCs and developmental myelination, in this study we investigated (i) the possible occurrence of dysregulation of thyroid hormone signaling in the CNS tissue during experimental neuroinflammation; (ii) the possible impact of inflammatory cytokines on thyroid hormone signaling and OPCs differentiation in vitro. The disease model is the experimental allergic encephalomyelitis in female Dark-Agouti rats, whereas in vitro experiments were carried out in OPCs derived from neural stem cells. The main results are the following: (i) a strong upregulation of cytokine mRNA expression level was found in the spinal cord during experimental allergic encephalomyelitis; (ii) thyroid hormone signaling in the spinal cord (thyroid hormone receptors; deiodinase; thyroid hormone membrane transporter) is substantially downregulated, due to the upregulation of the thyroid hormone inactivating enzyme deiodinase 3 and the downregulation of thyroid hormone receptors, as investigated at mRNA expression level; (iii) when exposed to inflammatory cytokines, deiodinase 3 is upregulated in OPCs as well, and OPCs differentiation is blocked; (iv) deiodinase 3 inhibition by iopanoic acid recovers OPCs differentiation in the presence on inflammatory cytokines. These data suggest that cellular hypothyroidism occurs during experimental allergic encephalomyelitis, possibly impacting on thyroid hormone-dependent cellular processes, including maturation of OPCs into myelinating oligodendrocytes. GLIA 2016;64:1573-1589. PMID:27404574

  5. Hepatic Expression of Metallothionein I/II, Glycoprotein 96, IL-6, and TGF-β in Rat Strains with Different Susceptibilities to Experimental Autoimmune Encephalomyelitis

    PubMed Central

    Grubić-Kezele, Tanja; Blagojević Zagorac, Gordana; Jakovac, Hrvoje; Domitrović, Robert; Milin, Čedomila; Radošević-Stašić, Biserka

    2013-01-01

    In a search of peripheral factors that could be responsible for the discrepancy in susceptibility to EAE in Albino Oxford (AO) and Dark Agouti (DA) rats, we estimated the expression of metallothioneins I/II (MT), heat shock protein-gp96, interleukin (IL)-6, and transforming growth factor (TGF)-β in the livers of these animals. Rats were immunized with bovine brain homogenate (BBH) emulsified in complete Freund adjuvant (CFA) or only with CFA. Western blot and immunohistochemical analyses were done on day 12 after the immunization, as well as in intact rats. The data have shown that during the first attack of EAE only the EAE prone-DA rats markedly upregulated the hepatic MTs, gp96, IL-6, and TGF-β. In contrast, AO rats had a significantly higher expression of MT I/II, IL-6, and TGF-β in intact liver (P < 0,001), suggesting that the greater constitutive expression of these proteins contributed to the resistance of EAE. Besides, since previously we found that AO rats reacted on immunization by an early upregulation of TGF-β on several hepatic structures (vascular endothelium, Kupffer cells, and hepatocytes), the data suggest that the specific hepatic microenvironment might contribute also to the faster recovery of these rats from EAE. PMID:24489578

  6. Alternative Splicing and Transcriptome Profiling of Experimental Autoimmune Encephalomyelitis Using Genome-Wide Exon Arrays

    PubMed Central

    Gillett, Alan; Maratou, Klio; Fewings, Chris; Harris, Robert A.; Jagodic, Maja; Aitman, Tim; Olsson, Tomas

    2009-01-01

    Background Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is a chronic inflammatory disease causing demyelination and nerve loss in the central nervous system. Experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) is an animal model of MS that is widely used to investigate complex pathogenic mechanisms. Transcriptional control through isoform selection and mRNA levels determines pathway activation and ultimately susceptibility to disease. Methodology/Principal Findings We have studied the role of alternative splicing and differential expression in lymph node cells from EAE-susceptible Dark Agouti (DA) and EAE-resistant Piebald Virol Glaxo.AV1 (PVG) inbred rat strains using Affymetrix Gene Chip Rat Exon 1.0 ST Arrays. Comparing the two strains, we identified 11 differentially spliced and 206 differentially expressed genes at day 7 post-immunization, as well as 9 differentially spliced and 144 differentially expressed genes upon autoantigen re-stimulation. Functional clustering and pathway analysis implicate genes for glycosylation, lymphocyte activation, potassium channel activity and cellular differentiation in EAE susceptibility. Conclusions/Significance Our results demonstrate that alternative splicing occurs during complex disease and may govern EAE susceptibility. Additionally, transcriptome analysis not only identified previously defined EAE pathways regulating the immune system, but also novel mechanisms. Furthermore, several identified genes overlap known quantitative trait loci, providing novel causative candidate targets governing EAE. PMID:19915720

  7. Entire litters developed from transferred eggs in whole body x-irradiated female mice

    SciTech Connect

    Lin, T.P.

    1980-07-01

    The sensitivity of mouse eggs to sublethal x-irradiation was determined in vitro and in vivo with regard to the development of donor litters in foster mothers. One thousand seven hundred fifty-eight unfertilized eggs of agouti dark-eyed donor mice were transferred into 293 unirradiated or x-irradiated, mated female pink-eyed mice. Two hundred thirty-nine recipients became pregnant; of these 35 produced litters containing solely dark-eyed fetuses. Sublethal doses of x-radiation administered to donor eggs in vitro before transferring into unirradiated recipients did not influence significantly the number of litters of exclusively dark-eyed fetuses produced. However, recipients irradiated by 250 roentgens (r) produced more solely dark-eyed litters than did those irradiated with 100 r. In 21 pregnant females irradiated by 100 r, only 3 (14%) developed solely dark-eyed fetuses as compared to 22 pregnant females irradiated by 250 r, of which 13 (59%) developed solely dark-eyed fetuses, all from unirradiated, transferred eggs. Of another group of 22 pregnant females which received 250 r body irradiation and subsequently received eggs also irradiated by 250 r, only 7 (32%) produced litters of dark-eyed fetuses. No one female of these three groups carried native fetuses. Such radiation-induced infertility resulting from damage of native eggs rather than loss of mother's ability to carry a pregnancy, is frequently remedied by egg transfer.

  8. Effects of Hypothalamic Neurodegeneration on Energy Balance

    PubMed Central

    2005-01-01

    Normal aging in humans and rodents is accompanied by a progressive increase in adiposity. To investigate the role of hypothalamic neuronal circuits in this process, we used a Cre-lox strategy to create mice with specific and progressive degeneration of hypothalamic neurons that express agouti-related protein (Agrp) or proopiomelanocortin (Pomc), neuropeptides that promote positive or negative energy balance, respectively, through their opposing effects on melanocortin receptor signaling. In previous studies, Pomc mutant mice became obese, but Agrp mutant mice were surprisingly normal, suggesting potential compensation by neuronal circuits or genetic redundancy. Here we find that Pomc-ablation mice develop obesity similar to that described for Pomc knockout mice, but also exhibit defects in compensatory hyperphagia similar to what occurs during normal aging. Agrp-ablation female mice exhibit reduced adiposity with normal compensatory hyperphagia, while animals ablated for both Pomc and Agrp neurons exhibit an additive interaction phenotype. These findings provide new insight into the roles of hypothalamic neurons in energy balance regulation, and provide a model for understanding defects in human energy balance associated with neurodegeneration and aging. PMID:16296893

  9. Altered regulation of energy homeostasis in older rats in response to thyroid hormone administration.

    PubMed

    Walrand, Stephane; Short, Kevin R; Heemstra, Lydia A; Novak, Colleen M; Levine, James A; Coenen-Schimke, Jill M; Nair, K Sreekumaran

    2014-03-01

    Hyperthyroidism causes increased energy intake and expenditure, although anorexia and higher weight loss have been reported in elderly individuals with hyperthyroidism. To determine the effect of age on energy homeostasis in response to experimental hyperthyroidism, we administered 200 μg tri-iodothyronine (T3) in 7- and 27-mo-old rats for 14 d. T3 increased energy expenditure (EE) in both the young and the old rats, although the old rats lost more weight (147 g) than the young rats (58 g) because of the discordant effect of T3 on food intake, with a 40% increase in the young rats, but a 40% decrease in the old ones. The increased food intake in the young rats corresponded with a T3-mediated increase in the appetite-regulating proteins agouti-related peptide, neuropeptide Y, and uncoupling protein 2 in the hypothalamus, but no increase occurred in the old rats. Evidence of mitochondrial biogenesis in response to T3 was similar in the soleus muscle and heart of the young and old animals, but less consistent in old plantaris muscle and liver. Despite the comparable increase in EE, T3's effect on mitochondrial function was modulated by age in a tissue-specific manner. We conclude that older rats lack compensatory mechanisms to increase caloric intake in response to a T3-induced increase in EE, demonstrating a detrimental effect of age on energy homeostasis. PMID:24344330

  10. Inhibition of hypothalamic Foxo1 expression reduced food intake in diet-induced obesity rats

    PubMed Central

    Ropelle, Eduardo R; Pauli, José R; Prada, Patrícia; Cintra, Dennys E; Rocha, Guilherme Z; Moraes, Juliana C; Frederico, Marisa J S; da Luz, Gabrielle; Pinho, Ricardo A; Carvalheira, José B C; Velloso, Licio A; Saad, Mario A; De Souza, Cláudio T

    2009-01-01

    Insulin signalling in the hypothalamus plays a role in maintaining body weight. The forkhead transcription factor Foxo1 is an important mediator of insulin signalling in the hypothalamus. Foxo1 stimulates the transcription of the orexigenic neuropeptide Y and Agouti-related protein through the phosphatidylinositol-3-kinase/Akt signalling pathway, but the role of hypothalamic Foxo1 in insulin resistance and obesity remains unclear. Here, we identify that a high-fat diet impaired insulin-induced hypothalamic Foxo1 phosphorylation and degradation, increasing the nuclear Foxo1 activity and hyperphagic response in rats. Thus, we investigated the effects of the intracerebroventricular (i.c.v.) microinfusion of Foxo1-antisense oligonucleotide (Foxo1-ASO) and evaluated the food consumption and weight gain in normal and diet-induced obese (DIO) rats. Three days of Foxo1-ASO microinfusion reduced the hypothalamic Foxo1 expression by about 85%. i.c.v. infusion of Foxo1-ASO reduced the cumulative food intake (21%), body weight change (28%), epididymal fat pad weight (22%) and fasting serum insulin levels (19%) and increased the insulin sensitivity (34%) in DIO but not in control animals. Collectively, these data showed that the Foxo1-ASO treatment blocked the orexigenic effects of Foxo1 and prevented the hyperphagic response in obese rats. Thus, pharmacological manipulation of Foxo1 may be used to prevent or treat obesity. PMID:19332486

  11. Regulatory Alterations of Energy Homeostasis in Spontaneously Hypertensive Rats (SHR).

    PubMed

    Furedi, Nora; Miko, Alexandra; Aubrecht, Bianka; Gaszner, Balazs; Feller, Diana; Rostas, Ildiko; Tenk, Judit; Soos, Szilvia; Balasko, Marta; Balogh, Andras; Pap, Marianna; Petervari, Erika

    2016-08-01

    Spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR) have high sympathetic tone and progressive hypertension. Chronic calorie-restriction prevents hypertension. Their food intake (FI) and body weight are lower than in normotensive (NT) controls, even on a high-fat diet, suggesting a dysregulation of energy homeostasis. We assumed enhanced activity of hypothalamic anorexigenic melanocortins and diminished tone of orexigenic neuropeptide Y (NPY) in the background. FI of male SHR and NT Wistar rats was recorded in a FeedScale system upon intracerebroventricular injection of NPY, melanocortin ligands alpha-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (alpha-MSH), and agouti-related peptide (AgRP) or during a 7-day intracerebroventricular infusion of melanocortin antagonist HS024. Alpha-MSH, NPY, and AgRP immunoreactivities were semi-quantified in the arcuate (ARC) and paraventricular (PVN) nuclei of the hypothalamus in NT vs. SHR. Proopiomelanocortin gene expression was also assessed by quantitative RT-PCR in the ARC. Melanocortin-induced anorexia was stronger, FI induced by NPY or HS024 was smaller and delayed in SHR. Cellular alpha-MSH-specific signal density was higher in the ARC of SHR as evaluated by immunofluerescence, which was supported by PCR data. In the PVN, no differences in alpha-MSH-, NPY-, or AgRP-immunosignal were observed. Our results suggest that a higher melanocortin production/responsiveness and lower NPY responsiveness may contribute to the body weight dysregulation of SHR. PMID:27339773

  12. Hippuric acid and methyl hippuric acid in rat hair: possible monitoring of xylene and toluene exposure.

    PubMed

    Saito, Takeshi; Kusakabe, Takahiko; Takeichi, Sanae

    2003-04-23

    Thinner is mainly composed of toluene and xylenes, and we studied the incorporation of the main metabolites of toluene and xylenes, hippuric acid (HA) and o-, m-, and p-methyl hippuric acids (o-, m-, p-MHA), in dark agouti rats' hair. Rat black hair was shaved before any exposure with an electric shaver designed for animals. Studies were performed in vivo with exposures of 30 min per day at three different concentrations (100, 300, and 1000 ppm) of toluene and o-, m-, and p-xylene for a total of 10 times over 2 weeks. Newly grown hair was tweezed out from the root with tweezers at seventh of the last exposure. Hair samples were then washed, extracted, derivatized, and analyzed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS). HA and o-, m-, and p-MHA were not detected (ND) in the unexposed rat hair. After exposure, the metabolite concentration in the hair changed depending on the exposure concentration. Mean concentrations ranged from ND to 7.6 ng/mg, from ND to 13.8 ng/mg, from ND to 10.1 ng/mg, and from ND to 9.2 ng/ml hair for HA, o-, m-, and p-MHA, respectively. These results indicate that the metabolites concentrations in hair are effective indices of thinner exposure. PMID:12742703

  13. Fto colocalizes with a satiety mediator oxytocin in the brain and upregulates oxytocin gene expression

    SciTech Connect

    Olszewski, Pawel K.; Fredriksson, Robert; Eriksson, Jenny D.; Mitra, Anaya; Radomska, Katarzyna J.; Gosnell, Blake A.; Solvang, Maria N.; Levine, Allen S.; Schioeth, Helgi B.

    2011-05-13

    Highlights: {yields} The majority of neurons synthesizing a satiety mediator, oxytocin, coexpress Fto. {yields} The level of colocalization is similar in the male and female brain. {yields} Fto overexpression in hypothalamic neurons increases oxytocin mRNA levels by 50%. {yields} Oxytocin does not affect Fto expression through negative feedback mechanisms. -- Abstract: Single nucleotide polymorphisms in the fat mass and obesity-associated (FTO) gene have been associated with obesity in humans. Alterations in Fto expression in transgenic animals affect body weight, energy expenditure and food intake. Fto, a nuclear protein and proposed transcription co-factor, has been speculated to affect energy balance through a functional relationship with specific genes encoding feeding-related peptides. Herein, we employed double immunohistochemistry and showed that the majority of neurons synthesizing a satiety mediator, oxytocin, coexpress Fto in the brain of male and female mice. We then overexpressed Fto in a murine hypothalamic cell line and, using qPCR, detected a 50% increase in the level of oxytocin mRNA. Expression levels of several other feeding-related genes, including neuropeptide Y (NPY) and Agouti-related protein (AgRP), were unaffected by the FTO transfection. Addition of 10 and 100 nmol oxytocin to the cell culture medium did not affect Fto expression in hypothalamic cells. We conclude that Fto, a proposed transcription co-factor, influences expression of the gene encoding a satiety mediator, oxytocin.

  14. A neural basis for melanocortin-4 receptor regulated appetite

    PubMed Central

    Garfield, Alastair S.; Li, Chia; Madara, Joseph C.; Shah, Bhavik P.; Webber, Emily; Steger, Jennifer S.; Campbell, John N.; Gavrilova, Oksana; Lee, Charlotte E.; Olson, David P.; Elmquist, Joel K.; Tannous, Bakhos A.; Krashes, Michael J.; Lowell, Bradford B.

    2015-01-01

    Pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC)- and agouti-related peptide (AgRP)-expressing neurons are oppositely regulated by caloric depletion and co-ordinately stimulate and inhibit homeostatic satiety, respectively. This bimodality is principally underscored by the antagonistic actions of these ligands at downstream melanocortin-4 receptors (MC4R) within the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus. Although this population is critical to energy balance the underlying neural circuitry remains unknown. Enabled by mice expressing Cre-recombinase in MC4R neurons, we demonstrate bidirectional control of feeding following real-time activation and inhibition of PVHMC4R neurons and further identify these cells as a functional exponent of ARCAgRP neuron-driven hunger. Moreover, we reveal this function to be mediated by a PVHMC4R→lateral parabrachial nucleus (LPBN) pathway. Activation of this circuit encodes positive valence, but only in calorically depleted mice. Thus, the satiating and appetitive nature of PVHMC4R→LPBN neurons supports the principles of drive reduction and highlights this circuit as a promising target for anti-obesity drug development. PMID:25915476

  15. Neonatal insulin action impairs hypothalamic neurocircuit formation in response to maternal high-fat feeding.

    PubMed

    Vogt, Merly C; Paeger, Lars; Hess, Simon; Steculorum, Sophie M; Awazawa, Motoharu; Hampel, Brigitte; Neupert, Susanne; Nicholls, Hayley T; Mauer, Jan; Hausen, A Christine; Predel, Reinhard; Kloppenburg, Peter; Horvath, Tamas L; Brüning, Jens C

    2014-01-30

    Maternal metabolic homeostasis exerts long-term effects on the offspring's health outcomes. Here, we demonstrate that maternal high-fat diet (HFD) feeding during lactation predisposes the offspring for obesity and impaired glucose homeostasis in mice, which is associated with an impairment of the hypothalamic melanocortin circuitry. Whereas the number and neuropeptide expression of anorexigenic proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and orexigenic agouti-related peptide (AgRP) neurons, electrophysiological properties of POMC neurons, and posttranslational processing of POMC remain unaffected in response to maternal HFD feeding during lactation, the formation of POMC and AgRP projections to hypothalamic target sites is severely impaired. Abrogating insulin action in POMC neurons of the offspring prevents altered POMC projections to the preautonomic paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVH), pancreatic parasympathetic innervation, and impaired glucose-stimulated insulin secretion in response to maternal overnutrition. These experiments reveal a critical timing, when altered maternal metabolism disrupts metabolic homeostasis in the offspring via impairing neuronal projections, and show that abnormal insulin signaling contributes to this effect. PMID:24462248

  16. Failure to upregulate Agrp and Orexin in response to activity based anorexia in weight loss vulnerable rats characterized by passive stress coping and prenatal stress experience.

    PubMed

    Boersma, Gretha J; Liang, Nu-Chu; Lee, Richard S; Albertz, Jennifer D; Kastelein, Anneke; Moody, Laura A; Aryal, Shivani; Moran, Timothy H; Tamashiro, Kellie L

    2016-05-01

    We hypothesize that anorexia nervosa (AN) poses a physiological stress. Therefore, the way an individual copes with stress may affect AN vulnerability. Since prenatal stress (PNS) exposure alters stress responsivity in offspring this may increase their risk of developing AN. We tested this hypothesis using the activity based anorexia (ABA) rat model in control and PNS rats that were characterized by either proactive or passive stress-coping behavior. We found that PNS passively coping rats ate less and lost more weight during the ABA paradigm. Exposure to ABA resulted in higher baseline corticosterone and lower insulin levels in all groups. However, leptin levels were only decreased in rats with a proactive stress-coping style. Similarly, ghrelin levels were increased only in proactively coping ABA rats. Neuropeptide Y (Npy) expression was increased and proopiomelanocortin (Pomc) expression was decreased in all rats exposed to ABA. In contrast, agouti-related peptide (Agrp) and orexin (Hctr) expression were increased in all but the PNS passively coping ABA rats. Furthermore, DNA methylation of the orexin gene was increased after ABA in proactive coping rats and not in passive coping rats. Overall our study suggests that passive PNS rats have innate impairments in leptin and ghrelin in responses to starvation combined with prenatal stress associated impairments in Agrp and orexin expression in response to starvation. These impairments may underlie decreased food intake and associated heightened body weight loss during ABA in the passively coping PNS rats. PMID:26907996

  17. Hypothalamic lipophagy and energetic balance.

    PubMed

    Singh, Rajat

    2011-10-01

    Autophagy is a conserved cellular turnover process that degrades unwanted cytoplasmic material within lysosomes. Through "in bulk" degradation of cytoplasmic proteins and organelles, including lipid droplets, autophagy helps provide an alternative fuel source, in particular, when nutrients are scarce. Recent work demonstrates a role for autophagy in hypothalamic agouti-related peptide (AgRP) neurons in regulation of food intake and energy balance. The induction of autophagy in hypothalamic neurons during starvation mobilizes neuronal neutral lipids to generate neuron-intrinsic free fatty acids that serve to upregulate fasting-induced AgRP levels. Blocking autophagy in AgRP neurons in mice reduces fasting-induced food intake, and increases constitutive levels of anorexigenic hypothalamic proopiomelanocortin and its cleavage product α-melanocyte stimulating hormone. The energetic consequences of these molecular events are decreased body weight and reduced adiposity. The present article discusses this recent finding, as well as considers possible future directions that may help better understand how neuronal autophagy, and its possible reduction during aging, may affect whole body energy balance. PMID:22024462

  18. Peripheral chemerin administration modulates hypothalamic control of feeding.

    PubMed

    Brunetti, Luigi; Orlando, Giustino; Ferrante, Claudio; Recinella, Lucia; Leone, Sheila; Chiavaroli, Annalisa; Di Nisio, Chiara; Shohreh, Rugia; Manippa, Fabio; Ricciuti, Adriana; Vacca, Michele

    2014-01-01

    Chemerin is a recently identified adipokine that is involved in the regulation of adipogenesis, energy metabolism, and inflammation. The aim of the present study was to investigate the role of chemerin on food intake, body weight and hypothalamic peptidergic and aminergic modulators which play a pivotal role in feeding regulation in rats. Male adult Wistar rats were intraperitoneally injected, daily for 17 days at 9.00am, with either vehicle (saline; N=12) or chemerin (8μg/kg; N=12) and (16μg/kg; N=12). Food intake was recorded 24h after each administration. Animals were sacrificed 24h after the last injection. Total RNA was extracted from hypothalami and reverse transcribed to evaluate gene expression of agouti-related peptide (AgRP), neuropeptide Y (NPY), orexin-A, corticotrophin releasing hormone (CRH), pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) and cocaine and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART). Furthermore, we evaluated the effect of chemerin on dopamine, norepinephrine and serotonin steady state concentrations in rat hypothalamus homogenate, and monoamine release from rat hypothalamic synaptosomes. Chemerin administration (8 and 16μg/kg) decreased both food intake and body weight compared to vehicle, possibly associated with a significant increase in serotonin synthesis and release, in the hypothalamus. On the other hand, the pattern of gene expression following chemerin administration indicates a minor role played by chemerin as a peripheral appetite-regulating signal. PMID:24269538

  19. An excitatory paraventricular nucleus to AgRP neuron circuit that drives hunger.

    PubMed

    Krashes, Michael J; Shah, Bhavik P; Madara, Joseph C; Olson, David P; Strochlic, David E; Garfield, Alastair S; Vong, Linh; Pei, Hongjuan; Watabe-Uchida, Mitsuko; Uchida, Naoshige; Liberles, Stephen D; Lowell, Bradford B

    2014-03-13

    Hunger is a hard-wired motivational state essential for survival. Agouti-related peptide (AgRP)-expressing neurons in the arcuate nucleus (ARC) at the base of the hypothalamus are crucial to the control of hunger. They are activated by caloric deficiency and, when naturally or artificially stimulated, they potently induce intense hunger and subsequent food intake. Consistent with their obligatory role in regulating appetite, genetic ablation or chemogenetic inhibition of AgRP neurons decreases feeding. Excitatory input to AgRP neurons is important in caloric-deficiency-induced activation, and is notable for its remarkable degree of caloric-state-dependent synaptic plasticity. Despite the important role of excitatory input, its source(s) has been unknown. Here, through the use of Cre-recombinase-enabled, cell-specific neuron mapping techniques in mice, we have discovered strong excitatory drive that, unexpectedly, emanates from the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus, specifically from subsets of neurons expressing thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TRH) and pituitary adenylate cyclase-activating polypeptide (PACAP, also known as ADCYAP1). Chemogenetic stimulation of these afferent neurons in sated mice markedly activates AgRP neurons and induces intense feeding. Conversely, acute inhibition in mice with caloric-deficiency-induced hunger decreases feeding. Discovery of these afferent neurons capable of triggering hunger advances understanding of how this intense motivational state is regulated. PMID:24487620

  20. Tachykinin-1 in the Central Nervous System Regulates Adiposity in Rodents

    PubMed Central

    Trivedi, Chitrang; Shan, Xiaoye; Tung, Yi-Chun Loraine; Kabra, Dhiraj; Holland, Jenna; Amburgy, Sarah; Heppner, Kristy; Kirchner, Henriette; Yeo, Giles S. H.

    2015-01-01

    Ghrelin is a circulating hormone that targets the central nervous system to regulate feeding and adiposity. The best-characterized neural system that mediates the effects of ghrelin on energy balance involves the activation of neuropeptide Y/agouti-related peptide neurons, expressed exclusively in the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus. However, ghrelin receptors are expressed in other neuronal populations involved in the control of energy balance. We combined laser capture microdissection of several nuclei of the central nervous system expressing the ghrelin receptor (GH secretagoge receptor) with microarray gene expression analysis to identify additional neuronal systems involved in the control of central nervous system-ghrelin action. We identified tachykinin-1 (Tac1) as a gene negatively regulated by ghrelin in the hypothalamus. Furthermore, we identified neuropeptide k as the TAC1-derived peptide with more prominent activity, inducing negative energy balance when delivered directly into the brain. Conversely, loss of Tac1 expression enhances the effectiveness of ghrelin promoting fat mass gain both in male and in female mice and increases the susceptibility to diet-induced obesity in ovariectomized mice. Taken together, our data demonstrate a role TAC1 in the control energy balance by regulating the levels of adiposity in response to ghrelin administration and to changes in the status of the gonadal function. PMID:25751638

  1. Gut-associated lymphoid tissue, gut microbes and susceptibility to experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis.

    PubMed

    Stanisavljević, S; Lukić, J; Momčilović, M; Miljković, M; Jevtić, B; Kojić, M; Golić, N; Mostarica Stojković, M; Miljković, D

    2016-06-01

    Gut microbiota and gut-associated lymphoid tissue have been increasingly appreciated as important players in pathogenesis of various autoimmune diseases, including multiple sclerosis. Experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) is an animal model of multiple sclerosis that can be induced with an injection of spinal cord homogenate emulsified in complete Freund's adjuvant in Dark Agouti (DA) rats, but not in Albino Oxford (AO) rats. In this study, mesenteric lymph nodes (MLN), Peyer's patches (PP) and gut microbiota were analysed in these two rat strains. There was higher proportion of CD4(+) T cells and regulatory T cells in non-immunised DA rats in comparison to AO rats. Also, DA rat MLN and PP cells were higher producers of pro-inflammatory cytokines interferon-γ and interleukin-17. Finally, microbial analyses showed that uncultivated species of Turicibacter and Atopostipes genus were exclusively present in AO rats, in faeces and intestinal tissue, respectively. Thus, it is clear that in comparison of an EAE-susceptible with an EAE-resistant strain of rats, various discrepancies at the level of gut associated lymphoid tissue, as well as at the level of gut microbiota can be observed. Future studies should determine if the differences have functional significance for EAE pathogenesis. PMID:26839070

  2. Effects of altered glucose supply and adiposity on expression of hypothalamic energy balance regulatory genes in late gestation growth restricted ovine fetuses.

    PubMed

    Adam, C L; Bake, T; Findlay, P A; Milne, J S; Aitken, R P; Wallace, J M

    2011-11-01

    Intra-uterine growth restriction (IUGR) predisposes obesity in adulthood. This may be due to altered fetal nutrition causing sustained changes within the developing hypothalamic energy balance regulatory system. Using our established ovine model of IUGR, 130-day singleton fetuses (term=147 days) were obtained from growing adolescent mothers on control dietary intake (C), high intake (H) or H with growth hormone administration during either early (H+early GH) or late gestation (H+late GH) (n=6/group). GH increased maternal glycemia for the duration of treatment. H and H+early GH fetuses showed IUGR compared with C fetuses; body weight was partially restored in H+late GH fetuses, with 40% increased adiposity. In the fetal hypothalamic arcuate nucleus (ARC), cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript mRNA (anorexigenic) was decreased in H fetuses and correlated across all groups with total fetal liver glycogen. Neuropeptide Y, agouti-related peptide (orexigenic) and proopiomelanocortin (anorexigenic) mRNAs were not different between groups. Insulin receptor mRNA in the ARC was increased in H, H+early GH and H+late GH fetuses and correlated negatively with fetal plasma insulin. Leptin receptor mRNA in the ARC correlated positively with fetal plasma leptin concentration and fetal fat content. Therefore, in IUGR fetuses, a key anorexigenic neuropeptide is sensitive to altered glucose supply and the hypothalamic leptin-signaling pathway is altered prenatally by increased adiposity and leptinemia. These changes could impact on postnatal energy balance regulation. PMID:21616134

  3. Effect of graft preservation and acute rejection on hypoxia-inducible factor-1 in rat cardiac allografts.

    PubMed

    Keränen, M A I; Nykänen, A I; Krebs, R; Tuuminen, R; Sandelin, H; Koskinen, P K; Lemström, K B

    2006-12-01

    Hypoxia plays an integral part in cardiac transplantation as prolonged graft preservation is an individual risk factor for the development of cardiac allograft vasculopathy (CAV). In this study we characterized the role of hypoxia-inducible factor-1 (HIF-1) during prolonged graft preservation, ischemia-reperfusion (I/R), acute rejection, and chronic rejection. Heart transplantations were performed from Dark Agouti (DA) to Wister-Furth (allo) or DA to DA (syn) rats, without immunosuppression (acute rejection model, harvested at day 5) or with cyclosporine (chronic rejection model, harvested at day 60). To study the effect of preservation on HIF-1 regulation, normal DA hearts were subjected to different cold ischemia times with or without 45 minutes of additional warm ischemia. The role of I/R was studied by harvesting syngrafts at different time points after reperfusion. Real-time reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction quantified total HIF-1 mRNA, while enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and immunohistochemistry quantified and localized HIF-1 protein. Our results show that HIF-1 nuclear immunoreactivity is increased during graft preservation and I/R leads to loss of nuclear HIF-1 immunoreactivity. Acute rejection induced HIF-1 in mRNA level. Our findings thus indicated that HIF-1 is activated during transplantation and suggested that manipulation of the HIF-1 pathway might reveal new therapeutic options to manage CAV. PMID:17175275

  4. Ex vivo intracoronary gene transfer of adeno-associated virus 2 leads to superior transduction over serotypes 8 and 9 in rat heart transplants.

    PubMed

    Raissadati, Alireza; Jokinen, Janne J; Syrjälä, Simo O; Keränen, Mikko A I; Krebs, Rainer; Tuuminen, Raimo; Arnaudova, Ralica; Rouvinen, Eeva; Anisimov, Andrey; Soronen, Jarkko; Pajusola, Katri; Alitalo, Kari; Nykänen, Antti I; Lemström, Karl

    2013-11-01

    Heart transplant gene therapy requires vectors with long-lasting gene expression, high cardiotropism, and minimal pathological effects. Here, we examined transduction properties of ex vivo intracoronary delivery of adeno-associated virus (AAV) serotype 2, 8, and 9 in rat syngenic and allogenic heart transplants. Adult Dark Agouti (DA) rat hearts were intracoronarily perfused ex vivo with AAV2, AAV8, or AAV9 encoding firefly luciferase and transplanted heterotopically into the abdomen of syngenic DA or allogenic Wistar-Furth (WF) recipients. Serial in vivo bioluminescent imaging of syngraft and allograft recipients was performed for 6 months and 4 weeks, respectively. Grafts were removed for PCR-, RT-PCR, and luminometer analysis. In vivo bioluminescent imaging of recipients showed that AAV9 induced a prominent and stable luciferase activity in the abdomen, when compared with AAV2 and AAV8. However, ex vivo analyses revealed that intracoronary perfusion with AAV2 resulted in the highest heart transplant transduction levels in syngrafts and allografts. Ex vivo intracoronary delivery of AAV2 resulted in efficient transgene expression in heart transplants, whereas intracoronary AAV9 escapes into adjacent tissues. In terms of cardiac transduction, these results suggest AAV2 as a potential vector for gene therapy in preclinical heart transplants studies, and highlight the importance of delivery route in gene transfer studies. PMID:24102821

  5. An animal model of human cytomegalovirus infection.

    PubMed

    Gao, L; Qian, S; Zeng, L; Wang, R; Wei, G; Fan, J; Zheng, S

    2007-12-01

    To develop a rat model that allowed in vivo progressive human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) infection, allogeneic liver transplantation was performed across a rat combination of Dark Agouti (DA) to Brown Norway (BN). AD169, a well-characterized laboratory strain of HCMV, was used to establish a rat model of HCMV infection by injection of 0.4 mL (30.0 logTCID50) supernate into the rat peritoneum. Histological and blood specimens were obtained from animals sacrificed at predetermined timepoints. We performed immunohistochemical staining in liver, heart, kidney, spleen, and lung for HCMV immediate-early antigen (IE), lower matrix protein (pp65) detection in peripheral blood leukocytes, and HCMV early antigen (EA) and late antigen (LA). We compared survival rates. Our results showed positive HCMV IE and pp65 antigenemia detected in peripheral blood leukocytes in transplanted recipients from day 1 to day 30. Positive HCMV EA and LA staining cells were only detected in sections 10 days after liver transplantation, namely, in hepatocytes, mononuclear cells, bile duct epithelial cells, and endothelial cells. Successful HCMV replication was due to the combination of liver transplantation and cyclosporine (CsA) immunosuppression. Survival analysis showed no significant differences between the HCMV-infected group and HCMV-uninfected group. This new rat model of HCMV infection may be helpful to understand immune system modulation of HCMV infection. PMID:18089401

  6. Mobilization of host stem cells enables long-term liver transplant acceptance in a strongly rejecting rat strain combination.

    PubMed

    Okabayashi, T; Cameron, A M; Hisada, M; Montgomery, R A; Williams, G M; Sun, Z

    2011-10-01

    Careful examination of liver, kidney and heart transplants in human recipients has revealed small numbers of host bone marrow derived stem cells in the graft. If the limited recipient repopulation of a donor graft that is currently observed could be facilitated, it is possible that conversion to a predominantly host phenotype would permit long-term graft function without immunosuppression. We proposed to "engineer" repopulation after transplant in a strain combination (dark agouti [DA] to Lewis green fluorescent protein+[LEW GFP+]) which rejects liver grafts strongly, a model that more closely resembles the situation in humans. Treatment on days 0, 1, 2, 3 and 7 after transplantation with low-dose (0.1 mg/kg) tacrolimus (T) designed to blunt rejection combined with plerixafor (P) to mobilize host stem cells resulted in greater than 180 days graft survival with extensive albeit spotty conversion of a small (50%) DA graft to the recipient LEW GFP+ genotype. Subsequent skin grafting revealed donor-specific graft prolongation. The T plus P treatment resulted in higher levels of Lin-Thy1+CD34+CD133+ stem cells and Foxp3+ regulatory T cells in the blood and liver at day 7. Thus, pharmacological mobilization of host stem cells sustains liver allografts by two mechanisms: repopulation of injured donor cells and regulation of the immune response. PMID:21883903

  7. Human C-reactive protein impedes entry of leptin into the CNS and attenuates its physiological actions in the CNS.

    PubMed

    Li, Jie; Wei, Dong; McCrory, Mark A; Szalai, Alexander J; Yang, Gangyi; Li, Ling; Li, Fanghong; Zhao, Allan Z

    2016-05-01

    Defective central leptin signalling and impaired leptin entry into the CNS (central nervous system) represent two important aspects of leptin resistance in obesity. In the present study, we tested whether circulating human CRP (C-reactive protein) not only diminishes signalling of leptin within the CNS, but also impedes this adipokine's access to the CNS. Peripheral infusion of human CRP together with co-infused human leptin was associated with significantly decreased leptin content in the CSF of ob/ob mice. Furthermore, following peripheral infusion of human leptin, the CSF (cerebrospinal fluid) concentration of leptin in transgenic mice overexpressing human CRP was sharply lower than that achieved in similarly infused wild-type mice. Administration of LPS (lipopolysaccharide) to human CRP-transgenic mice dramatically elevated the concentrations of human CRP in the CSF. The i.c.v. (intracerebroventricular) delivery of human CRP into the lateral ventricles of ob/ob mice blocked the satiety and weight-reducing actions of human leptin, but not those of mouse leptin. I.c.v. injection of human CRP abolished hypothalamic signalling by human leptin, and ameliorated the effects of leptin on the expression of NPY (neuropeptide Y), AgRP (Agouti-related protein), POMC (pro-opiomelanocortin) and SOCS-3 (suppressor of cytokine signalling 3). Human CRP can impede the access of leptin to the CNS, and elevation of human CRP within the CNS can have a negative impact on the physiological actions of leptin. PMID:26933237

  8. Sexual dimorphism in the aged rat CD4+ T lymphocyte-mediated immune response elicited by inoculation with spinal cord homogenate.

    PubMed

    Nacka-Aleksić, Mirjana; Pilipović, Ivan; Stojić-Vukanić, Zorica; Kosec, Duško; Bufan, Biljana; Vujnović, Ivana; Arsenović-Ranin, Nevena; Dimitrijević, Mirjana; Leposavić, Gordana

    2015-12-01

    Considering the crucial pathogenic role of CD4+ T cells in experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) and the opposite direction of the sexual dimorphism in the severity of the disease in 22-24-and 3-month-old dark agouti rats, sex differences in CD4+ T-cell-mediated immune response in aged rats immunized for EAE were examined and compared with those in young animals. In the inductive phase of EAE, fewer activated CD4+ lymphocytes were retrieved from draining lymph nodes of male (developing less severe disease) compared with female rats, due, at least partly, to their lesser expansion. The former reflected a greater suppressive capacity of CD4+CD25+Foxp3+ cells. Consequently, CD4+ lymphocyte infiltration into the spinal cord of aged male rats was diminished. At the peak of EAE, the frequency of reactivated cells was lower, whereas that of the regulatory CD4+ cells was higher in male rat spinal cord. Consistently, microglial activation and the expression of proinflammatory/damaging cytokines in male rat spinal cord mononuclear cells were diminished. Additionally, the frequency of the highly pathogenic IL-17+IFN-γ+ T lymphocytes infiltrating their spinal cord was lower. Together, these results point to (i) an age-specificity in CD4+ cell-mediated immune response and (ii) mechanisms underlying the sex differences in this response in aged rats. PMID:26408399

  9. Neuroregulation of nonexercise activity thermogenesis and obesity resistance.

    PubMed

    Kotz, Catherine M; Teske, Jennifer A; Billington, Charles J

    2008-03-01

    High levels of spontaneous physical activity in lean people and the nonexercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT) derived from that activity appear to protect lean people from obesity during caloric challenge, while obesity in humans is characterized by dramatically reduced spontaneous physical activity. We have similarly demonstrated that obesity-resistant rats have significantly greater spontaneous physical activity than obesity-prone rats, and that spontaneous physical activity predicts body weight gain. Although the energetic cost of activity varies between types of activity and may be regulated, individual level of spontaneous physical activity is important in determining propensity for obesity. We review the current status of knowledge about the brain mechanisms involved in controlling the level of spontaneous physical activity and the NEAT so generated. Focus is on potential neural mediators of spontaneous physical activity and NEAT, including orexin A (also known as hypocretin 1), agouti-related protein, ghrelin, and neuromedin U, in addition to brief mention of neuropeptide Y, corticotrophin releasing hormone, cholecystokinin, estrogen, leptin, and dopamine effects on spontaneous physical activity. We further review evidence that strain differences in orexin stimulation pathways for spontaneous physical activity and NEAT appear to track with the body weight phenotype, thus providing a potential mechanistic explanation for reduced activity and weight gain. PMID:18160530

  10. Hypothalamic AgRP-neurons control peripheral substrate utilization and nutrient partitioning

    PubMed Central

    Joly-Amado, Aurélie; Denis, Raphaël G P; Castel, Julien; Lacombe, Amélie; Cansell, Céline; Rouch, Claude; Kassis, Nadim; Dairou, Julien; Cani, Patrice D; Ventura-Clapier, Renée; Prola, Alexandre; Flamment, Melissa; Foufelle, Fabienne; Magnan, Christophe; Luquet, Serge

    2012-01-01

    Obesity-related diseases such as diabetes and dyslipidemia result from metabolic alterations including the defective conversion, storage and utilization of nutrients, but the central mechanisms that regulate this process of nutrient partitioning remain elusive. As positive regulators of feeding behaviour, agouti-related protein (AgRP) producing neurons are indispensible for the hypothalamic integration of energy balance. Here, we demonstrate a role for AgRP-neurons in the control of nutrient partitioning. We report that ablation of AgRP-neurons leads to a change in autonomic output onto liver, muscle and pancreas affecting the relative balance between lipids and carbohydrates metabolism. As a consequence, mice lacking AgRP-neurons become obese and hyperinsulinemic on regular chow but display reduced body weight gain and paradoxical improvement in glucose tolerance on high-fat diet. These results provide a direct demonstration of a role for AgRP-neurons in the coordination of efferent organ activity and nutrient partitioning, providing a mechanistic link between obesity and obesity-related disorders. PMID:22990237

  11. The functional requirements of mammalian hair: a compromise between crypsis and thermoregulation?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wacker, Chris B.; McAllan, Bronwyn M.; Körtner, Gerhard; Geiser, Fritz

    2016-08-01

    Mammalian fur often shows agouti banding with a proximal dark band near the skin and a lighter distal band. We examined the function of both bands in relation to camouflage, thermal properties of pelts, and thermal energetics of dunnarts ( Sminthopsis crassicaudata), which are known to use torpor and basking. Although the distal band of dunnart fur darkened with increasing latitude, which is important for camouflage, it did not affect the thermal properties and the length of the dark band and total hair length were not correlated. In contrast, the length of the proximal dark band of preserved pelts exposed to sunlight was positively correlated ( r 2 = 0.59) with the temperature underneath the pelt ( T pelt). All dunnarts offered radiant heat basked by exposing the dark band of the hair during both rest and torpor. Basking dunnarts with longer dark bands had lower resting metabolism ( r 2 = 0.69), warmed faster from torpor ( r 2 = 0.77), required less energy to do so ( r 2 = 0.32), and reached a higher subcutaneous temperature ( T sub) at the end of rewarming ( r 2 = 0.75). We provide the first experimental evidence on the possible dual function of the color banding of mammalian fur. The distal colored band appears to be important for camouflage, whereas the length of the dark proximal hair band facilitates heat gain for energy conservation and allows animals to rewarm quickly and economically from torpor.

  12. Effects of pregnane glycosides on food intake depend on stimulation of the melanocortin pathway and BDNF in an animal model.

    PubMed

    Komarnytsky, Slavko; Esposito, Debora; Rathinasabapathy, Thirumurugan; Poulev, Alexander; Raskin, Ilya

    2013-02-27

    Pregnane glycosides appear to modulate food intake by possibly affecting the hypothalamic feeding circuits; however, the mechanisms of the appetite-regulating effect of pregnane glycosides remain obscure. Here, we show that pregnane glycoside-enriched extracts from swamp milkweed Asclepias incarnata at 25-100 mg/kg daily attenuated food intake (up to 47.1 ± 8.5% less than controls) and body weight gain in rats (10% for males and 9% for females, respectively) by activating melanocortin signaling and inhibiting gastric emptying. The major milkweed pregnane glycoside, ikemagenin, exerted its appetite-regulating effect by decreasing levels of agouti-related protein (0.6-fold) but not NPY satiety peptides. Ikemagenin treatment also increased secretion of brain-derived neurotropic factor (BDNF) downstream of melanocortin receptors in the hypothalamus (1.4-fold) and in the C6 rat glioma cell culture in vitro (up to 6-fold). These results support the multimodal effects of pregnane glycosides on feeding regulation, which depends on the activity of the melanocortin signaling pathway and BDNF. PMID:23308358

  13. Cell type-specific transcriptomics of hypothalamic energy-sensing neuron responses to weight-loss

    PubMed Central

    Henry, Fredrick E; Sugino, Ken; Tozer, Adam; Branco, Tiago; Sternson, Scott M

    2015-01-01

    Molecular and cellular processes in neurons are critical for sensing and responding to energy deficit states, such as during weight-loss. Agouti related protein (AGRP)-expressing neurons are a key hypothalamic population that is activated during energy deficit and increases appetite and weight-gain. Cell type-specific transcriptomics can be used to identify pathways that counteract weight-loss, and here we report high-quality gene expression profiles of AGRP neurons from well-fed and food-deprived young adult mice. For comparison, we also analyzed Proopiomelanocortin (POMC)-expressing neurons, an intermingled population that suppresses appetite and body weight. We find that AGRP neurons are considerably more sensitive to energy deficit than POMC neurons. Furthermore, we identify cell type-specific pathways involving endoplasmic reticulum-stress, circadian signaling, ion channels, neuropeptides, and receptors. Combined with methods to validate and manipulate these pathways, this resource greatly expands molecular insight into neuronal regulation of body weight, and may be useful for devising therapeutic strategies for obesity and eating disorders. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.09800.001 PMID:26329458

  14. Increased hypothalamic 5-HT2A receptor gene expression and effects of pharmacologic 5-HT2A receptor inactivation in obese A{sup y} mice

    SciTech Connect

    Nonogaki, Katsunori . E-mail: knonogaki-tky@umin.ac.jp; Nozue, Kana; Oka, Yoshitomo

    2006-12-29

    Serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine; 5-HT) 2A receptors contribute to the effects of 5-HT on platelet aggregation and vascular smooth muscle cell proliferation, and are reportedly involved in decreases in plasma levels of adiponectin, an adipokine, in diabetic subjects. Here, we report that systemic administration of sarpogrelate, a 5-HT2A receptor antagonist, suppressed appetite and increased hypothalamic pro-opiomelanocortin and cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript, corticotropin releasing hormone, 5-HT2C, and 5-HT1B receptor gene expression. A{sup y} mice, which have ectopic expression of the agouti protein, significantly increased hypothalamic 5-HT2A receptor gene expression in association with obesity compared with wild-type mice matched for age. Systemic administration of sarpogrelate suppressed overfeeding, body weight gain, and hyperglycemia in obese A{sup y} mice, whereas it did not increase plasma adiponectin levels. These results suggest that obesity increases hypothalamic 5-HT2A receptor gene expression, and pharmacologic inactivation of 5-HT2A receptors inhibits overfeeding and obesity in A{sup y} mice, but did not increase plasma adiponectin levels.

  15. The Alpha-Melanocyte-Stimulating Hormone Suppresses TLR2-Mediated Functional Responses through IRAK-M in Normal Human Keratinocytes

    PubMed Central

    Ryu, Sunhyo; Johnson, Andrew; Park, Yoonkyung; Kim, Beomjoon; Norris, David; Armstrong, Cheryl A.; Song, Peter I.

    2015-01-01

    Alpha-melanocyte stimulating hormone (α-MSH) is a highly conserved 13-aa neuropeptide derived from pro-opiomelanocortin by post-translational processing, which has been reported to exhibit potent anti-inflammatory activity and a wide range of immunosuppressive activities in the skin. However, the regulatory effect of α-MSH is not completely clear in cutaneous innate immunity. In this study, we investigate the functional regulation of α-MSH in TLR2-mediated inflammatory responses in normal human keratinocytes (HKs). α-MSH pretreatment down-regulated the Staphylococcus aureus LTA-induced expression of both TLR2 and IL-8 as well as NF-κB nuclear translocation in HK cells. The inhibitory effect of α-MSH was blocked by agouti signaling protein (ASP), an α-MSH receptor-1 antagonist. To investigate the mechanism of this response in more detail, siRNA of IRAK-M, a negative regulator of TLR signaling, was utilized in these studies. The α-MSH suppressive effect on IL-8 production and NF-κB transactivation was inhibited by IRAK-M siRNA transfection in HK cells. These results indicate that α-MSH is capable of suppressing keratinocyte TLR2-mediated inflammatory responses induced by S. aureus-LTA, thus demonstrating another novel immunomodulatory activity of α-MSH in normal human keratinocytes. PMID:26309029

  16. Neuroendorine and Epigentic Mechanisms Subserving Autonomic Imbalance and HPA Dysfunction in the Metabolic Syndrome.

    PubMed

    Lemche, Erwin; Chaban, Oleg S; Lemche, Alexandra V

    2016-01-01

    Impact of environmental stress upon pathophysiology of the metabolic syndrome (MetS) has been substantiated by epidemiological, psychophysiological, and endocrinological studies. This review discusses recent advances in the understanding of causative roles of nutritional factors, sympathomedullo-adrenal (SMA) and hypothalamic-pituitary adrenocortical (HPA) axes, and adipose tissue chronic low-grade inflammation processes in MetS. Disturbances in the neuroendocrine systems for leptin, melanocortin, and neuropeptide Y (NPY)/agouti-related protein systems have been found resulting directly in MetS-like conditions. The review identifies candidate risk genes from factors shown critical for the functioning of each of these neuroendocrine signaling cascades. In its meta-analytic part, recent studies in epigenetic modification (histone methylation, acetylation, phosphorylation, ubiquitination) and posttranscriptional gene regulation by microRNAs are evaluated. Several studies suggest modification mechanisms of early life stress (ELS) and diet-induced obesity (DIO) programming in the hypothalamic regions with populations of POMC-expressing neurons. Epigenetic modifications were found in cortisol (here HSD11B1 expression), melanocortin, leptin, NPY, and adiponectin genes. With respect to adiposity genes, epigenetic modifications were documented for fat mass gene cluster APOA1/C3/A4/A5, and the lipolysis gene LIPE. With regard to inflammatory, immune and subcellular metabolism, PPARG, NKBF1, TNFA, TCF7C2, and those genes expressing cytochrome P450 family enzymes involved in steroidogenesis and in hepatic lipoproteins were documented for epigenetic modifications. PMID:27147943

  17. Common commercial cosmetic products induce arthritis in the DA rat.

    PubMed Central

    Sverdrup, B; Klareskog, L; Kleinau, S

    1998-01-01

    Many different agents, including mineral oil and silicone, have the capacity to act as immunological adjuvants, i.e., they can contribute to the activation of the immune system. Some adjuvants, including mineral oil, are known to induce arthritis in certain strains of rats after intradermal injection or percutaneous application. The aim of this study was to determine if common commercial cosmetic products containing mineral oil could induce arthritis in the highly susceptible DA (Dark Agouti) rat. Intradermal injection of five out of eight assayed cosmetic products without further additives resulted in arthritis with synovitis. One of the products induced a very aggressive arthritis, which had declined after 5-9 weeks. When this product was also assayed for arthritogenicity upon percutaneous administration, it induced a mild and transient arthritis in 5 out of 10 DA rats, whereas control animals showed no clinical signs of joint involvement. No arthritic reaction was seen in rats after peroral feeding with the most arthritogenic product or by intravaginal application of Freund's adjuvants. Silicone gel implants in DA rats did not cause arthritis. We conclude that mineral oils included in common commercially available products retain their adjuvant properties and are arthritogenic in the presently investigated arthritis-prone rat strain. There is yet no evidence that mineral oils present in cosmetics may contribute to arthritis in humans, but we suggest that this question should be subject to further investigation. Images Figure 1 Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4 Figure 5 Figure 6 PMID:9417771

  18. Donor Heart Treatment With COMP-Ang1 Limits Ischemia-Reperfusion Injury and Rejection of Cardiac Allografts.

    PubMed

    Syrjälä, S O; Nykänen, A I; Tuuminen, R; Raissadati, A; Keränen, M A I; Arnaudova, R; Krebs, R; Koh, G Y; Alitalo, K; Lemström, K B

    2015-08-01

    The major cause of death during the first year after heart transplantation is primary graft dysfunction due to preservation and ischemia-reperfusion injury (IRI). Angiopoietin-1 is a Tie2 receptor-binding paracrine growth factor with anti-inflammatory properties and indispensable roles in vascular development and stability. We used a stable variant of angiopoietin-1 (COMP-Ang1) to test whether ex vivo intracoronary treatment with a single dose of COMP-Ang1 in donor Dark Agouti rat heart subjected to 4-h cold ischemia would prevent microvascular dysfunction and inflammatory responses in the fully allogeneic recipient Wistar Furth rat. COMP-Ang1 reduced endothelial cell-cell junction disruption of the donor heart in transmission electron microscopy during 4-h cold ischemia, improved myocardial reflow, and reduced microvascular leakage and cardiomyocyte injury of transplanted allografts during IRI. Concurrently, the treatment reduced expression of danger signals, dendritic cell maturation markers, endothelial cell adhesion molecule VCAM-1 and RhoA/Rho-associated protein kinase activation and the influx of macrophages and neutrophils. Furthermore, COMP-Ang1 treatment provided sustained anti-inflammatory effects during acute rejection and prevented the development of cardiac fibrosis and allograft vasculopathy. These results suggest donor heart treatment with COMP-Ang1 having important clinical implications in the prevention of primary and subsequent long-term injury and dysfunction in cardiac allografts. PMID:25932532

  19. A 6-bp deletion in exon 8 and two mutations in introns of TYRP1 are associated with blond coat color in Liangshan pigs.

    PubMed

    Wu, Xiaoqian; Zhang, Yi; Shen, Linyuan; Du, Jingjing; Luo, Jia; Liu, Chendong; Pu, Qiang; Yang, Runlin; Li, Xuewei; Bai, Lin; Tang, Guoqing; Zhang, Shunhua; Zhu, Li

    2016-03-01

    Melanocortin receptor 1 (MC1R), Agouti signaling protein (ASIP), and Tyrosinase-related protein 1 (TYRP1) are reported critical genes that regulate pheomelanin and eumelanin synthesis in mammals. Liangshan pig is a special Chinese indigenous pig breed with two completely different coat colors, solid black and blond. In this study, we detected polymorphisms of the above three genes and assessed the relationships between the variations and coat color phenotypes in Liangshan pigs. The findings revealed that the blond phenotype of Liangshan pig was related to dominant mutations in TYRP1, but not related to mutations in MC1R or ASIP. We found three closely linked mutations in TYRP1, g.8406G>A in intron 4, g.11100A>G in intron 5, and g.17599_17604del in exon 8, that were completely associated with blond coat color in Liangshan pigs. Further analysis revealed that a 6-bp deletion mutation resulted in deletion of Met and Gly residues at positions 495 and 496 in TYRP1 protein, and altered the structure of transmembrane domain of TYRP1. Together, our findings indicated that these three mutations in TYRP1 cause the blond phenotype in Liangshan pigs. PMID:26680103

  20. Understanding how discrete populations of hypothalamic neurons orchestrate complicated behavioral states

    PubMed Central

    Graebner, Allison K.; Iyer, Manasi; Carter, Matthew E.

    2015-01-01

    A major question in systems neuroscience is how a single population of neurons can interact with the rest of the brain to orchestrate complex behavioral states. The hypothalamus contains many such discrete neuronal populations that individually regulate arousal, feeding, and drinking. For example, hypothalamic neurons that express hypocretin (Hcrt) neuropeptides can sense homeostatic and metabolic factors affecting wakefulness and orchestrate organismal arousal. Neurons that express agouti-related protein (AgRP) can sense the metabolic needs of the body and orchestrate a state of hunger. The organum vasculosum of the lamina terminalis (OVLT) can detect the hypertonicity of blood and orchestrate a state of thirst. Each hypothalamic population is sufficient to generate complicated behavioral states through the combined efforts of distinct efferent projections. The principal challenge to understanding these brain systems is therefore to determine the individual roles of each downstream projection for each behavioral state. In recent years, the development and application of temporally precise, genetically encoded tools has greatly improved our understanding of the structure and function of these neural systems. This review will survey recent advances in our understanding of how these individual hypothalamic populations can orchestrate complicated behavioral states due to the combined efforts of individual downstream projections. PMID:26300745

  1. Plasticity of the Melanocortin System: Determinants and Possible Consequences on Food Intake

    PubMed Central

    Nuzzaci, Danaé; Laderrière, Amélie; Lemoine, Aleth; Nédélec, Emmanuelle; Pénicaud, Luc; Rigault, Caroline; Benani, Alexandre

    2015-01-01

    The melanocortin system is one of the most important neuronal pathways involved in the regulation of food intake and is probably the best characterized. Agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and proopiomelanocortin (POMC) expressing neurons located in the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus are the key elements of this system. These two neuronal populations are sensitive to circulating molecules and receive many excitatory and inhibitory inputs from various brain areas. According to sensory and metabolic information they integrate, these neurons control different aspects of feeding behavior and orchestrate autonomic responses aimed at maintaining energy homeostasis. Interestingly, composition and abundance of pre-synaptic inputs onto arcuate AgRP and POMC neurons vary in the adult hypothalamus in response to changes in the metabolic state, a phenomenon that can be recapitulated by treatment with hormones, such as leptin or ghrelin. As described in other neuroendrocrine systems, glia might be determinant to shift the synaptic configuration of AgRP and POMC neurons. Here, we discuss the physiological outcome of the synaptic plasticity of the melanocortin system, and more particularly its contribution to the control of energy balance. The discovery of this attribute has changed how we view obesity and related disorders, and opens new perspectives for their management. PMID:26441833

  2. Effect of fasting on cocaine-amphetamine-regulated transcript, neuropeptide Y, and leptin receptor expression in the non-human primate hypothalamus.

    PubMed

    Van Vugt, Dean A; Lujan, Marla E; Froats, Mark; Krzemien, Alicja; Couceyro, Pastor R; Reid, Robert L

    2006-01-01

    Leptin is a cytokine produced by white adipose tissue that circulates in direct proportion to adiposity and is an important signal of energy balance. Leptin inhibits food intake in rodents by inhibiting the orexigenic neuropetides neuropeptide Y (NPY) and agouti regulated peptide (AgRP) and stimulating the anorexigenic neuropeptides alpha-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (alpha-MSH) and cocaine-amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART). In order to extend our understanding of neuroendocrine regulation of appetite in the primate, we determined the effect of a metabolic challenge on CART, NPY, and leptin receptor (Ob-R) messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA) in the nonhuman primate (NHP) hypothalamus. Ten adult female rhesus monkeys were either maintained on a regular diet or fasted for two days before euthanasia. CART, NPY, and Ob-R mRNA were measured by in situ hybridization histochemistry (ISHH). A 2-day fast decreased CART expression in the ARC, increased NPY gene expression in the supraoptic nucleus (SON) and paraventricular nucleus (PVN), and increased Ob-R expression in the ventromedial nucleus (VMN). This is the first report that fasting inhibits CART expression and stimulates Ob-R expression in monkeys. Increased NPY expression in the SON and PVN, but not the ARC of fasted monkeys also is novel. With some exceptions, our observations are confirmatory of findings in rodent studies. Similarities in the neuroendocrine responses to a metabolic challenge in monkeys and rodents support extending existing hypotheses of neuroendocrine control of energy homeostasis to primates. PMID:17124379

  3. Goldfish Leptin-AI and Leptin-AII: Function and Central Mechanism in Feeding Control

    PubMed Central

    Yan, Ai-Fen; Chen, Ting; Chen, Shuang; Ren, Chun-Hua; Hu, Chao-Qun; Cai, Yi-Ming; Liu, Fang; Tang, Dong-Sheng

    2016-01-01

    In mammals, leptin is a peripheral satiety factor that inhibits feeding by regulating a variety of appetite-related hormones in the brain. However, most of the previous studies examining leptin in fish feeding were performed with mammalian leptins, which share very low sequence homologies with fish leptins. To elucidate the function and mechanism of endogenous fish leptins in feeding regulation, recombinant goldfish leptin-AI and leptin-AII were expressed in methylotrophic yeast and purified by immobilized metal ion affinity chromatography (IMAC). By intraperitoneal (IP) injection, both leptin-AI and leptin-AII were shown to inhibit the feeding behavior and to reduce the food consumption of goldfish in 2 h. In addition, co-treatment of leptin-AI or leptin-AII could block the feeding behavior and reduce the food consumption induced by neuropeptide Y (NPY) injection. High levels of leptin receptor (lepR) mRNA were detected in the hypothalamus, telencephalon, optic tectum and cerebellum of the goldfish brain. The appetite inhibitory effects of leptins were mediated by downregulating the mRNA levels of orexigenic NPY, agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and orexin and upregulating the mRNA levels of anorexigenic cocaine-amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART), cholecystokinin (CCK), melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH) and proopiomelanocortin (POMC) in different areas of the goldfish brain. Our study, as a whole, provides new insights into the functions and mechanisms of leptins in appetite control in a fish model. PMID:27249000

  4. Eumelanin- and pheomelanin-based colour advertise resistance to oxidative stress in opposite ways.

    PubMed

    Roulin, A; Almasi, B; Meichtry-Stier, K S; Jenni, L

    2011-10-01

    The control mechanisms and information content of melanin-based colourations are still debated among evolutionary biologists. Recent hypotheses contend that molecules involved in melanogenesis alter other physiological processes, thereby generating covariation between melanin-based colouration and other phenotypic attributes. Interestingly, several molecules such as agouti and glutathione that trigger the production of reddish-brown pheomelanin have an inhibitory effect on the production of black/grey eumelanin, whereas other hormones, such as melanocortins, have the opposite effect. We therefore propose the hypothesis that phenotypic traits positively correlated with the degree of eumelanin-based colouration may be negatively correlated with the degree of pheomelanin-based colouration, or vice versa. Given the role played by the melanocortin system and glutathione on melanogenesis and resistance to oxidative stress, we examined the prediction that resistance to oxidative stress is positively correlated with the degree of black colouration but negatively with the degree of reddish colouration. Using the barn owl (Tyto alba) as a model organism, we swapped eggs between randomly chosen nests to allocate genotypes randomly among environments and then we measured resistance to oxidative stress using the KRL assay in nestlings raised by foster parents. As predicted, the degree of black and reddish pigmentations was positively and negatively correlated, respectively, with resistance to oxidative stress. Our results reveal that eumelanin- and pheomelanin-based colourations can be redundant signals of resistance to oxidative stress. PMID:21745253

  5. Low susceptibility to N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea-induced transplacental carcinogenesis in Long-Evans Cinnamon (LEC) rats.

    PubMed

    Tsuchigauchi, Takeshi; Takahashi, Tetsuyuki; Ohnishi, Takamasa; Ogawa, Hirohisa; Bando, Yoshimi; Uehara, Hisanori; Takizawa, Tamotsu; Kaneda, Shinya; Nakai, Tokiko; Shiota, Hiroshi; Izumi, Keisuke

    2009-08-01

    The Long-Evans Cinnamon (LEC) rat, an animal model of Wilson's disease, is resistant to a variety of chemical carcinogenesis except liver and colon. In the present study, N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea (ENU)-induced transplacental carcinogenesis was examined in male and female LEC, Long-Evans Agouti (LEA), a sibling line of the LEC rat, and F344 rats (n=21). ENU was administered to pregnant rats as a single s.c. injection at a dose of 60 mg/kg body weight on the 17th day after conception. Cerebral/spinal gliomas and trigeminal/spinal nerve schwannomas developed in both LEA and F344 rats at 30 weeks of age, but no nervous system tumors developed in LEC rats, the difference being statistically significant. Lung adenomas also developed in LEA and F344 rats, but not in LEC rats. Semiquantitative RT-PCR demonstrated that metallothionein (MT)1a, MT2 and O(6)-methylguanine-DNA methyltransferase (MGMT) mRNA levels in the liver of LEC rats were higher than those in F344 and LEA rats. In addition, Western blot analysis showed that MT (MT1 plus MT2) in the liver of LEC rats was also higher than that in other strains. Present results suggest that high levels of MT and/or MGMT contribute to the resistance to nitrosamine-induced carcinogenesis in LEC rats. PMID:19763020

  6. Effects of food deprivation on the hypothalamic feeding-regulating peptides gene expressions in serotonin depleted rats.

    PubMed

    Yoshimura, Mitsuhiro; Hagimoto, Marina; Matsuura, Takanori; Ohkubo, Junichi; Ohno, Motoko; Maruyama, Takashi; Ishikura, Toru; Hashimoto, Hirofumi; Kakuma, Tetsuya; Yoshimatsu, Hironobu; Terawaki, Kiyoshi; Uezono, Yasuhito; Toyohira, Yumiko; Yanagihara, Nobuyuki; Ueta, Yoichi

    2014-03-01

    We examined the effects of serotonin (5-HT) depletion induced by peripheral injection of 5-HT synthesis inhibitor p-chlorophenylalanine (PCPA) on the expression of feeding-regulating peptides expressions by using in situ hybridization histochemistry in adult male Wistar rats. PCPA pretreatment had no significant effect on basal levels of oxytocin, corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH), thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TRH), pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC), cocaine and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART), neuropeptide-Y (NPY), agouti-related protein (AgRP), melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH) or orexin in the hypothalamus. Food deprivation for 48 h caused a significant decrease in CRH, TRH, POMC, and CART, and a significant increase in NPY, AgRP and MCH. After PCPA treatment, POMC and CART did not decrease despite food deprivation. NPY was significantly increased by food deprivation with PCPA, but was attenuated compared to food deprivation without PCPA. These results suggest that the serotonergic system in the hypothalamus may be involved in the gene expression of POMC, CART, and NPY related to feeding behavior. PMID:24162946

  7. The odor of Osmanthus fragrans attenuates food intake.

    PubMed

    Yamamoto, Takashi; Inui, Tadashi; Tsuji, Tadataka

    2013-01-01

    Odors have been shown to exert an influence on various physiological and behavioral activities. However, little is known whether or not odor stimulation directly affects the levels of feeding-related neuropeptides. Here we show that the neural transmission by Osmanthus fragrans (OSM) decreased the mRNA expression of orexigenic neuropeptides, such as agouti-related protein, neuropeptide Y, melanin-concentrating hormone and prepro-orexin, while increased anorexigenic neuropeptides, such as cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript and proopiomelanocortin in rats. The decreased number of orexin-immunoreactive neurons in the hypothalamus coincided well with the OSM-induced decreases in the expression of prepro-orexin mRNA. This study demonstrates that the OSM odor, which is known to have a mild sedative effect, decreases the motivation to eat, food intake and body weight, accompanied by sluggish masticatory movements. The data suggest that these effects are due to suppression of orexigenic neuropeptides and activation of anorexigenic neuropeptides in the hypothalamus. PMID:23519146

  8. Effects of risperidone treatment on the expression of hypothalamic neuropeptide in appetite regulation in Wistar rats.

    PubMed

    Kursungoz, Canan; Ak, Mehmet; Yanik, Tulin

    2015-01-30

    Although the use of atypical antipsychotic drugs has been successful in the treatment of schizophrenia, they can cause some complications in the long-term use, including weight gain. Patients using these drugs tend to disrupt treatment primarily due to side effects. The atypical antipsychotic mechanism of action regulates a number of highly disrupted neurotransmitter pathways in the brains of psychotic patients but may also cause impairment of neurohormonal pathways in different brain areas. In this study, we investigated the circulating levels of hypothalamic neurohormones, which are related to appetite regulation; neuropeptide Y (NPY); alpha melanocyte stimulating hormone (α-MSH); cocaine and amphetamine regulated transcript (CART); agouti-related peptide (AgRP); and leptin in male Wistar rats, which were treated with risperidone, a serotonin antagonist, for four weeks. Alterations in the mRNA expression levels of these candidate genes in the hypothalamus were also analyzed. We hypothesized that risperidone treatment might alter both hypothalamic and circulating levels of neuropeptides through serotonergic antagonism, resulting in weight gain. Gene expression studies revealed that the mRNA expression levels of proopiomelanocortin (POMC), AgRP, and NPY decreased as well as their plasma levels, except for NPY. Unexpectedly, CART mRNA levels increased when their plasma levels decreased. Because POMC neurons express the serotonin receptor (5HT2C), the serotonergic antagonism of risperidone on POMC neurons may cause an increase in appetite and thus increase food consumption even in a short-term trial in rats. PMID:25449893

  9. Defining the contribution of MC1R physiological ligands to ATR phosphorylation at Ser435, a predictor of DNA repair in melanocytes

    PubMed Central

    Jarrett, Stuart G.; Wolf Horrell, Erin M.; Boulanger, Mary C.; D’Orazio, John A.

    2015-01-01

    The melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R), a GS-coupled receptor that signals through cAMP and PKA, regulates pigmentation, adaptive tanning, and melanoma resistance. MC1R-cAMP signaling promotes PKA-mediated phosphorylation of ataxia telangiectasia and rad3-related (ATR) at Ser435 (ATR-pS435), a modification that enhances nucleotide excision repair (NER) by facilitating recruitment of the XPA protein to sites of UV-induced DNA damage. High-throughput methods were developed to quantify ATR-pS435, measure XPA-photodamage interactions and assess NER function. We report that melanocyte stimulating hormone (α-MSH) or adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) induce ATR-pS435, enhance XPA’s association with UV-damaged DNA and optimize melanocytic NER. In contrast, MC1R antagonists agouti signaling protein (ASIP) or human β-defensin 3 (HBD3) interfere with ATR-pS435 generation, impair the XPA-DNA interaction and reduce DNA repair. Although ASIP and HBD3 each blocked α-MSH-mediated induction of the signaling pathway, only ASIP depleted basal ATR-pS435. Our findings confirm that ASIP diminishes agonist-independent MC1R basal signaling whereas HBD3 is a neutral MC1R antagonist that blocks activation by melanocortins. Furthermore, our data suggest that ATR-pS435 may be a useful biomarker for the DNA repair-deficient MC1R phenotype. PMID:26168232

  10. CRFR1 in AgRP Neurons Modulates Sympathetic Nervous System Activity to Adapt to Cold Stress and Fasting.

    PubMed

    Kuperman, Yael; Weiss, Meira; Dine, Julien; Staikin, Katy; Golani, Ofra; Ramot, Assaf; Nahum, Tali; Kühne, Claudia; Shemesh, Yair; Wurst, Wolfgang; Harmelin, Alon; Deussing, Jan M; Eder, Matthias; Chen, Alon

    2016-06-14

    Signaling by the corticotropin-releasing factor receptor type 1 (CRFR1) plays an important role in mediating the autonomic response to stressful challenges. Multiple hypothalamic nuclei regulate sympathetic outflow. Although CRFR1 is highly expressed in the arcuate nucleus (Arc) of the hypothalamus, the identity of these neurons and the role of CRFR1 here are presently unknown. Our studies show that nearly half of Arc-CRFR1 neurons coexpress agouti-related peptide (AgRP), half of which originate from POMC precursors. Arc-CRFR1 neurons are innervated by CRF neurons in the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus, and CRF application decreases AgRP(+)CRFR1(+) neurons' excitability. Despite similar anatomy in both sexes, only female mice selectively lacking CRFR1 in AgRP neurons showed a maladaptive thermogenic response to cold and reduced hepatic glucose production during fasting. Thus, CRFR1, in a subset of AgRP neurons, plays a regulatory role that enables appropriate sympathetic nervous system activation and consequently protects the organism from hypothermia and hypoglycemia. PMID:27211900

  11. Chemical identity of hypothalamic neurons engaged by leptin in reproductive control.

    PubMed

    Ratra, Dhirender V; Elias, Carol F

    2014-11-01

    The adipocyte-derived hormone leptin plays a critical role as a metabolic cue for the reproductive system. Conditions of low leptin levels observed in negative energy balance and loss-of-function mutations of leptin or leptin receptor genes are characterized by decreased fertility. In recent years, advances have been made for identifying possible hypothalamic neurons relaying leptin's neuroendocrine control of reproductive function. Studies from different laboratories have demonstrated that leptin action in the hypothalamo-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis is exerted via hypothalamic interneurons regulating gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) cells, oppose to direct action on GnRH neurons. Following this observation, studies focused on identifying leptin responsive interneurons. Using a Cre-loxP system to re-express or delete the leptin receptor long form (LepRb) from kisspeptin neurons, our laboratory found that leptin's action on kiss1 cells is neither required nor sufficient for leptin's role in reproductive function. Endogenous re-expression of LepRb however, in glutamatergic neurons of the ventral premammilary nucleus (PMV) or ablation of agouti-related protein (AgRP) neurons from leptin signaling-deficient mice are both sufficient to induce puberty and improve fertility. Recent studies have also shown that leptin action in first order GABAergic neurons is required for fertility. Together, these studies begin to delineate key neuronal populations involved in leptin's action in reproduction. In this review, we discuss recent advances made in the field and highlight the questions yet to be answered. PMID:24915437

  12. Melanocortin-1 receptor-mediated signalling pathways activated by NDP-MSH and HBD3 ligands

    PubMed Central

    Beaumont, Kimberley A.; Smit, Darren J.; Liu, Yan Yan; Chai, Eric; Patel, Mira P.; Millhauser, Glenn L.; Smith, Jennifer J.; Alewood, Paul F.; Sturm, Richard A.

    2014-01-01

    Summary Binding of melanocortin peptide agonists to the melanocortin-1 receptor of melanocytes results in eumelanin production, whereas binding of the agouti signalling protein inverse agonist results in pheomelanin synthesis. Recently, a novel melanocortin-1 receptor ligand was reported. A β-defensin gene mutation was found to beresponsible for black coat colour in domestic dogs. Notably, the human equivalent, β-defensin 3, was found to bind with high affinity to the melanocortin-1 receptor; however, the action of β-defensin as an agonist or antagonist was unknown. Here, we use in vitro assays to show that β-defensin 3 is able to act as a weak partial agonist for cAMP signalling in human embryonic kidney (HEK) cells expressing human melanocortin-1receptor. β-defensin 3 is also able to activate MAPK signalling in HEK cells stably expressing either wild type or variant melanocortin-1 receptors. We suggest that β-defensin 3 may be a novel melanocortin-1 receptor agonist involved in regulating melanocyte responses in humans. PMID:22364200

  13. High-fat diet-induced met-hemoglobin formation in rats prone (WOKW) or resistant (DA) to the metabolic syndrome: effect of CoQ10 supplementation.

    PubMed

    Orlando, Patrick; Silvestri, Sonia; Brugè, Francesca; Tiano, Luca; Kloting, Ingrid; Falcioni, Giancarlo; Polidori, Carlo

    2014-01-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of a high-fat diet (HFD) on oxidative indexes in WistarOttawaKarlsburg W (WOKW) rats used as a model of metabolic syndrome in comparison with Dark Agouti (DA) rats used as a control strain. This syndrome is defined by the occurrence of two or more risk factors including obesity, hypertension, dyslipidemia, and insulin resistance. Forty rats were used in the study and the effect of HFD was evaluated in terms of body weight and both hemoglobin and CoQ oxidative status. Moreover, 16 rats (8 of each strain) were supplemented with 3 mg/100 g b.w. of CoQ10 for 1 month in view of its beneficial properties in cardiovascular disease due to its antioxidant activity in the lipid environment. HFD promoted an increase in body weight, in particular in WOKW males, and in the methemoglobin (met-Hb) index in both strains. Moreover, HFD promoted endogenous CoQ10 oxidation. CoQ10 supplementation was able to efficiently counteract the HFD pro-oxidant effects, preventing met-Hb formation and CoQ oxidation. PMID:25428841

  14. Transgenic n-3 PUFAs enrichment leads to weight loss via modulating neuropeptides in hypothalamus.

    PubMed

    Ma, Shuangshuang; Ge, Yinlin; Gai, Xiaoying; Xue, Meilan; Li, Ning; Kang, Jingxuan; Wan, Jianbo; Zhang, Jinyu

    2016-01-12

    Body weight is related to fat mass, which is associated with obesity. Our study explored the effect of fat-1 gene on body weight in fat-1 transgenic mice. In present study, we observed that the weight/length ratio of fat-1 transgenic mice was lower than that of wild-type mice. The serum levels of triglycerides (TG), cholesterol (CT), high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-c), low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-c) and blood glucose (BG) in fat-1 transgenic mice were all decreased. The weights of peri-bowels fat, perirenal fat and peri-testicular fat in fat-1 transgenic mice were reduced. We hypothesized that increase of n-3 PUFAs might alter the expression of hypothalamic neuropeptide genes and lead to loss of body weight in fat-1 transgenic mice. Therefore, we measured mRNA levels of appetite neuropeptides, Neuropeptide Y (NPY), Agouti-related peptides (AgRP), Proopiomelanocortin (POMC), Cocaine and amphetamine regulated transcript (CART), ghrelin and nesfatin-1 in hypothalamus by real-time PCR. Compared with wild-type mice, the mRNA levels of CART, POMC and ghrelin were higher, while the mRNA levels of NPY, AgRP and nesfatin-1 were lower in fat-1 transgenic mice. The results indicate that fat-1 gene or n-3 PUFAs participates in regulation of body weight, and the mechanism of this phenomenon involves the expression of appetite neuropeptides and lipoproteins in fat-1 transgenic mice. PMID:26610903

  15. Effects of Pregnane Glycosides on Food Intake Depend on Stimulation of the Melanocortin Pathway and BDNF in an Animal Model

    PubMed Central

    Komarnytsky, Slavko; Esposito, Debora; Rathinasabapathy, Thirumurugan; Poulev, Alexander; Raskin, Ilya

    2013-01-01

    Pregnane glycosides appear to modulate food intake by possibly affecting the hypothalamic feeding circuits; however, the mechanisms of the appetite-regulating effect of pregnane glycosides remain obscure. Here, we show that pregnane glycoside-enriched extracts from swamp milkweed Asclepias incarnata at 25–100 mg/kg daily attenuated food intake (up to 47.1 ± 8.5% less than controls) and body weight gain in rats (10% for males and 9% for females, respectively) by activating melanocortin signaling and inhibiting gastric emptying. The major milkweed pregnane glycoside, ikemagenin, exerted its appetite-regulating effect by decreasing levels of agouti-related protein (0.6-fold) but not NPY satiety peptides. Ikemagenin treatment also increased secretion of brain-derived neurotropic factor (BDNF) downstream of melanocortin receptors in the hypothalamus (1.4-fold) and in the C6 rat glioma cell culture in vitro (up to 6-fold). These results support the multimodal effects of pregnane glycosides on feeding regulation, which depends on the activity of the melanocortin signaling pathway and BDNF. PMID:23308358

  16. The Alpha-Melanocyte-Stimulating Hormone Suppresses TLR2-Mediated Functional Responses through IRAK-M in Normal Human Keratinocytes.

    PubMed

    Ryu, Sunhyo; Johnson, Andrew; Park, Yoonkyung; Kim, Beomjoon; Norris, David; Armstrong, Cheryl A; Song, Peter I

    2015-01-01

    Alpha-melanocyte stimulating hormone (α-MSH) is a highly conserved 13-aa neuropeptide derived from pro-opiomelanocortin by post-translational processing, which has been reported to exhibit potent anti-inflammatory activity and a wide range of immunosuppressive activities in the skin. However, the regulatory effect of α-MSH is not completely clear in cutaneous innate immunity. In this study, we investigate the functional regulation of α-MSH in TLR2-mediated inflammatory responses in normal human keratinocytes (HKs). α-MSH pretreatment down-regulated the Staphylococcus aureus LTA-induced expression of both TLR2 and IL-8 as well as NF-κB nuclear translocation in HK cells. The inhibitory effect of α-MSH was blocked by agouti signaling protein (ASP), an α-MSH receptor-1 antagonist. To investigate the mechanism of this response in more detail, siRNA of IRAK-M, a negative regulator of TLR signaling, was utilized in these studies. The α-MSH suppressive effect on IL-8 production and NF-κB transactivation was inhibited by IRAK-M siRNA transfection in HK cells. These results indicate that α-MSH is capable of suppressing keratinocyte TLR2-mediated inflammatory responses induced by S. aureus-LTA, thus demonstrating another novel immunomodulatory activity of α-MSH in normal human keratinocytes. PMID:26309029

  17. Developmental Changes in Synaptic Distribution in Arcuate Nucleus Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Kirigiti, Melissa A.; Baquero, Karalee C.; Lee, Shin J.; Smith, M. Susan; Grove, Kevin L.

    2015-01-01

    Neurons coexpressing neuropeptide Y, agouti-related peptide, and GABA (NAG) play an important role in ingestive behavior and are located in the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus. NAG neurons receive both GABAergic and glutamatergic synaptic inputs, however, the developmental time course of synaptic input organization of NAG neurons in mice is unknown. In this study, we show that these neurons have low numbers of GABAergic synapses and that GABA is inhibitory to NAG neurons during early postnatal period. In contrast, glutamatergic inputs onto NAG neurons are relatively abundant by P13 and are comparatively similar to the levels observed in the adult. As mice reach adulthood (9–10 weeks), GABAergic tone onto NAG neurons increases. At this age, NAG neurons received similar numbers of inhibitory and EPSCs. To further differentiate age-associated changes in synaptic distribution, 17- to 18-week-old lean and diet-induced obesity (DIO) mice were studied. Surprisingly, NAG neurons from lean adult mice exhibit a reduction in the GABAergic synapses compared with younger adults. Conversely, DIO mice display reductions in the number of GABAergic and glutamatergic inputs onto NAG neurons. Based on these experiments, we propose that synaptic distribution in NAG neurons is continuously restructuring throughout development to accommodate the animals' energy requirements. PMID:26041922

  18. Changes in mRNA expression of arcuate nucleus appetite-regulating peptides during lactation in rats

    PubMed Central

    Suzuki, Yoshihiro; Nakahara, Keiko; Maruyama, Keisuke; Okame, Rieko; Ensho, Takuya; Inoue, Yoshiyuki; Murakami, Noboru

    2014-01-01

    The contribution of hypothalamic appetite-regulating peptides to further hyperphagia accompanying the course of lactation in rats was investigated by using PCR array and real-time PCR. Furthermore, changes in the mRNA expression for appetite-regulating peptides in the hypothalamic arcuate nucleus (ARC) were analyzed at all stages of pregnancy and lactation, and also after weaning. Food intake was significantly higher during pregnancy, lactation, and after weaning than during non-lactation periods. During lactation, ARC expression of mRNAs for agouti-related protein (AgRP) and peptide YY was increased, whereas that of mRNAs for proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and cholecystokinin (CCK) was decreased, in comparison with non-lactation periods. The increase in AgRP mRNA expression during lactation was especially marked. The plasma level of leptin was significantly decreased during the course of lactation, whereas that of acyl-ghrelin was unchanged. In addition, food intake was negatively correlated with the plasma leptin level during lactation. This study has clarified synchronous changes in the expression of many appetite-regulating peptides in ARC of rats during lactation. Our results suggest that hyperphagia during lactation in rats is caused by decreases in POMC and CCK expression and increases in AgRP expression in ARC, the latter being most notable. Together with the decrease in the blood leptin level, such changes in mRNA expression may explain the further hyperphagia accompanying the course of lactation. PMID:24299740

  19. Long-term orexigenic effects of AgRP-(83---132) involve mechanisms other than melanocortin receptor blockade.

    PubMed

    Hagan, M M; Rushing, P A; Pritchard, L M; Schwartz, M W; Strack, A M; Van Der Ploeg, L H; Woods, S C; Seeley, R J

    2000-07-01

    Overexpression of agouti-related peptide (AgRP), an endogenous melanocortin (MC) 3 and 4 receptor antagonist (MC3/4-R), causes obesity. Exogenous AgRP-(83---132) increases food intake, but its duration and mode of action are unknown. We report herein that doses as low as 10 pmol can have a potent effect on food intake of rats over a 24-h period after intracerebroventricular injection. Additionally, a single third ventricular dose as low as 100 pmol in rats produces a robust increase in food intake that persists for an entire week. AgRP-(83---132) completely blocks the anorectic effect of MTII (MC3/4-R agonist), given simultaneously, consistent with a competitive antagonist action. However, when given 24 h prior to MTII, AgRP-(83---132) is ineffective at reversing the anorectic effects of the agonist. These results support a critical role of MC tone in limiting food intake and indicate that the orexigenic effects of AgRP-(83---132) are initially mediated by competitive antagonism at MC receptors but are sustained by alternate mechanisms. PMID:10896863

  20. The effect of physical exercise on orexigenic and anorexigenic peptides and its role on long-term feeding control.

    PubMed

    Benite-Ribeiro, Sandra Aparecida; Putt, David A; Santos, Júlia Matzenbacher

    2016-08-01

    Over the past decades, life-styles changing have led to exacerbated food and caloric intake and a reduction in energy expenditure. Obesity, main outcome of these changes, increases the risk for developing type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and metabolic syndrome, the leading cause of death in adult and middle age population. Body weight and energy homeostasis are maintained via complex interactions between orexigenic and anorexigenic neuropeptides that take place predominantly in the hypothalamus. Overeating may disrupt the mechanisms of feeding control, by decreasing the expression of proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and α-melanocyte stimulating hormone (α-MSH) and increasing orexigenic neuropeptide Y (NPY) and agouti-related peptide (AgRP), which leads to a disturbance in appetite control and energy balance. Studies have shown that regular physical exercise might decrease body-weight, food intake and improve the metabolic profile, however until the currently there is no consensus about its effects on the expression of orexigenic/anorexigenic neuropeptides expression. Therefore, we propose that the type and length of physical exercise affect POMC/αMSH and NPY/AgRP systems differently and plays an important role in feeding behavior. Moreover, based on the present reports, we hypothesize that increased POMC/αMSH overcome NPY/AgRP expression decreasing food intake in long term physical exercise and that results in amelioration of several conditions related to overweight and obesity. PMID:27372853

  1. Genetics of Sex-linked yellow in the Syrian hamster.

    PubMed

    Alizadeh, Azita; Hong, Lewis Z; Kaelin, Christopher B; Raudsepp, Terje; Manuel, Hermogenes; Barsh, Gregory S

    2009-04-01

    Alternating patches of black and yellow pigment are a ubiquitous feature of mammalian color variation that contributes to camouflage, species recognition, and morphologic diversity. X-linked determinants of this pattern--recognized by variegation in females but not in males--have been described in the domestic cat as Orange, and in the Syrian hamster as Sex-linked yellow (Sly), but are curiously absent from other vertebrate species. Using a comparative genomic approach, we develop molecular markers and a linkage map for the euchromatic region of the Syrian hamster X chromosome that places Sly in a region homologous to the centromere-proximal region of human Xp. Comparison to analogous work carried out for Orange in domestic cats indicates, surprisingly, that the cat and hamster mutations lie in nonhomologous regions of the X chromosome. We also identify the molecular cause of recessively inherited black coat color in hamsters (historically referred to as nonagouti) as a Cys115Tyr mutation in the Agouti gene. Animals doubly mutant for Sly and nonagouti exhibit a Sly phenotype. Our results indicate that Sly represents a melanocortin pathway component that acts similarly to, but is genetically distinct from, Mc1r and that has implications for understanding both the evolutionary history and the mutational mechanisms of pigment-type switching. PMID:19189957

  2. Melanocortin 1 Receptor: Structure, Function, and Regulation

    PubMed Central

    Wolf Horrell, Erin M.; Boulanger, Mary C.; D’Orazio, John A.

    2016-01-01

    The melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R) is a melanocytic Gs protein coupled receptor that regulates skin pigmentation, UV responses, and melanoma risk. It is a highly polymorphic gene, and loss of function correlates with a fair, UV-sensitive, and melanoma-prone phenotype due to defective epidermal melanization and sub-optimal DNA repair. MC1R signaling, achieved through adenylyl cyclase activation and generation of the second messenger cAMP, is hormonally controlled by the positive agonist melanocortin, the negative agonist agouti signaling protein, and the neutral antagonist β-defensin 3. Activation of cAMP signaling up-regulates melanin production and deposition in the epidermis which functions to limit UV penetration into the skin and enhances nucleotide excision repair (NER), the genomic stability pathway responsible for clearing UV photolesions from DNA to avoid mutagenesis. Herein we review MC1R structure and function and summarize our laboratory’s findings on the molecular mechanisms by which MC1R signaling impacts NER. PMID:27303435

  3. How the Leopard Hides Its Spots: ASIP Mutations and Melanism in Wild Cats

    PubMed Central

    Schneider, Alexsandra; David, Victor A.; Johnson, Warren E.; O'Brien, Stephen J.; Barsh, Gregory S.; Menotti-Raymond, Marilyn; Eizirik, Eduardo

    2012-01-01

    The occurrence of melanism (darkening of the background coloration) is documented in 13 felid species, in some cases reaching high frequencies at the population level. Recent analyses have indicated that it arose multiple times in the Felidae, with three different species exhibiting unique mutations associated with this trait. The causative mutations in the remaining species have so far not been identified, precluding a broader assessment of the evolutionary dynamics of melanism in the Felidae. Among these, the leopard (Panthera pardus) is a particularly important target for research, given the iconic status of the ‘black panther’ and the extremely high frequency of melanism observed in some Asian populations. Another felid species from the same region, the Asian golden cat (Pardofelis temminckii), also exhibits frequent records of melanism in some areas. We have sequenced the coding region of the Agouti Signaling Protein (ASIP) gene in multiple leopard and Asian golden cat individuals, and identified distinct mutations strongly associated with melanism in each of them. The single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) detected among the P. pardus individuals was caused by a nonsense mutation predicted to completely ablate ASIP function. A different SNP was identified in P. temminckii, causing a predicted amino acid change that should also induce loss of function. Our results reveal two additional cases of species-specific mutations implicated in melanism in the Felidae, and indicate that ASIP mutations may play an important role in naturally-occurring coloration polymorphism. PMID:23251368

  4. How the leopard hides its spots: ASIP mutations and melanism in wild cats.

    PubMed

    Schneider, Alexsandra; David, Victor A; Johnson, Warren E; O'Brien, Stephen J; Barsh, Gregory S; Menotti-Raymond, Marilyn; Eizirik, Eduardo

    2012-01-01

    The occurrence of melanism (darkening of the background coloration) is documented in 13 felid species, in some cases reaching high frequencies at the population level. Recent analyses have indicated that it arose multiple times in the Felidae, with three different species exhibiting unique mutations associated with this trait. The causative mutations in the remaining species have so far not been identified, precluding a broader assessment of the evolutionary dynamics of melanism in the Felidae. Among these, the leopard (Panthera pardus) is a particularly important target for research, given the iconic status of the 'black panther' and the extremely high frequency of melanism observed in some Asian populations. Another felid species from the same region, the Asian golden cat (Pardofelis temminckii), also exhibits frequent records of melanism in some areas. We have sequenced the coding region of the Agouti Signaling Protein (ASIP) gene in multiple leopard and Asian golden cat individuals, and identified distinct mutations strongly associated with melanism in each of them. The single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) detected among the P. pardus individuals was caused by a nonsense mutation predicted to completely ablate ASIP function. A different SNP was identified in P. temminckii, causing a predicted amino acid change that should also induce loss of function. Our results reveal two additional cases of species-specific mutations implicated in melanism in the Felidae, and indicate that ASIP mutations may play an important role in naturally-occurring coloration polymorphism. PMID:23251368

  5. Chronic central serotonin depletion attenuates ventilation and body temperature in young but not adult Tph2 knockout rats.

    PubMed

    Kaplan, Kara; Echert, Ashley E; Massat, Ben; Puissant, Madeleine M; Palygin, Oleg; Geurts, Aron M; Hodges, Matthew R

    2016-05-01

    Genetic deletion of brain serotonin (5-HT) neurons in mice leads to ventilatory deficits and increased neonatal mortality during development. However, it is unclear if the loss of the 5-HT neurons or the loss of the neurochemical 5-HT led to the observed physiologic deficits. Herein, we generated a mutant rat model with constitutive central nervous system (CNS) 5-HT depletion by mutation of the tryptophan hydroxylase 2 (Tph2) gene in dark agouti (DA(Tph2-/-)) rats. DA(Tph2-/-) rats lacked TPH immunoreactivity and brain 5-HT but retain dopa decarboxylase-expressing raphe neurons. Mutant rats were also smaller, had relatively high mortality (∼50%), and compared with controls had reduced room air ventilation and body temperatures at specific postnatal ages. In adult rats, breathing at rest and hypoxic and hypercapnic chemoreflexes were unaltered in adult male and female DA(Tph2-/-) rats. Body temperature was also maintained in adult DA(Tph2-/-) rats exposed to 4°C, indicating unaltered ventilatory and/or thermoregulatory control mechanisms. Finally, DA(Tph2-/-) rats treated with the 5-HT precursor 5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) partially restored CNS 5-HT and showed increased ventilation (P < 0.05) at a developmental age when it was otherwise attenuated in the mutants. We conclude that constitutive CNS production of 5-HT is critically important to fundamental homeostatic control systems for breathing and temperature during postnatal development in the rat. PMID:26869713

  6. The acute effect in rats of 3,4-methylenedioxyethamphetamine (MDEA, "eve") on body temperature and long term degeneration of 5-HT neurones in brain: a comparison with MDMA ("ecstasy").

    PubMed

    Colado, M I; Granados, R; O'Shea, E; Esteban, B; Green, A R

    1999-06-01

    Administration of a single dose of the recreationally used drug 3,4-methylenedioxyethamphetamine (MDEA or "eve") to Dark Agouti rats resulted in an acute dose-dependent hyperthermic response. The peak effect and duration of hyperthermia of a dose of MDEA of 35 mg/kg intraperitoneally was similar to a dose of 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA or "ecstasy") of 15 mg/kg intraperitoneally. Seven days later this dose of MDMA produced a marked (approximately 50%) loss of 5-HT and its metabolite 5-HIAA in cortex, hippocampus and striatum and a similar loss of [3H]-paroxetine binding in cortex: these losses reflecting the MDMA-induced neurotoxic degeneration of 5-HT nerve endings. In contrast, administration of MDEA (15, 25 or 35 mg/kg), even at the highest dose, produced only a 20% loss in cortex and hippocampus and no decrease in striatum. The neurotoxic effect of MDEA was only weakly dose-dependent. Neither MDEA (35 mg/kg) nor MDMA (15 mg/kg) altered striatal dopamine content 7 days later. MDEA appeared to have about half the potency of MDMA in inducing acute hyperthermia and 25% of the potency in inducing degeneration of cerebral 5-HT neurones. However since higher doses of MDEA (compared to MDMA) are probably necessary to induce mood changing effects, these data do not support any contention that this compound is a "safer" recreational drug than MDMA in terms of either acute toxicity or long term neurodegeneration. PMID:10401727

  7. Goldfish Leptin-AI and Leptin-AII: Function and Central Mechanism in Feeding Control.

    PubMed

    Yan, Ai-Fen; Chen, Ting; Chen, Shuang; Ren, Chun-Hua; Hu, Chao-Qun; Cai, Yi-Ming; Liu, Fang; Tang, Dong-Sheng

    2016-01-01

    In mammals, leptin is a peripheral satiety factor that inhibits feeding by regulating a variety of appetite-related hormones in the brain. However, most of the previous studies examining leptin in fish feeding were performed with mammalian leptins, which share very low sequence homologies with fish leptins. To elucidate the function and mechanism of endogenous fish leptins in feeding regulation, recombinant goldfish leptin-AI and leptin-AII were expressed in methylotrophic yeast and purified by immobilized metal ion affinity chromatography (IMAC). By intraperitoneal (IP) injection, both leptin-AI and leptin-AII were shown to inhibit the feeding behavior and to reduce the food consumption of goldfish in 2 h. In addition, co-treatment of leptin-AI or leptin-AII could block the feeding behavior and reduce the food consumption induced by neuropeptide Y (NPY) injection. High levels of leptin receptor (lepR) mRNA were detected in the hypothalamus, telencephalon, optic tectum and cerebellum of the goldfish brain. The appetite inhibitory effects of leptins were mediated by downregulating the mRNA levels of orexigenic NPY, agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and orexin and upregulating the mRNA levels of anorexigenic cocaine-amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART), cholecystokinin (CCK), melanin-concentrating hormone (MCH) and proopiomelanocortin (POMC) in different areas of the goldfish brain. Our study, as a whole, provides new insights into the functions and mechanisms of leptins in appetite control in a fish model. PMID:27249000

  8. Strain differences of cadmium-induced toxicity in rats: Insight from spleen and lung immune responses.

    PubMed

    Demenesku, Jelena; Popov Aleksandrov, Aleksandra; Mirkov, Ivana; Ninkov, Marina; Zolotarevski, Lidija; Kataranovski, Dragan; Brceski, Ilija; Kataranovski, Milena

    2016-08-10

    The impact of genetic background on effects of acute i.p. cadmium administration (0.5mg/kg and 1mg/kg) on basic immune activity of spleen and lungs was examined in two rat strains, Albino Oxford (AO) and Dark Agouti (DA), known to react differently to chemicals. More pronounced inhibition of Concanavalin A (ConA)-induced and Interleukin (IL)-2 stimulated spleen cell proliferation as well as higher levels of nitric oxide (known to decrease cell's proliferative ability) in DA rats at 1mg/kg, along with greater inhibition of ConA-induced Interferon (IFN-γ)-production by total and mononuclear (MNC) spleen cells and IL-17 production by spleen MNC in DA vs. AO rats at this dose show greater susceptibility of this strain to Cd effects on spleen cells response. More pronounced infiltration of neutrophils/CD11b(+) cells to lungs of DA rats treated with 1mg/kg of Cd and decreased IL-17 lung cell responses noted solely in DA rats speaks in favor of their higher susceptibility to this metal. However, lack of strain disparity in lung cells IFN-γ responses show that there are regional differences as well. Novel data from this study depict complexity of the influence of genetic background on the effects of cadmium on host immune reactivity. PMID:27234498

  9. Pre- and post-weaning cold exposure does not lead to an obese phenotype in adult Brandt's voles (Lasiopodomys brandtii).

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xue-Ying; Zhang, Qiang; Wang, De-Hua

    2011-07-01

    Evidence has shown that postnatal undernutrition, overnutrition and cold stress are associated with imbalanced metabolic regulation as rodents achieve adulthood. In this study, we used a breeding colony of Brandt's voles (Lasiopodomys brandtii), a wild rodent species from the Inner Mongolia grasslands in China, to examine the effects of pre- and post-weaning cold exposure on the adult body (fat) mass, serum hormones and hypothalamic neuropeptides. Unlike laboratory rodents, vole offspring exposed to pre-weaning cold did not exhibit overweight or obese phenotypes in adulthood compared with unexposed controls. Moreover, adult male voles that remained in colder conditions had less body mass and lower serum leptin levels despite having higher food intake compared to other groups. To understand the mechanism of this unexpected regulation, hypothalamic gene expression was assessed for pre- and post-weaning cold exposure. Voles exposed to cold before weaning increased hypothalamic, orexigenic agouti-related protein (AgRP) and decreased anorexigenic proopiomelanocortin (POMC) mRNA expression at weaning. These expression changes were associated with hyperphagia and catch-up growth after weaning. Interestingly, these changes in hypothalamic neuropeptides were short lasting because in adult voles these differences were no longer apparent, which might explain why the pre-weaning, cold-exposed voles did not become obese in adulthood. These data suggest that some species do not develop an obese phenotype in response to early life cold stress. PMID:21635895

  10. New inducible genetic method reveals critical roles of GABA in the control of feeding and metabolism.

    PubMed

    Meng, Fantao; Han, Yong; Srisai, Dollada; Belakhov, Valery; Farias, Monica; Xu, Yong; Palmiter, Richard D; Baasov, Timor; Wu, Qi

    2016-03-29

    Currently available inducible Cre/loxP systems, despite their considerable utility in gene manipulation, have pitfalls in certain scenarios, such as unsatisfactory recombination rates and deleterious effects on physiology and behavior. To overcome these limitations, we designed a new, inducible gene-targeting system by introducing an in-frame nonsense mutation into the coding sequence of Cre recombinase (nsCre). Mutant mRNAs transcribed from nsCre transgene can be efficiently translated into full-length, functional Cre recombinase in the presence of nonsense suppressors such as aminoglycosides. In a proof-of-concept model, GABA signaling from hypothalamic neurons expressing agouti-related peptide (AgRP) was genetically inactivated within 4 d after treatment with a synthetic aminoglycoside. Disruption of GABA synthesis in AgRP neurons in young adult mice led to a dramatic loss of body weight due to reduced food intake and elevated energy expenditure; they also manifested glucose intolerance. In contrast, older mice with genetic inactivation of GABA signaling by AgRP neurons had only transient reduction of feeding and body weight; their energy expenditure and glucose tolerance were unaffected. These results indicate that GABAergic signaling from AgRP neurons plays a key role in the control of feeding and metabolism through an age-dependent mechanism. This new genetic technique will augment current tools used to elucidate mechanisms underlying many physiological and neurological processes. PMID:26976589

  11. Development of injury in a rat model of chronic renal allograft rejection: effect of dietary protein restriction.

    PubMed

    Bombas, A; Stein-Oakley, A N; Baxter, K; Thomson, N M; Jablonski, P

    1999-01-01

    Non-allogeneic factors such as increased nephron "workload" may contribute to chronic renal allograft rejection. Reducing dietary protein from 20% to 8% was tested in a model of chronic rejection: Dark Agouti kidney to Albino Surgery recipient, "tolerised" by previous donor blood transfusions. Survival, weight gain, serum creatinine concentration and creatinine clearance were similar for both groups at all times. Urinary protein was significantly (P < 0.05) lower in the low-protein (LP) group 1 month after transplantation. After 3 and 6 months, both groups demonstrated mild chronic rejection. After 6 months, tubular atrophy was significantly (P < 0.05) less in the LP group and interstitial fibrosis was marginally reduced. Glomerular hypertrophy, glomerular sclerosis, tubular dilatation, leucocyte infiltration, adhesion molecule expression and TGF-beta1 mRNA expression were similarly increased in both groups. Thus, reducing dietary protein to 8% lowered urinary protein, but did not significantly affect the development of chronic rejection in renal allografts beyond affording a degree of protection from tubulointerstitial damage. PMID:10080402

  12. The odor of Osmanthus fragrans attenuates food intake

    PubMed Central

    Yamamoto, Takashi; Inui, Tadashi; Tsuji, Tadataka

    2013-01-01

    Odors have been shown to exert an influence on various physiological and behavioral activities. However, little is known whether or not odor stimulation directly affects the levels of feeding-related neuropeptides. Here we show that the neural transmission by Osmanthus fragrans (OSM) decreased the mRNA expression of orexigenic neuropeptides, such as agouti-related protein, neuropeptide Y, melanin-concentrating hormone and prepro-orexin, while increased anorexigenic neuropeptides, such as cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript and proopiomelanocortin in rats. The decreased number of orexin-immunoreactive neurons in the hypothalamus coincided well with the OSM-induced decreases in the expression of prepro-orexin mRNA. This study demonstrates that the OSM odor, which is known to have a mild sedative effect, decreases the motivation to eat, food intake and body weight, accompanied by sluggish masticatory movements. The data suggest that these effects are due to suppression of orexigenic neuropeptides and activation of anorexigenic neuropeptides in the hypothalamus. PMID:23519146

  13. Neuroendocrine control of satiation.

    PubMed

    Asarian, Lori; Bächler, Thomas

    2014-09-01

    Abstract Eating is a simple behavior with complex functions. The unconscious neuroendocrine process that stops eating and brings a meal to its end is called satiation. Energy homeostasis is mediated accomplished through the control of meal size via satiation. It involves neural integrations of phasic negative-feedback signals related to ingested food and tonic signals, such as those related to adipose tissue mass. Energy homeostasis is accomplished through adjustments in meal size brought about by changes in these satiation signals. The best understood meal-derived satiation signals arise from gastrointestinal nutrient sensing. Gastrointestinal hormones secreted during the meal, including cholecystokinin, glucagon-like peptide 1, and PYY, mediate most of these. Other physiological signals arise from activation of metabolic-sensing neurons, mainly in the hypothalamus and caudal brainstem. We review both classes of satiation signal and their integration in the brain, including their processing by melanocortin, neuropeptide Y/agouti-related peptide, serotonin, noradrenaline, and oxytocin neurons. Our review is not comprehensive; rather, we discuss only what we consider the best-understood mechanisms of satiation, with a special focus on normally operating physiological mechanisms. PMID:25390024

  14. AgRP Neurons Control Systemic Insulin Sensitivity via Myostatin Expression in Brown Adipose Tissue.

    PubMed

    Steculorum, Sophie M; Ruud, Johan; Karakasilioti, Ismene; Backes, Heiko; Engström Ruud, Linda; Timper, Katharina; Hess, Martin E; Tsaousidou, Eva; Mauer, Jan; Vogt, Merly C; Paeger, Lars; Bremser, Stephan; Klein, Andreas C; Morgan, Donald A; Frommolt, Peter; Brinkkötter, Paul T; Hammerschmidt, Philipp; Benzing, Thomas; Rahmouni, Kamal; Wunderlich, F Thomas; Kloppenburg, Peter; Brüning, Jens C

    2016-03-24

    Activation of Agouti-related peptide (AgRP) neurons potently promotes feeding, and chronically altering their activity also affects peripheral glucose homeostasis. We demonstrate that acute activation of AgRP neurons causes insulin resistance through impairment of insulin-stimulated glucose uptake into brown adipose tissue (BAT). AgRP neuron activation acutely reprograms gene expression in BAT toward a myogenic signature, including increased expression of myostatin. Interference with myostatin activity improves insulin sensitivity that was impaired by AgRP neurons activation. Optogenetic circuitry mapping reveals that feeding and insulin sensitivity are controlled by both distinct and overlapping projections. Stimulation of AgRP → LHA projections impairs insulin sensitivity and promotes feeding while activation of AgRP → anterior bed nucleus of the stria terminalis (aBNST)vl projections, distinct from AgRP → aBNSTdm projections controlling feeding, mediate the effect of AgRP neuron activation on BAT-myostatin expression and insulin sensitivity. Collectively, our results suggest that AgRP neurons in mice induce not only eating, but also insulin resistance by stimulating expression of muscle-related genes in BAT, revealing a mechanism by which these neurons rapidly coordinate hunger states with glucose homeostasis. PMID:27015310

  15. Juvenile-onset loss of lipid-raft domains in attractin-deficient mice

    SciTech Connect

    Azouz, Abdallah; Gunn, Teresa M.; Duke-Cohan, Jonathan S. . E-mail: Jonathan_Duke-Cohan@dfci.harvard.edu

    2007-02-15

    Mutations at the attractin (Atrn) locus in mice result in altered pigmentation on an agouti background, higher basal metabolic rate and juvenile-onset hypomyelination leading to neurodegeneration, while studies on human immune cells indicate a chemotaxis regulatory function. The underlying biochemical defect remains elusive. In this report we identify a role for attractin in plasma membrane maintenance. In attractin's absence there is a decline in plasma membrane glycolipid-enriched rafts from normal levels at 8 weeks to a complete absence by 24 weeks. The structural integrity of lipid rafts depends upon cholesterol and sphingomyelin, and can be identified by partitioning within of ganglioside GM{sub 1}. Despite a significant fall in cellular cholesterol with maturity, and a lesser fall in both membrane and total cellular GM{sub 1}, these parameters lag behind raft loss, and are normal when hypomyelination/neurodegeneration has already begun thus supporting consequence rather than cause. These findings can be recapitulated in Atrn-deficient cell lines propagated in vitro. Further, signal transduction through complex membrane receptor assemblies is not grossly disturbed despite the complete absence of lipid rafts. We find these results compatible with a role for attractin in plasma membrane maintenance and consistent with the proposal that the juvenile-onset hypomyelination and neurodegeneration represent a defect in attractin-mediated raft-dependent myelin biogenesis.

  16. A High-Throughput Fluorescence-Based Assay System for Appetite-Regulating Gene and Drug Screening

    PubMed Central

    Shimada, Yasuhito; Hirano, Minoru; Nishimura, Yuhei; Tanaka, Toshio

    2012-01-01

    The increasing number of people suffering from metabolic syndrome and obesity is becoming a serious problem not only in developed countries, but also in developing countries. However, there are few agents currently approved for the treatment of obesity. Those that are available are mainly appetite suppressants and gastrointestinal fat blockers. We have developed a simple and rapid method for the measurement of the feeding volume of Danio rerio (zebrafish). This assay can be used to screen appetite suppressants and enhancers. In this study, zebrafish were fed viable paramecia that were fluorescently-labeled, and feeding volume was measured using a 96-well microplate reader. Gene expression analysis of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (bdnf), knockdown of appetite-regulating genes (neuropeptide Y, preproinsulin, melanocortin 4 receptor, agouti related protein, and cannabinoid receptor 1), and the administration of clinical appetite suppressants (fluoxetine, sibutramine, mazindol, phentermine, and rimonabant) revealed the similarity among mechanisms regulating appetite in zebrafish and mammals. In combination with behavioral analysis, we were able to evaluate adverse effects on locomotor activities from gene knockdown and chemical treatments. In conclusion, we have developed an assay that uses zebrafish, which can be applied to high-throughput screening and target gene discovery for appetite suppressants and enhancers. PMID:23300705

  17. Defining the Contribution of MC1R Physiological Ligands to ATR Phosphorylation at Ser435, a Predictor of DNA Repair in Melanocytes.

    PubMed

    Jarrett, Stuart G; Wolf Horrell, Erin M; Boulanger, Mary C; D'Orazio, John A

    2015-12-01

    The melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R), a GS-coupled receptor that signals through cAMP and protein kinase A (PKA), regulates pigmentation, adaptive tanning, and melanoma resistance. MC1R-cAMP signaling promotes PKA-mediated phosphorylation of ataxia telangiectasia and rad3-related (ATR) at Ser435 (ATR-pS435), a modification that enhances nucleotide excision repair (NER) by facilitating recruitment of the XPA protein to sites of UV-induced DNA damage. High-throughput methods were developed to quantify ATR-pS435, measure XPA-photodamage interactions, and assess NER function. We report that melanocyte-stimulating hormone (α-MSH) or ACTH induce ATR-pS435, enhance XPA's association with UV-damaged DNA and optimize melanocytic NER. In contrast, MC1R antagonists agouti signaling protein (ASIP) or human β-defensin 3 (HBD3) interfere with ATR-pS435 generation, impair the XPA-DNA interaction, and reduce DNA repair. Although ASIP and HBD3 each blocked α-MSH-mediated induction of the signaling pathway, only ASIP depleted basal ATR-pS435. Our findings confirm that ASIP diminishes agonist-independent MC1R basal signaling whereas HBD3 is a neutral MC1R antagonist that blocks activation by melanocortins. Furthermore, our data suggest that ATR-pS435 may be a useful biomarker for the DNA repair-deficient MC1R phenotype. PMID:26168232

  18. Genetics of Sex-linked yellow in the Syrian Hamster

    PubMed Central

    Alizadeh, Azita; Hong, Lewis Z.; Kaelin, Christopher B.; Raudsepp, Terje; Manuel, Hermogenes; Barsh, Gregory S.

    2009-01-01

    Alternating patches of black and yellow pigment are a ubiquitous feature of mammalian color variation that contributes to camouflage, species recognition, and morphologic diversity. X-linked determinants of this pattern—recognized by variegation in females but not in males—have been described in the domestic cat as Orange, and in the Syrian hamster as Sex-linked yellow (Sly), but are curiously absent from other vertebrate species. Using a comparative genomic approach, we develop molecular markers and a linkage map for the euchromatic region of the Syrian hamster X chromosome that places Sly in a region homologous to the centromere-proximal region of human Xp. Comparison to analogous work carried out for Orange in domestic cats indicates, surprisingly, that the cat and hamster mutations lie in nonhomologous regions of the X chromosome. We also identify the molecular cause of recessively inherited black coat color in hamsters (historically referred to as nonagouti) as a Cys115Tyr mutation in the Agouti gene. Animals doubly mutant for Sly and nonagouti exhibit a Sly phenotype. Our results indicate that Sly represents a melanocortin pathway component that acts similarly to, but is genetically distinct from, Mc1r and that has implications for understanding both the evolutionary history and the mutational mechanisms of pigment-type switching. PMID:19189957

  19. Neuropeptide co-expression in hypothalamic kisspeptin neurons of laboratory animals and the human

    PubMed Central

    Skrapits, Katalin; Borsay, Beáta Á.; Herczeg, László; Ciofi, Philippe; Liposits, Zsolt; Hrabovszky, Erik

    2015-01-01

    Hypothalamic peptidergic neurons using kisspeptin (KP) and its co-transmitters for communication are critically involved in the regulation of mammalian reproduction and puberty. This article provides an overview of neuropeptides present in KP neurons, with a focus on the human species. Immunohistochemical studies reveal that large subsets of human KP neurons synthesize neurokinin B, as also shown in laboratory animals. In contrast, dynorphin described in KP neurons of rodents and sheep is found rarely in KP cells of human males and postmenopausal females. Similarly, galanin is detectable in mouse, but not human, KP cells, whereas substance P, cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript and proenkephalin-derived opioids are expressed in varying subsets of KP neurons in humans, but not reported in ARC of other species. Human KP neurons do not contain neurotensin, cholecystokinin, proopiomelanocortin-derivatives, agouti-related protein, neuropeptide Y, somatostatin or tyrosine hydroxylase (dopamine). These data identify the possible co-transmitters of human KP cells. Neurochemical properties distinct from those of laboratory species indicate that humans use considerably different neurotransmitter mechanisms to regulate fertility. PMID:25713511

  20. Sympathetic Neurotransmitters Modulate Osteoclastogenesis and Osteoclast Activity in the Context of Collagen-Induced Arthritis

    PubMed Central

    Muschter, Dominique; Schäfer, Nicole; Stangl, Hubert; Straub, Rainer H.; Grässel, Susanne

    2015-01-01

    Excessive synovial osteoclastogenesis is a hallmark of rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Concomitantly, local synovial changes comprise neuronal components of the peripheral sympathetic nervous system. Here, we wanted to analyze if collagen-induced arthritis (CIA) alters bone marrow-derived macrophage (BMM) osteoclastogenesis and osteoclast activity, and how sympathetic neurotransmitters participate in this process. Therefore, BMMs from Dark Agouti rats at different CIA stages were differentiated into osteoclasts in vitro and osteoclast number, cathepsin K activity, matrix resorption and apoptosis were analyzed in the presence of acetylcholine (ACh), noradrenaline (NA) vasoactive intestinal peptide (VIP) and assay-dependent, adenylyl cyclase activator NKH477. We observed modulation of neurotransmitter receptor mRNA expression in CIA osteoclasts without affecting protein level. CIA stage-dependently altered marker gene expression associated with osteoclast differentiation and activity without affecting osteoclast number or activity. Neurotransmitter stimulation modulated osteoclast differentiation, apoptosis and activity. VIP, NA and adenylyl cyclase activator NKH477 inhibited cathepsin K activity and osteoclastogenesis (NKH477, 10-6M NA) whereas ACh mostly acted pro-osteoclastogenic. We conclude that CIA alone does not affect metabolism of in vitro generated osteoclasts whereas stimulation with NA, VIP plus specific activation of adenylyl cyclase induced anti-resorptive effects probably mediated via cAMP signaling. Contrary, we suggest pro-osteoclastogenic and pro-resorptive properties of ACh mediated via muscarinic receptors. PMID:26431344

  1. A Postsynaptic AMPK→p21-Activated Kinase Pathway Drives Fasting-Induced Synaptic Plasticity in AgRP Neurons.

    PubMed

    Kong, Dong; Dagon, Yossi; Campbell, John N; Guo, Yikun; Yang, Zongfang; Yi, Xinchi; Aryal, Pratik; Wellenstein, Kerry; Kahn, Barbara B; Sabatini, Bernardo L; Lowell, Bradford B

    2016-07-01

    AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) plays an important role in regulating food intake. The downstream AMPK substrates and neurobiological mechanisms responsible for this, however, are ill defined. Agouti-related peptide (AgRP)-expressing neurons in the arcuate nucleus regulate hunger. Their firing increases with fasting, and once engaged they cause feeding. AgRP neuron activity is regulated by state-dependent synaptic plasticity: fasting increases dendritic spines and excitatory synaptic activity; feeding does the opposite. The signaling mechanisms underlying this, however, are also unknown. Using neuron-specific approaches to measure and manipulate kinase activity specifically within AgRP neurons, we establish that fasting increases AMPK activity in AgRP neurons, that increased AMPK activity in AgRP neurons is both necessary and sufficient for fasting-induced spinogenesis and excitatory synaptic activity, and that the AMPK phosphorylation target mediating this plasticity is p21-activated kinase. This provides a signaling and neurobiological basis for both AMPK regulation of energy balance and AgRP neuron state-dependent plasticity. PMID:27321921

  2. The challenges and importance of structural variation detection in livestock

    PubMed Central

    Bickhart, Derek M.; Liu, George E.

    2014-01-01

    Recent studies in humans and other model organisms have demonstrated that structural variants (SVs) comprise a substantial proportion of variation among individuals of each species. Many of these variants have been linked to debilitating diseases in humans, thereby cementing the importance of refining methods for their detection. Despite progress in the field, reliable detection of SVs still remains a problem even for human subjects. Many of the underlying problems that make SVs difficult to detect in humans are amplified in livestock species, whose lower quality genome assemblies and incomplete gene annotation can often give rise to false positive SV discoveries. Regardless of the challenges, SV detection is just as important for livestock researchers as it is for human researchers, given that several productive traits and diseases have been linked to copy number variations (CNVs) in cattle, sheep, and pig. Already, there is evidence that many beneficial SVs have been artificially selected in livestock such as a duplication of the agouti signaling protein gene that causes white coat color in sheep. In this review, we will list current SV and CNV discoveries in livestock and discuss the problems that hinder routine discovery and tracking of these polymorphisms. We will also discuss the impacts of selective breeding on CNV and SV frequencies and mention how SV genotyping could be used in the future to improve genetic selection. PMID:24600474

  3. Lack of Apoptosis of Infiltrating Cells as the Mechanism of High Susceptibility to EAE in DA Rats

    PubMed Central

    Mensah-Brown, Eric; Galadari, Sehamuddin; Shahin, Allen

    2001-01-01

    Dark Agouti (DA) rats are highly susceptible to induction of Th-l-mediated autoimmunity disease, including experimental allergic encephalomyelitis (EAE). In contrast to other susceptible rat strains in which disease is induced only with encephalitogen emulsified in complete Freund's adjuvants (CFA), in DA rats EAE develops after injection of encephalitogen in incomplete Freund's adjuvants (IFA) or Titermax, putative Th-2 directed adjuvant. Lymph node cells derived from immunized DA rats and stimulated in vitro produce significantly more Interferon-γ (IFN-γ) than resistant Albino Oxford (AO) rats. However, cells derived from both strains produce large amounts of IL-10 but not IL-4. Immunized lymph node cells derived from EAE susceptible (AO × DA) F1rats induce clinical signs of disease in sublethally irradiated parental DA but not AO rats. The pathohistology of the target tissue in these recipients clearly demonstrated infiltration of mononuclear cells in both parental strains. However, the number of CD4+ cells was significantly higher and number of apoptotic cells significantly lower in DA rats sacrificed 8 days after passive transfer. We postulate that in addition to higher IFN-γ and TNF-α production, resistance to early apoptosis of the invading cells in the target tissue possibly due to lack of downregulation by TGF-β leads to exceptional susceptibility to EAE in DA rats. PMID:11785669

  4. Identification of a small-molecule ligand that activates the neuropeptide receptor GPR171 and increases food intake.

    PubMed

    Wardman, Jonathan H; Gomes, Ivone; Bobeck, Erin N; Stockert, Jennifer A; Kapoor, Abhijeet; Bisignano, Paola; Gupta, Achla; Mezei, Mihaly; Kumar, Sanjai; Filizola, Marta; Devi, Lakshmi A

    2016-01-01

    Several neuropeptide systems in the hypothalamus, including neuropeptide Y and agouti-related protein (AgRP), control food intake. Peptides derived from proSAAS, a precursor implicated in the regulation of body weight, also control food intake. GPR171 is a heterotrimeric guanine nucleotide-binding protein (G protein)-coupled receptor (GPCR) for BigLEN (b-LEN), a peptide derived from proSAAS. To facilitate studies exploring the physiological role of GPR171, we sought to identify small-molecule ligands for this receptor by performing a virtual screen of a compound library for interaction with a homology model of GPR171. We identified MS0015203 as an agonist of GPR171 and demonstrated the selectivity of MS0015203 for GPR171 by testing the binding of this compound to 80 other membrane proteins, including family A GPCRs. Reducing the expression of GPR171 by shRNA (short hairpin RNA)-mediated knockdown blunted the cellular and tissue response to MS0015203. Peripheral injection of MS0015203 into mice increased food intake and body weight, and these responses were significantly attenuated in mice with decreased expression of GPR171 in the hypothalamus. Together, these results suggest that MS0015203 is a useful tool to probe the pharmacological and functional properties of GPR171 and that ligands targeting GPR171 may eventually lead to therapeutics for food-related disorders. PMID:27245612

  5. Interactions between SNP alleles at multiple loci contribute to skin color differences between caucasoid and mongoloid subjects.

    PubMed

    Anno, Sumiko; Abe, Takashi; Yamamoto, Takushi

    2008-01-01

    This study aimed to identify single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) alleles at multiple loci associated with racial differences in skin color using SNP genotyping. A total of 122 Caucasians in Toledo, Ohio and 100 Mongoloids in Japan were genotyped for 20 SNPs in 7 candidate genes, encoding the Agouti signaling protein (ASIP), tyrosinase-related protein 1 (TYRP1), tyrosinase (TYR), melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R), oculocutaneous albinism II (OCA2), microphthalmia-associated transcription factor (MITF), and myosin VA (MYO5A). Data were used to analyze associations between the 20 SNP alleles using linkage disequilibrium (LD). Combinations of SNP alleles were jointly tested under LD for associations with racial groups by performing a chi(2) test for independence. Results showed that SNP alleles at multiple loci can be considered the haplotype that contributes to significant differences between the two population groups and suggest a high probability of LD. Confirmation of these findings requires further study with other ethnic groups to analyze the associations between SNP alleles at multiple loci and skin color variation among races. PMID:18392143

  6. Regulation of eumelanin / pheomelanin synthesis and visible pigmentation in melanocytes by ligands of the melanocortin 1 receptor

    PubMed Central

    Le Pape, Elodie; Wakamatsu, Kazumasa; Ito, Shosuke; Wolber, Rainer; Hearing, Vincent J.

    2008-01-01

    The production of melanin in the hair and skin is tightly regulated by the melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R) whose activation is controlled by 2 secreted ligands, α-melanocyte stimulating hormone (αMSH) and agouti signal protein (ASP). Since melanin is extremely stable, lasting years in biological tissues, the mechanism underlying the relatively rapid decrease in visible pigmentation elicited by ASP is of obvious interest. In this study, the effects of ASP and αMSH on the regulation of melanin synthesis and on visible pigmentation were assessed in normal murine melanocytes and were compared with the quick depigmenting effect of the tyrosinase inhibitor, phenylthiourea (PTU). αMSH increased pheomelanin levels prior to increasing eumelanin content over 4 days of treatment. Conversely, ASP switched off the pigment synthesis pathway, reducing eu- and pheo- melanin synthesis within 1 day of treatment that was proportional to the decrease in tyrosinase protein level and activity. These results demonstrate that the visible depigmentation of melanocytes induced by ASP does not require the degradation of existing melanin but rather is due to the dilution of existing melanin by melanocyte turnover, which emphasizes the importance of pigment distribution to visible color. PMID:18627531

  7. A SINE insertion causes the black-and-tan and saddle tan phenotypes in domestic dogs.

    PubMed

    Dreger, Dayna L; Schmutz, Sheila M

    2011-01-01

    Agouti Signaling Protein (ASIP) controls the localized expression of red and black pigment in the domestic dog through interaction with other genes, such as Melanocortin 1 Receptor and Beta-Defensin 103. Specific ASIP alleles are necessary for many of the coat color patterns, such as black-and-tan and saddle tan. Mutations in 2 ASIP alleles, a(y) and a, have previously been identified. Here, we characterize a mutation consisting of a short interspersed nuclear element (SINE) insertion in intron 1 of ASIP that allows for the differentiation of the a(w) wolf sable and a(t) black-and-tan alleles. The SINE insertion is present in dogs with the a(t) and a alleles but absent from dogs with the a(w) and a(y) alleles. Dogs with the saddle tan phenotype were all a(t)/a(t). Schnauzers were all a(w)/a(w). Genotypes of 201 dogs of 35 breeds suggest that there are only 4 ASIP alleles, as opposed to the 5 or 6 predicted in previous literature. These data demonstrate that the dominance hierarchy of ASIP is a(y) > a(w) > a(t) > a. PMID:21846741

  8. Identification of a mutation that is associated with the saddle tan and black-and-tan phenotypes in Basset Hounds and Pembroke Welsh Corgis.

    PubMed

    Dreger, Dayna L; Parker, Heidi G; Ostrander, Elaine A; Schmutz, Sheila M

    2013-01-01

    The causative mutation for the black-and-tan (a (t) ) phenotype in dogs was previously shown to be a SINE insertion in the 5' region of Agouti Signaling Protein (ASIP). Dogs with the black-and-tan phenotype, as well as dogs with the saddle tan phenotype, genotype as a (t) /_ at this locus. We have identified a 16-bp duplication (g.1875_1890dupCCCCAGGTCAGAGTTT) in an intron of hnRNP associated with lethal yellow (RALY), which segregates with the black-and-tan phenotype in a group of 99 saddle tan and black-and-tan Basset Hounds and Pembroke Welsh Corgis. In these breeds, all dogs with the saddle tan phenotype had RALY genotypes of +/+ or +/dup, whereas dogs with the black-and-tan phenotype were homozygous for the duplication. The presence of an a (y) /_ fawn or e/e red genotype is epistatic to the +/_ saddle tan genotype. Genotypes from 10 wolves and 1 coyote indicated that the saddle tan (+) allele is the ancestral allele, suggesting that black-and-tan is a modification of saddle tan. An additional 95 dogs from breeds that never have the saddle tan phenotype have all three of the possible RALY genotypes. We suggest that a multi-gene interaction involving ASIP, RALY, MC1R, DEFB103, and a yet-unidentified modifier gene is required for expression of saddle tan. PMID:23519866

  9. Ribosomal S6K1 in POMC and AgRP Neurons Regulates Glucose Homeostasis but Not Feeding Behavior in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Mark A.; Katsouri, Loukia; Irvine, Elaine E.; Hankir, Mohammed K.; Pedroni, Silvia M.A.; Voshol, Peter J.; Gordon, Matthew W.; Choudhury, Agharul I.; Woods, Angela; Vidal-Puig, Antonio; Carling, David; Withers, Dominic J.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Hypothalamic ribosomal S6K1 has been suggested as a point of convergence for hormonal and nutrient signals in the regulation of feeding behavior, bodyweight, and glucose metabolism. However, the long-term effects of manipulating hypothalamic S6K1 signaling on energy homeostasis and the cellular mechanisms underlying these roles are unclear. We therefore inactivated S6K1 in pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) and agouti-related protein (AgRP) neurons, key regulators of energy homeostasis, but in contrast to the current view, we found no evidence that S6K1 regulates food intake and bodyweight. In contrast, S6K1 signaling in POMC neurons regulated hepatic glucose production and peripheral lipid metabolism and modulated neuronal excitability. S6K1 signaling in AgRP neurons regulated skeletal muscle insulin sensitivity and was required for glucose sensing by these neurons. Our findings suggest that S6K1 signaling is not a general integrator of energy homeostasis in the mediobasal hypothalamus but has distinct roles in the regulation of glucose homeostasis by POMC and AgRP neurons. PMID:25865886

  10. A novel role for pigment genes in the stress response in rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss)

    PubMed Central

    Khan, Uniza Wahid; Øverli, Øyvind; Hinkle, Patricia M.; Pasha, Farhan Ahmad; Johansen, Ida Beitnes; Berget, Ingunn; Silva, Patricia I. M.; Kittilsen, Silje; Höglund, Erik; Omholt, Stig W.; Våge, Dag Inge

    2016-01-01

    In many vertebrate species visible melanin-based pigmentation patterns correlate with high stress- and disease-resistance, but proximate mechanisms for this trait association remain enigmatic. Here we show that a missense mutation in a classical pigmentation gene, melanocyte stimulating hormone receptor (MC1R), is strongly associated with distinct differences in steroidogenic melanocortin 2 receptor (MC2R) mRNA expression between high- (HR) and low-responsive (LR) rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss). We also show experimentally that cortisol implants increase the expression of agouti signaling protein (ASIP) mRNA in skin, likely explaining the association between HR-traits and reduced skin melanin patterning. Molecular dynamics simulations predict that melanocortin 2 receptor accessory protein (MRAP), needed for MC2R function, binds differently to the two MC1R variants. Considering that mRNA for MC2R and the MC1R variants are present in head kidney cells, we hypothesized that MC2R activity is modulated in part by different binding affinities of the MC1R variants for MRAP. Experiments in mammalian cells confirmed that trout MRAP interacts with the two trout MC1R variants and MC2R, but failed to detect regulation of MC2R signaling, possibly due to high constitutive MC1R activity. PMID:27373344

  11. A novel role for pigment genes in the stress response in rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss).

    PubMed

    Khan, Uniza Wahid; Øverli, Øyvind; Hinkle, Patricia M; Pasha, Farhan Ahmad; Johansen, Ida Beitnes; Berget, Ingunn; Silva, Patricia I M; Kittilsen, Silje; Höglund, Erik; Omholt, Stig W; Våge, Dag Inge

    2016-01-01

    In many vertebrate species visible melanin-based pigmentation patterns correlate with high stress- and disease-resistance, but proximate mechanisms for this trait association remain enigmatic. Here we show that a missense mutation in a classical pigmentation gene, melanocyte stimulating hormone receptor (MC1R), is strongly associated with distinct differences in steroidogenic melanocortin 2 receptor (MC2R) mRNA expression between high- (HR) and low-responsive (LR) rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss). We also show experimentally that cortisol implants increase the expression of agouti signaling protein (ASIP) mRNA in skin, likely explaining the association between HR-traits and reduced skin melanin patterning. Molecular dynamics simulations predict that melanocortin 2 receptor accessory protein (MRAP), needed for MC2R function, binds differently to the two MC1R variants. Considering that mRNA for MC2R and the MC1R variants are present in head kidney cells, we hypothesized that MC2R activity is modulated in part by different binding affinities of the MC1R variants for MRAP. Experiments in mammalian cells confirmed that trout MRAP interacts with the two trout MC1R variants and MC2R, but failed to detect regulation of MC2R signaling, possibly due to high constitutive MC1R activity. PMID:27373344

  12. Mechanisms regulating c-met overexpression in liver-metastatic B16-LS9 melanoma cells.

    PubMed

    Elia, G; Ren, Y; Lorenzoni, P; Zarnegar, R; Burger, M M; Rusciano, D

    2001-01-01

    Liver selected B16-LS9 melanoma cells show a dramatic overexpression of the proto-oncogene c-met, the cellular receptor for hepatocyte growth factor/scatter factor. As a consequence, c-met becomes constitutively active, and the cells become more responsive to hepatocyte growth factor stimulation. We have investigated the molecular mechanisms regulating c-met expression in both the parental line B16-F1, which has low expression levels, and the liver-specific B16-LS9, overexpressing c-met. Overexpression is observed at the protein and mRNA levels, however without further evidence of gene amplification or rearrangement. c-met promoter activity was higher in B16-LS9 than B16-F1 cells, and also a nuclear run-off showed higher transcription levels in B16-LS9 cells. Moreover, we found that c-met mRNA had a longer half-life in B16-LS9 cells, thus indicating also the involvement of post-transcriptional regulation mechanisms. Finally, we found evidence that autonomous activation of the melanocortin receptor-1 (MCR-1) is at least partially responsible for c-met upregulation in B16-LS9 cells, since treatment of the cells with a potent MSH antagonist (the agouti peptide) has strong down-regulatory effects. PMID:11255230

  13. Appetite suppression and weight reduction by a centrally active aminosterol.

    PubMed

    Ahima, Rexford S; Patel, Hiralben R; Takahashi, Nobuhiko; Qi, Yong; Hileman, Stanley M; Zasloff, Michael A

    2002-07-01

    The rise in obesity and its complications has generated enormous interest in the regulation of feeding and body weight. We show that a spermine metabolite of cholesterol (MSI-1436) decreases body weight, specifically fat, by suppressing feeding and preventing the reduction in energy expenditure, hormonal changes, and patterns of neuropeptide expression normally associated with weight loss. MSI-1436 enters the brain after peripheral injection and is more potent when injected into the cerebral ventricle (intracerebroventricular [ICV]). Systemic or ICV MSI-1436 administration induced similar patterns of Fos immunoreactivity in the brain, especially the paraventricular hypothalamic nucleus (PVN). This brain region integrates neural signals from hypothalamic and brain stem nuclei and regulates feeding behavior, autonomic function, and neuroendocrine function. Microinjection of MSI-1436 into the PVN potently suppressed feeding and reduced body weight for several days. Unlike caloric restriction, MSI-1436 decreased mRNA levels of agouti-related peptide and neuropeptide Y in the hypothalamus. These findings indicate that MSI-1436 acts in the brain to regulate food intake and energy expenditure, likely through suppression of orexigenic hypothalamic pathways. PMID:12086938

  14. Neuroendorine and Epigentic Mechanisms Subserving Autonomic Imbalance and HPA Dysfunction in the Metabolic Syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Lemche, Erwin; Chaban, Oleg S.; Lemche, Alexandra V.

    2016-01-01

    Impact of environmental stress upon pathophysiology of the metabolic syndrome (MetS) has been substantiated by epidemiological, psychophysiological, and endocrinological studies. This review discusses recent advances in the understanding of causative roles of nutritional factors, sympathomedullo-adrenal (SMA) and hypothalamic-pituitary adrenocortical (HPA) axes, and adipose tissue chronic low-grade inflammation processes in MetS. Disturbances in the neuroendocrine systems for leptin, melanocortin, and neuropeptide Y (NPY)/agouti-related protein systems have been found resulting directly in MetS-like conditions. The review identifies candidate risk genes from factors shown critical for the functioning of each of these neuroendocrine signaling cascades. In its meta-analytic part, recent studies in epigenetic modification (histone methylation, acetylation, phosphorylation, ubiquitination) and posttranscriptional gene regulation by microRNAs are evaluated. Several studies suggest modification mechanisms of early life stress (ELS) and diet-induced obesity (DIO) programming in the hypothalamic regions with populations of POMC-expressing neurons. Epigenetic modifications were found in cortisol (here HSD11B1 expression), melanocortin, leptin, NPY, and adiponectin genes. With respect to adiposity genes, epigenetic modifications were documented for fat mass gene cluster APOA1/C3/A4/A5, and the lipolysis gene LIPE. With regard to inflammatory, immune and subcellular metabolism, PPARG, NKBF1, TNFA, TCF7C2, and those genes expressing cytochrome P450 family enzymes involved in steroidogenesis and in hepatic lipoproteins were documented for epigenetic modifications. PMID:27147943

  15. Genetics of dark skin in mice

    PubMed Central

    Fitch, Karen R.; McGowan, Kelly A.; van Raamsdonk, Catherine D.; Fuchs, Helmut; Lee, Daekee; Puech, Anne; Hérault, Yann; Threadgill, David W.; de Angelis, Martin Hrabé; Barsh, Gregory S.

    2003-01-01

    Chemical mutagenesis in the mouse is a powerful approach for phenotype-driven genetics, but questions remain about the efficiency with which new mutations ascertained by their phenotype can be localized and identified, and that knowledge applied to a specific biological problem. During a global screen for dominant phenotypes in about 30,000 animals, a novel class of pigmentation mutants were identified by dark skin (Dsk). We determined the genetic map location, homozygous phenotype, and histology of 10 new Dsk and 2 new dark coat (Dcc) mutations, and identified mutations in Agouti (Met1Leu, Dcc4), Sox18 (Leu220ter, Dcc1), Keratin 2e (Thr500Pro, Dsk2), and Egfr (Leu863Gln, Dsk5). Cutaneous effects of most Dsk mutations are limited to melanocytes, except for the Keratin 2e and Egfr mutations, in which hyperkeratosis and epidermal thickening precede epidermal melanocytosis by 3–6 wk. The Dsk2 mutation is likely to impair intermediate filament assembly, leading to cytolysis of suprabasal keratinocytes and secondary hyperkeratosis and melanocytosis. The Dsk5 mutation causes increased tyrosine kinase activity and a decrease in steady-state receptor levels in vivo. The Dsk mutations represent genes or map locations not implicated previously in pigmentation, and delineate a developmental pathway in which mutations can be classified on the basis of body region, microscopic site, and timing of pigment accumulation. PMID:12533510

  16. DNA methylation, an epigenetic mechanism connecting folate to healthy embryonic development and aging

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Kyong-chol; Friso, Simonetta; Choi, Sang-Woon

    2009-01-01

    Experimental studies demonstrated that maternal exposure to certain environmental and dietary factors during early embryonic development can influence the phenotype of offspring as well as the risk of disease development at the later life. DNA methylation, an epigenetic phenomenon, has been suggested as a mechanism by which maternal nutrients affect the phenotype of their offspring in both honeybee and agouti mouse models. Phenotypic changes through DNA methylation can be linked to folate metabolism by the knowledge that folate, a coenzyme of one-carbon metabolism, is directly involved in methyl group transfer for DNA methylation. During the fetal period, organ-specific DNA methylation patterns are established through epigenetic reprogramming. However, established DNA methylation patterns are not immutable and can be modified during our life time by the environment. Aberrant changes in DNA methylation with diet may lead to the development of age-associated diseases including cancer. It is also known that the aging process by itself is accompanied by alterations in DNA methylation. Diminished activity of DNA methyltransferases (Dnmts) can be a potential mechanism for the decreased genomic DNA methylation during aging, along with reduced folate intake and altered folate metabolism. Progressive hypermethylation in promoter regions of certain genes is observed throughout aging and repression of tumor suppressors induced by this epigenetic mechanism appears to be associated with cancer development. In this review we address the effect of folate on early development and aging through an epigenetic mechanism, DNA methylation. PMID:19733471

  17. Epigenomic Disruption: The Effects of Early Developmental Exposures

    PubMed Central

    Bernal, Autumn J.; Jirtle, Randy L.

    2010-01-01

    Through DNA methylation, histone modifications, and small regulatory RNAs the epigenome systematically controls gene expression during development-- both in utero and throughout life. The epigenome is also a very reactionary system; its labile nature allows it to sense and respond to environmental perturbations to ensure survival during fetal growth. This pliability can lead to aberrant epigenetic modifications that persist into later life and induce numerous disease states. Endocrine disrupting compounds (EDCs) are ubiquitous chemicals that interfere with growth and development. Several EDCs also interfere with epigenetic programming. The investigation of the epigenotoxic effects of bisphenol A (BPA), an EDC used in the production of plastics and resins, has further raised concern for the impact of EDCs on the epigenome. Using the Agouti viable yellow (Avy) mouse model, dietary BPA exposure was shown to hypomethylate both the Avy and the CabpIAP metastable epialleles. This hypomethylating effect was counteracted with dietary supplementation of methyl donors or genistein. These results are consistent with reports of BPA and other EDCs causing epigenetic effects. Epigenotoxicity could lead to numerous developmental, metabolic, and behavioral disorders in exposed populations. The heritable nature of epigenetic changes also increases the risk for transgenerational inheritance of phenotypes. Thus, epigenotoxicity must be considered when assessing these compounds for safety. PMID:20568270

  18. Lateral hypothalamic melanocortin receptor signaling modulates binge-like ethanol drinking in C57BL/6J mice.

    PubMed

    Sprow, Gretchen M; Rinker, Jennifer A; Lowery-Gointa, Emily G; Sparrow, Angela M; Navarro, Montserrat; Thiele, Todd E

    2016-07-01

    Binge ethanol drinking is a highly pervasive and destructive behavior yet the underlying neurobiological mechanisms remain poorly understood. Recent work suggests that overlapping neurobiological mechanisms modulate feeding disorders and excessive ethanol intake, and converging evidence indicates that the melanocortin (MC) system may be a promising candidate. The aims of the present work were to examine how repeated binge-like ethanol drinking, using the 'drinking in the dark' (DID) protocol, impacts key peptides within the MC system and if site-specific manipulation of MC receptor (MCR) signaling modulates binge-like ethanol drinking. Male C57BL/6J mice were exposed to one, three or six cycles of binge-like ethanol, sucrose or water drinking, after which brain tissue was processed via immunohistochemistry (IHC) for analysis of key MC peptides, including alpha-melanocyte stimulating hormone (α-MSH) and agouti-related protein (AgRP). Results indicated that α-MSH expression was selectively decreased, while AgRP expression was selectively increased, within specific hypothalamic subregions following repeated binge-like ethanol drinking. To further explore this relationship, we used site-directed drug delivery techniques to agonize or antagonize MCRs within the lateral hypothalamus (LH). We found that the nonselective MCR agonist melanotan-II (MTII) blunted, while the nonselective MCR antagonist AgRP augmented, binge-like ethanol consumption when delivered into the LH. As these effects were region-specific, the present results suggest that a more thorough understanding of the MC neurocircuitry within the hypothalamus will help provide novel insight into the mechanisms that modulate excessive binge-like ethanol intake and may help uncover new therapeutic targets aimed at treating alcohol abuse disorders. PMID:25975524

  19. Litter Size Variation in Hypothalamic Gene Expression Determines Adult Metabolic Phenotype in Brandt's Voles (Lasiopodomys brandtii)

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Xue-Ying; Zhang, Qiang; Wang, De-Hua

    2011-01-01

    Background Early postnatal environments may have long-term and potentially irreversible consequences on hypothalamic neurons involved in energy homeostasis. Litter size is an important life history trait and negatively correlated with milk intake in small mammals, and thus has been regarded as a naturally varying feature of the early developmental environment. Here we investigated the long-term effects of litter size on metabolic phenotype and hypothalamic neuropeptide mRNA expression involved in the regulation of energy homeostasis, using the offspring reared from large (10–12) and small (3–4) litter sizes, of Brandt's voles (Lasiopodomys brandtii), a rodent species from Inner Mongolia grassland in China. Methodology/Principal Findings Hypothalamic leptin signaling and neuropeptides were measured by Real-Time PCR. We showed that offspring reared from small litters were heavier at weaning and also in adulthood than offspring from large litters, accompanied by increased food intake during development. There were no significant differences in serum leptin levels or leptin receptor (OB-Rb) mRNA in the hypothalamus at weaning or in adulthood, however, hypothalamic suppressor of cytokine signaling 3 (SOCS3) mRNA in adulthood increased in small litters compared to that in large litters. As a result, the agouti-related peptide (AgRP) mRNA increased in the offspring from small litters. Conclusions/Significance These findings support our hypothesis that natural litter size has a permanent effect on offspring metabolic phenotype and hypothalamic neuropeptide expression, and suggest central leptin resistance and the resultant increase in AgRP expression may be a fundamental mechanism underlying hyperphagia and the increased risk of overweight in pups of small litters. Thus, we conclude that litter size may be an important and central determinant of metabolic fitness in adulthood. PMID:21637839

  20. Intranasal leptin reduces appetite and induces weight loss in rats with diet-induced obesity (DIO).

    PubMed

    Schulz, Carla; Paulus, Kerstin; Jöhren, Olaf; Lehnert, Hendrik

    2012-01-01

    Resistance to brain-mediated effects of leptin is a characteristic feature of obesity, resulting from alterations in leptin receptor signaling in hypothalamic neurons and/or transport across the blood-brain-barrier. We have shown previously, that the latter can be circumvented by intranasal (i.n.) application of leptin in lean rats. This prompted us to test i.n. leptin in animals with diet-induced obesity (DIO) as a basis for future human administration. DIO was induced in male Wistar rats by feeding a cafeteria diet for 25 or 32 wk, respectively. Consecutively, these DIO animals (seven to eight per treatment) and standard diet rats (lean) (14-15 per treatment, matched for age and diet duration) were treated with 0.1, 0.2 mg/kg leptin, or control solution i.n. daily for 4 wk before onset of dark period. Energy intake and body weight were measured daily; blood glucose, serum insulin, and leptin were measured before and after treatment. Expression of hypothalamic neuropeptides was assessed by quantitative real-time PCR. We demonstrate, for the first time, that i.n. leptin reduces appetite and induces weight loss in DIO to the same extent as in lean rats. Our findings are supported accordingly by an altered expression pattern of anorexigenic and orexigenic neuropeptides in the hypothalamus, e.g. proopiomelanocortin, cocaine and amphetamine-related transcript, neuropeptide Y, agouti-related protein. It now appears clear that i.n. leptin is effectively acting in obese animals in the same fashion as in their lean counterparts. These findings now clearly warrant studies in humans and may open new perspectives in the treatment of obesity. PMID:22128019

  1. Surfactant Protein D Deficiency in Mice Is Associated with Hyperphagia, Altered Fat Deposition, Insulin Resistance, and Increased Basal Endotoxemia

    PubMed Central

    Rahbek, Martin K. U.; Kirketerp-Møller, Katrine L.; Hansen, Pernille B. L.; Bie, Peter; Kejling, Karin; Mandrup, Susanne; Hawgood, Samuel; Nielsen, Ole; Nielsen, Claus H.; Owens, Trevor; Holmskov, Uffe; Sørensen, Grith L.

    2012-01-01

    Pulmonary surfactant protein D (SP-D) is a host defence lectin of the innate immune system that enhances clearance of pathogens and modulates inflammatory responses. Recently it has been found that systemic SP-D is associated with metabolic disturbances and that SP-D deficient mice are mildly obese. However, the mechanism behind SP-D's role in energy metabolism is not known. Here we report that SP-D deficient mice had significantly higher ad libitum energy intake compared to wild-type mice and unchanged energy expenditure. This resulted in accumulation but also redistribution of fat tissue. Blood pressure was unchanged. The change in energy intake was unrelated to the basal levels of hypothalamic Pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) and Agouti-related peptide (AgRP) gene expression. Neither short time systemic, nor intracereberoventricular SP-D treatment altered the hypothalamic signalling or body weight accumulation. In ad libitum fed animals, serum leptin, insulin, and glucose were significantly increased in mice deficient in SP-D, and indicative of insulin resistance. However, restricted diets eliminated all metabolic differences except the distribution of body fat. SP-D deficiency was further associated with elevated levels of systemic bacterial lipopolysaccharide. In conclusion, our findings suggest that lack of SP-D mediates modulation of food intake not directly involving hypothalamic regulatory pathways. The resulting accumulation of adipose tissue was associated with insulin resistance. The data suggest SP-D as a regulator of energy intake and body composition and an inhibitor of metabolic endotoxemia. SP-D may play a causal role at the crossroads of inflammation, obesity, and insulin resistance. PMID:22509382

  2. Blockage of the Neonatal Leptin Surge Affects the Gene Expression of Growth Factors, Glial Proteins, and Neuropeptides Involved in the Control of Metabolism and Reproduction in Peripubertal Male and Female Rats.

    PubMed

    Mela, Virginia; Díaz, Francisca; Lopez-Rodriguez, Ana Belen; Vázquez, María Jesús; Gertler, Arieh; Argente, Jesús; Tena-Sempere, Manuel; Viveros, María-Paz; Chowen, Julie A

    2015-07-01

    Leptin (Lep) is important in the development of neuroendocrine circuits involved in metabolic control. Because both Lep and metabolism influence pubertal development, we hypothesized that early changes in Lep signaling could also modulate hypothalamic (HT) systems involved in reproduction. We previously demonstrated that a single injection of a Lep antagonist (Antag) on postnatal day (PND)9, coincident with the neonatal Lep peak, induced sexually dimorphic modifications in trophic factors and markers of cell turnover and neuronal maturation in the HT on PND13. Here, our aim was to investigate whether the alterations induced by Lep antagonism persist into puberty. Accordingly, male and female rats were treated with a pegylated super Lep Antag from PND5 to PND9 and killed just before the normal appearance of external signs of puberty (PND33 in females and PND43 in males). There was no effect on body weight, but in males food intake increased, subcutaneous adipose tissue decreased and HT neuropeptide Y and Agouti-related peptide mRNA levels were reduced, with no effect in females. In both sexes, the Antag increased HT mRNA levels of the kisspeptin receptor, G protein-coupled recepter 54 (Gpr54). Expression of the Lep receptor, trophic factors, and glial markers were differently affected in the HT of peripubertal males and females. Lep production in adipose tissue was decreased in Antag-treated rats of both sexes, with production of other cytokines being differentially regulated between sexes. In conclusion, in addition to the long-term effects on metabolism, changes in neonatal Lep levels modifies factors involved in reproduction that could possibly affect sexual maturation. PMID:25856428

  3. Effects of vaspin, chemerin and omentin-1 on feeding behavior and hypothalamic peptide gene expression in the rat.

    PubMed

    Brunetti, Luigi; Di Nisio, Chiara; Recinella, Lucia; Chiavaroli, Annalisa; Leone, Sheila; Ferrante, Claudio; Orlando, Giustino; Vacca, Michele

    2011-09-01

    Visceral adipose tissue-derived serpin (vaspin) improves glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity in diet-induced obese mice. Chemerin may increase insulin sensitivity in adipose tissue and seems to be associated with several key aspects of metabolic syndrome. Decreased levels of omentin-1 are associated with increasing obesity and insulin resistance. Our study aimed to investigate the effects of vaspin, chemerin and omentin-1 acute administration on feeding and hypothalamic gene expression of peptides which play a key role in feeding regulation. 35 rats were injected into the arcuate nucleus (ARC) of the hypothalamus with either saline (n=8), vaspin (1μg/kg; n=9), chemerin (8μg/kg; n=9), or omentin-1 (8μg/kg; n=9). Food intake in the following 24h was recorded, thereafter rats were sacrificed. Total RNA was extracted from hypothalami and reverse transcribed to evaluate hypothalamic gene expression of agouti-related peptide (AgRP), neuropeptide Y (NPY), orexin-A, cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART), corticotrophin releasing hormone (CRH) and proopiomelanocortin (POMC), by real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction. Compared to vehicle, vaspin injection significantly decreased feeding, while chemerin and omentin-1 had no effect in the tested dose. Vaspin treatment significantly decreased NPY and increased POMC gene expression. Chemerin treatment led to a significant increase of both AgRP and POMC gene expression. Omentin-1 treatment did not modify gene expression of the investigated peptides. Therefore, vaspin is an adipokine triggering anorectic pathways in the hypothalamus, where reduction of NPY and increase of POMC mRNA levels mediate feeding inhibition. Chemerin and omentin-1 have no effect on feeding in the tested dose. PMID:21855588

  4. Sequence analysis of three pigmentation genes in the Newfoundland population of Canis latrans links the Golden Retriever Mc1r variant to white coat color in coyotes.

    PubMed

    Brockerville, Ryan M; McGrath, Michael J; Pilgrim, Brettney L; Marshall, H Dawn

    2013-04-01

    Three genes, Mc1r, Agouti, and CBD103, interact in a type-switching process that controls much of the pigmentation variation observed in mammals. A deletion in the CBD103 gene is responsible for dominant black color in dogs, while the white-phased black bear ("spirit bear") of British Columbia, Canada, is the lightest documented color variant caused by a mutation in Mc1r. Rare all-white animals have recently been discovered in a new northeastern population of the coyote in insular Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. To investigate the causative gene and mutation of white coat in coyotes, we sequenced the three type-switching genes in white and dark-phased animals from Newfoundland. The only sequence variants unambiguously associated with white color were in Mc1r, and one of these variants causes the amino acid variant R306Ter, a premature stop codon also linked to coat color in Golden Retrievers and other dogs with yellow/red coats. The allele carrying R306Ter in coyotes matches that in the Golden Retriever at other variable amino acid sites and hence may have originated in these dogs. Coyotes experienced introgression with wolves and dogs as they colonized northeastern North America, and coyote/Golden Retriever interactions have been observed in Newfoundland. We speculate that natural selection, with or without a founder effect, may contribute to the observed frequency of white coyotes in Newfoundland, as it has contributed to the high frequency of white bears, and of a domestic dog-derived CBD allele in gray wolves. PMID:23297074

  5. ROCK1 in AgRP Neurons Regulates Energy Expenditure and Locomotor Activity in Male Mice

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Hu; Lee, Seung Hwan; Ye, Chianping; Lima, Ines S.; Oh, Byung-Chul; Lowell, Bradford B.; Zabolotny, Janice M.

    2013-01-01

    Normal leptin signaling is essential for the maintenance of body weight homeostasis. Proopiomelanocortin- and agouti-related peptide (AgRP)-producing neurons play critical roles in regulating energy metabolism. Our recent work demonstrates that deletion of Rho-kinase 1 (ROCK1) in the AgRP neurons of mice increased body weight and adiposity. Here, we report that selective loss of ROCK1 in AgRP neurons caused a significant decrease in energy expenditure and locomotor activity of mice. These effects were independent of any change in food intake. Furthermore, AgRP neuron-specific ROCK1-deficient mice displayed central leptin resistance, as evidenced by impaired Signal Transducer and Activator of Transcription 3 activation in response to leptin administration. Leptin's ability to hyperpolarize and decrease firing rate of AgRP neurons was also abolished in the absence of ROCK1. Moreover, diet-induced and genetic forms of obesity resulted in reduced ROCK1 activity in murine arcuate nucleus. Of note, high-fat diet also impaired leptin-stimulated ROCK1 activity in arcuate nucleus, suggesting that a defect in hypothalamic ROCK1 activity may contribute to the pathogenesis of central leptin resistance in obesity. Together, these data demonstrate that ROCK1 activation in hypothalamic AgRP neurons is required for the homeostatic regulation of energy expenditure and adiposity. These results further support previous work identifying ROCK1 as a key regulator of energy balance and suggest that targeting ROCK1 in the hypothalamus may lead to development of antiobesity therapeutics. PMID:23885017

  6. GABAergic signaling by AgRP neurons prevents anorexia via a melanocortin-independent mechanism

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Qi; Palmiter, Richard D.

    2011-01-01

    The hypothalamic arcuate nucleus contains two anatomically and functionally distinct populations of neurons – the agouti-related peptide (AgRP)- and pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC)-expressing neurons that integrate various nutritional, hormonal, and neuronal signals to regulate food intake and energy expenditure, and thereby help achieve energy homeostasis. AgRP neurons, also co-release neuropeptide Y and γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) to promote feeding and inhibit metabolism through at least three possible mechanisms: (1) suppression of the melanocortin signaling system through competitive binding of AgRP with the melanocortin 4 receptors; (2) neuropeptide Y-mediated inhibition of post-synaptic neurons that reside in hypothalamic nuclei; (3) GABAergic inhibition of POMC neurons in their post-synaptic targets including the parabrachial nucleus (parabrachial nucleus), a brainstem structure that relays gustatory and visceral sensory information. Acute ablation of AgRP neurons in adult mice by the action of diphtheria toxin (DT) results in precipitous reduction of food intake, and eventually leads to starvation within 6 days of DT treatment. Chronic delivery of bretazenil, a GABAA receptor partial agonist, into the parabrachial nucleus is sufficient to restore feeding and body weight when AgRP neurons are ablated, whereas chronic blockade of melanocortin 4 receptor signaling is inadequate. This review summarizes the physiological roles of a neural circuitry regulated by AgRP neurons in control of feeding behavior with particular emphasis of the GABA output to the parabrachial nucleus. We also describe a compensatory mechanism that is gradually engaged after ablation of AgRP neurons that allows mice to continue eating without them. PMID:21211531

  7. The MC1R and ASIP Coat Color Loci May Impact Behavior in the Horse.

    PubMed

    Jacobs, Lauren N; Staiger, Elizabeth A; Albright, Julia D; Brooks, Samantha A

    2016-05-01

    Shared signaling pathways utilized by melanocytes and neurons result in pleiotropic traits of coat color and behavior in many mammalian species. For example, in humans polymorphisms at MC1R cause red hair, increased heat sensitivity, and lower pain tolerance. In deer mice, rats, and foxes, ASIP polymorphisms causing black coat color lead to more docile demeanors and reduced activity. Horse (Equus caballus) base coat color is primarily determined by polymorphisms at the Melanocortin-1 Receptor (MC1R) and Agouti Signaling Protein (ASIP) loci, creating a black, bay, or chestnut coat. Our goal was to investigate correlations between genetic loci for coat color and temperament traits in the horse. We genotyped a total of 215 North American Tennessee Walking Horses for the 2 most common alleles at the MC1R (E/e) and ASIP (A/a) loci using previously published PCR and RFLP methods. The horses had a mean age of 10.5 years and comprised 83 geldings, 25 stallions, and 107 mares. To assess behavior, we adapted a previously published survey for handlers to score horses from 1 to 9 on 20 questions related to specific aspects of temperament. We utilized principle component analysis to combine the individual survey scores into 4 factors of variation in temperament phenotype. A factor component detailing self-reliance correlated with genotypes at the ASIP locus; black mares (aa) were more independent than bay mares (A_) (P = 0.0063). These findings illuminate a promising and novel animal model for future study of neuroendocrine mechanisms in complex behavioral phenotypes. PMID:26884605

  8. Dihydrotestosterone as a Protective Agent in Chronic Experimental Autoimmune Encephalomyelitis.

    PubMed

    Giatti, Silvia; Rigolio, Roberta; Romano, Simone; Mitro, Nico; Viviani, Barbara; Cavaletti, Guido; Caruso, Donatella; Garcia-Segura, Luis Miguel; Melcangi, Roberto Cosimo

    2015-01-01

    Multiple sclerosis is a chronic inflammatory disease affecting the central nervous system. As reported by clinical observations, variation in hormonal levels might alter disease susceptibility and progression. Specifically, decreased levels of testosterone in males are reported to be permissive for disease onset. Accordingly, testosterone seems to exert protective effects in experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE). In this context, it is important to highlight that testosterone is further metabolized into 17β-estradiol or dihydrotestosterone (DHT). In this study, we aimed to explore the protective effects of DHT treatment in EAE Dark Agouti rats (i.e. an experimental model showing a protracted relapsing EAE). Data obtained 45 days after EAE induction showed that DHT exerts a beneficial effect on clinical scores, coupled with decreased gliosis (i.e. glial fibrillary acidic protein and major histocompatibility complex of class II staining) and inflammation (i.e. translocator protein 18 kDa, interleukin-1β, Toll-like receptor 4 and nuclear factor-κB expression) in the spinal cord. Moreover, parameters linked to oxidative stress and tissue damage, like thiobarbituric acid-reactive substance levels and Bcl-2-associated X protein expression, and to mitochondrial activity (i.e. content of mitochondrial DNA and proteins), were improved after DHT administration. This neuroactive steroid may be further metabolized into 3α- or 3β-diol. However, assessment of the levels of these metabolites after DHT treatment seems to suggest that the protective effects observed here are due to DHT itself. Altogether, the present results indicate that DHT was effective in reducing the severity of chronic EAE and, consequently, may represent an interesting perspective for multiple sclerosis treatment. PMID:25765436

  9. Seasonal Differences in Relative Gene Expression of Putative Central Appetite Regulators in Arctic Charr (Salvelinus alpinus) Do Not Reflect Its Annual Feeding Cycle

    PubMed Central

    Striberny, Anja; Ravuri, Chandra Sekhar; Jobling, Malcolm; Jørgensen, Even Hjalmar

    2015-01-01

    The highly seasonal anadromous Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus) was used to investigate the possible involvement of altered gene expression of brain neuropeptides in seasonal appetite regulation. Pro-opiomelanocortin (POMCA1, POMCA2), Cocaine and amphetamine regulated transcript (CART), Agouti related Peptide (AgRP), Neuropeptide Y (NPY) and Melanocortin Receptor 4 (MC4-R) genes were examined. The function of centrally expressed Leptin (Lep) in fish remains unclear, so Lep (LepA1, LepA2) and Leptin Receptor (LepR) genes were included in the investigation. In a ten months study gene expression was analysed in hypothalamus, mesencephalon and telencephalon of immature charr held under natural photoperiod (69°38’N) and ambient temperature and given excess feed. From April to the beginning of June the charr did not feed and lost weight, during July and August they were feeding and had a marked increase in weight and condition factor, and from November until the end of the study the charr lost appetite and decreased in weight and condition factor. Brain compartments were sampled from non-feeding charr (May), feeding charr (July), and non-feeding charr (January). Reverse transcription real-time quantitative PCR revealed temporal patterns of gene expression that differed across brain compartments. The non-feeding charr (May, January) had a lower expression of the anorexigenic LepA1, MC4-R and LepR in hypothalamus and a higher expression of the orexigenic NPY and AgRP in mesencephalon, than the feeding charr (July). In the telencephalon, LepR was more highly expressed in January and May than in July. These results do not indicate that changes in central gene expression of the neuropeptides investigated here directly induce seasonal changes in feeding in Arctic charr. PMID:26421838

  10. Early-life lead exposure results in dose- and sex-specific effects on weight and epigenetic gene regulation in weanling mice

    PubMed Central

    Faulk, Christopher; Barks, Amanda; Liu, Kevin; Goodrich, Jaclyn M; Dolinoy, Dana C

    2013-01-01

    Aims Epidemiological and animal data suggest that the development of adult chronic conditions is influenced by early-life exposure-induced changes to the epigenome. This study investigates the effects of perinatal lead (Pb) exposure on DNA methylation and bodyweight in weanling mice. Materials & methods Viable yellow agouti (Avy) mouse dams were exposed to 0, 2.1, 16 and 32 ppm Pb acetate before conception through weaning. Epigenetic effects were evaluated by scoring coat color of Avy/a offspring and quantitative bisulfite sequencing of two retrotransposon-driven (Avy and CDK5 activator-binding protein intracisternal A particle element) and two imprinted (Igf2 and Igf2r) loci in tail DNA. Results Maternal blood Pb levels were below the limit of detection in controls, and 4.1, 25.1 and 32.1 μg/dl for each dose, respectively. Pb exposure was associated with a trend of increased wean bodyweight in males (p = 0.03) and altered coat color in Avy/a offspring. DNA methylation at Avy and the CDK5 activator-binding protein intracisternal A-particle element was significantly different from controls following a cubic trend (p = 0.04; p = 0.01), with male-specific effects at the Avy locus. Imprinted genes did not shift in methylation across exposures. Conclusion Dose- and sex-specific responses in bodyweight and DNA methylation indicate that Pb acts on the epigenome in a locus-specific fashion, dependent on the genomic feature hosting the CpG site of interest, and that sex is a factor in epigenetic response. PMID:24059796

  11. Perinatal Lead Exposure Alters Gut Microbiota Composition and Results in Sex-specific Bodyweight Increases in Adult Mice.

    PubMed

    Wu, Jianfeng; Wen, Xiaoquan William; Faulk, Christopher; Boehnke, Kevin; Zhang, Huapeng; Dolinoy, Dana C; Xi, Chuanwu

    2016-06-01

    Heavy metal pollution is a principle source of environmental contamination. Epidemiological and animal data suggest that early life lead (Pb) exposure results in critical effects on epigenetic gene regulation and child and adult weight trajectories. Using a mouse model of human-relevant exposure, we investigated the effects of perinatal Pb exposure on gut microbiota in adult mice, and the link between gut microbiota and bodyweight changes. Following Pb exposure during gestation and lactation via maternal drinking water, bodyweight in A(vy) strain wild-type non-agouti (a/a) offspring was tracked through adulthood. Gut microbiota of adult mice were characterized by deep DNA sequencing of bacterial 16S ribosomal RNA genes. Data analyses were stratified by sex and adjusted for litter effects. A Bayesian variable selection algorithm was used to analyze associations between bacterial operational taxonomic units and offspring adult bodyweight. Perinatal Pb exposure was associated with increased adult bodyweight in male (P < .05) but not in female offspring (P = .24). Cultivable aerobes decreased and anaerobes increased in Pb-exposed offspring (P < .005 and P < .05, respectively). Proportions of the 2 predominant phyla (Bacteroidetes and Firmicutes) shifted inversely with Pb exposure, and whole bacterial compositions were significantly different (analysis of molecular variance, P < .05) by Pb exposure without sex bias. In males, changes in gut microbiota were highly associated with adult bodyweight (P = .028; effect size = 2.59). Thus, perinatal Pb exposure results in altered adult gut microbiota regardless of sex, and these changes are highly correlated with increased bodyweight in males. Adult gut microbiota can be shaped by early exposures and may contribute to disease risks in a sex-specific manner. PMID:26962054

  12. Meal pattern analysis in neural-specific proopiomelanocortin-deficient mice.

    PubMed

    Richard, Christian D; Tolle, Virginie; Low, Malcolm J

    2011-06-11

    The central melanocortin system, consisting of melanocortin peptides, agouti gene related peptide and their receptors plays a critical role in the homeostatic control of energy balance. Loss of function mutations in the genes encoding proopiomelanocortin or melanocortin MC(4) receptors cause profound obesity and hyperphagia. However, little is known about the functional relationship of melanocortin neurocircuits to the temporal organization of meal-taking behavior. We used an operant paradigm that combined lever pressing for food pellet deliveries with free water intake monitored by lickometers to quantify meal patterns in mutant mice that selectively lack proopiomelanocortin expression in hypothalamic neurons (nPOMCKO). Compared to wildtype siblings, nPOMCKO mice consumed 50% more food and water daily and exhibited a more stereotyped feeding pattern characterized by reduced inter-meal and inter-mouse variations. Average meals were larger in size but shorter in duration, with no change in meal number. Consequently, intermeal intervals were prolonged in nPOMCKO mice. Similar patterns were observed in pre-obese juvenile and frankly obese adult mice suggesting that neither age nor degree of obesity was responsible for the altered phenotypes. Spontaneous locomotion and wheel running were decreased in nPOMCKO mice, but circadian variations in locomotor and feeding activity were conserved. These data show that hyperphagia in male nPOMCKO mice is due to increased meal size but not meal number, and this pattern is established by age of 5weeks. The combination of larger, more rapidly consumed meals and prolonged intermeal intervals suggests that proopiomelanocortin peptides are necessary for normal meal termination, but not the maintenance of satiety. PMID:21211523

  13. Creating leptin-like biofunctions by active immunization against chicken leptin receptor in growing chickens.

    PubMed

    Lei, M M; Wu, S Q; Shao, X B; Li, X W; Chen, Z; Ying, S J; Shi, Z D

    2015-01-01

    In this study, immunization against chicken leptin receptor (cLEPR) extracellular domain (ECD) was applied to investigate leptin regulation and LEPR biofunction in growing chicken pullets. A recombinant protein (cLEPR ECD) based on the cLEPR complemenary DNA sequence corresponding to the 582nd to 796th amino acid residues of cLEPR mature peptide was prepared and used as antigen. Immunization against cLEPR ECD in growing chickens increased anti-cLEPR ECD antibody titers in blood, enhanced proportions of phosphorylated janus kinase 2 (JAK2) and served as signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3) protein in liver tissue. Chicken live weight gain and abdominal fat mass were significantly decreased (P < 0.05), but feed intake was stimulated by cLEPR ECD immunization (P < 0.05). The treatment also upregulated the gene expression levels of lepR, AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK), acetyl CoA carboxylase-2 (ACC2), and uncoupling protein 3 (UCP3) in liver, abdominal fat, and breast muscle (P < 0.05) but decreased fasn expression levels (P < 0.01). Apart from that of lepR, the expression of appetite-regulating genes, such as orexigenic genes, agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and neuropeptide Y (NPY), were upregulated (P < 0.01), whereas the anorexigenic gene proopiomelanocortin (POMC) was downregulated in the hypothalamic tissue of cLEPR-immunized pullets (P < 0.01). Blood concentrations of metabolic molecules, such as glucose, triglycerides, and very-low-density lipoprotein, were significantly decreased in cLEPR-immunized pullets but those of cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein, and low-density lipoprotein increased. These results demonstrate that antibodies to membrane proximal cLEPR ECD enhance cLEPR signal transduction, which stimulates metabolism and reduces fat deposition in chickens. PMID:25447880

  14. Agonist-independent, high constitutive activity of the human melanocortin 1 receptor.

    PubMed

    Sánchez-Más, Jesús; Hahmann, Christa; Gerritsen, Ineke; García-Borrón, José C; Jiménez-Cervantes, Celia

    2004-08-01

    The melanocortins (alpha-melanocyte-stimulating hormone and adrenocorticotropin) act on epidermal melanocytes to increase melanogenesis, the eumelanin/pheomelanin ratio and dendricity. These actions are mediated by the heptahelical melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R), positively coupled to adenylyl cyclase. Gain-of-function mouse Mc1r alleles are associated with a dark, eumelanic coat. Conversely, loss-of-function variants, or overexpression of agouti, a natural melanocortin antagonist, yield yellow, pheomelanic furs. In humans, loss-of-function MC1R variants are associated with fair skin, poor tanning, propensity to freckle and increased skin cancer risk. Therefore, MC1R is a key regulator of mammalian pigmentation. Several observations such as induction of constitutive pigmentation in amelanotic mouse melanoma cells following expression of MC1R indicate that the receptor might display agonist-independent activity. We report a systematic and comparative study of MC1R and Mc1r constitutive activity. We show that expression of MC1R in heterologous systems leads to an agonist-independent increase in cyclic adenosine monophophate (cAMP). Basal signalling is a function of receptor expression and is two to fourfold higher for MC1R than for Mc1r. Moreover, it is observed in human melanoma cells over-expressing the MC1R. Constitutive signalling is abolished or reduced by point mutations of MC1R impairing the response to agonists, and is only doubled by the Lys94Glu mutation, mimicking the constitutively active mouse E(so-3J) allele. Stable or transient expression of wild-type MC1R, but not of loss-of-function mutants, potently stimulates forskolin activation of adenylyl cyclase, a common feature of constitutively active Gs-coupled receptors. Therefore, human MC1R displays a strong agonist-independent constitutive activity. PMID:15250941

  15. WITHDRAWN BY AUTHOR: Central Sirt1 Regulates Body Weight and Energy Expenditure Along With the POMC-Derived Peptide α-MSH and the Processing Enzyme CPE Production in Diet-Induced Obese Male Rats

    PubMed Central

    Cyr, Nicole E.; Steger, Jennifer S.; Toorie, Anika M.; Yang, Jonathan Z.; Stuart, Ronald

    2014-01-01

    In the periphery, the nutrient-sensing enzyme Sirtuin 1 (silent mating type information regulation 2 homolog 1 [Sirt1]) reduces body weight in diet-induced obese (DIO) rodents. However, the role of Sirt1 in the brain, particularly the hypothalamus, in body weight and energy balance regulation is debated. Among the first studies to reveal that central Sirt1 regulates body weight came from experiments in our laboratory using Sprague Dawley rats. In that study, central inhibition of Sirt1 decreased body weight and food intake as a result of a Forkhead box protein O1 (FoxO1)-mediated increase in the anorexigenic proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and decrease in the orexigenic Agouti-related peptide in the hypothalamic arcuate nucleus. Here, we demonstrate that central inhibition of Sirt1 in DIO decreased body weight and increased energy expenditure at higher levels as compared with the lean counterpart. Brain Sirt1 inhibition in DIO increased acetylated FoxO1, which, in turn, increased phosphorylated FoxO1 via improved insulin/pAKT signaling. Elevated acetylated FoxO1 and phosphorylated FoxO1 increased POMC along with the α-MSH maturation enzyme carboxypeptidase E, which resulted in more of the bioactive POMC product α-MSH released into the paraventricular nucleus. Increased in α-MSH led to augmented TRH levels and circulating T3 levels (thyroid hormone). These results indicate that inhibiting hypothalamic Sirt1 in DIO enhances the activity of the hypothalamic-pituitary-thyroid axis, which stimulates energy expenditure. Because we show that blocking central Sirt1 causes physiological changes that promote a negative energy balance in an obese individual, our results support brain Sirt1 as a significant target for weight loss therapeutics. PMID:24773342

  16. Central Sirt1 Regulates Body Weight and Energy Expenditure Along With the POMC-Derived Peptide α-MSH and the Processing Enzyme CPE Production in Diet-Induced Obese Male Rats

    PubMed Central

    Cyr, Nicole E.; Steger, Jennifer S.; Toorie, Anika M.; Yang, Jonathan Z.; Stuart, Ronald

    2015-01-01

    In the periphery, the nutrient-sensing enzyme Sirtuin 1 (silent mating type information regulation 2 homolog 1 [Sirt1]) reduces body weight in diet-induced obese (DIO) rodents. However, the role of hypothalamic Sirt1 in body weight and energy balance regulation is debated. The first studies to reveal that central Sirt1 regulates body weight came from experiments in our laboratory using Sprague-Dawley rats. Central inhibition of Sirt1 decreased body weight and food intake as a result of a forkhead box protein O1 (FoxO1)-mediated increase in the anorexigenic proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and decrease in the orexigenic Agouti-related peptide in the hypothalamic arcuate nucleus. Here, we demonstrate that central inhibition of Sirt1 in DIO decreased body weight and increased energy expenditure at higher levels as compared with the lean counterpart. Brain Sirt1 inhibition in DIO increased acetylated FoxO1, which in turn increased phosphorylated FoxO1 via improved insulin/phosphorylated AKT signaling. Elevated acetylated FoxO1 and phosphorylated FoxO1 increased POMC along with the α-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (α-MSH) maturation enzyme carboxypeptidase E, which resulted in more of the bioactive POMC product α-MSH released into the paraventricular nucleus. Increased in α-MSH led to augmented TRH levels and circulating T3 levels (triiodothyronine, thyroid hormone). These results indicate that inhibiting hypothalamic Sirt1 in DIO enhances the activity of the hypothalamic-pituitary-thyroid axis, which stimulates energy expenditure. Because we show that blocking central Sirt1 causes physiological changes that promote a negative energy balance in an obese individual, our results support brain Sirt1 as a significant target for weight loss therapeutics. PMID:25549049

  17. Type 1 cannabinoid receptor modulates water deprivation-induced homeostatic responses.

    PubMed

    Ruginsk, Silvia G; Vechiato, Fernanda M V; Uchoa, Ernane T; Elias, Lucila L K; Antunes-Rodrigues, Jose

    2015-12-01

    The present study investigated the type 1 cannabinoid receptor (CB1R) as a potential candidate to mediate the homeostatic responses triggered by 24 h of water deprivation, which constitutes primarily a hydroelectrolytic challenge and also significantly impacts energy homeostasis. The present results demonstrated for the first time that CB1R mRNA expression is increased in the hypothalamus of water-deprived (WD) rats. Furthermore, the administration of ACEA, a CB1R selective agonist, potentiated WD-induced dipsogenic effect, whereas AM251, a CB1R antagonist, attenuated not only water but also salt intake in response to WD. In parallel with the modulation of thirst and salt appetite, we confirmed that CB1Rs are essential for the development of appropriated neuroendocrine responses. Although the administration of ACEA or AM251 did not produce any effects on WD-induced arginine vasopressin (AVP) secretion, oxytocin (OXT) plasma concentrations were significantly decreased in WD rats treated with ACEA. At the genomic level, ACEA significantly decreased AVP and OXT mRNA expression in the hypothalamus of WD rats, whereas AM251 potentiated both basal and WD-induced stimulatory effects on the transcription of AVP and OXT genes. In addition, we showed that water deprivation alone upregulated proopiomelanocortin, Agouti-related peptide, melanin-concentrating hormone, and orexin A mRNA levels in the hypothalamus, and that CB1Rs regulate main central peptidergic pathways controlling food intake, being that most of these effects were also significantly influenced by the hydration status. In conclusion, the present study demonstrated that CB1Rs participate in the homeostatic responses regulating fluid balance and energy homeostasis during water deprivation. PMID:26468265

  18. Nitric Oxide Exerts Basal and Insulin-Dependent Anorexigenic Actions in POMC Hypothalamic Neurons.

    PubMed

    Wellhauser, Leigh; Chalmers, Jennifer A; Belsham, Denise D

    2016-04-01

    The arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus represents a key center for the control of appetite and feeding through the regulation of 2 key neuronal populations, notably agouti-related peptide/neuropeptide Y and proopimelanocortin (POMC)/cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript neurons. Altered regulation of these neuronal networks, in particular the dysfunction of POMC neurons upon high-fat consumption, is a major pathogenic mechanism involved in the development of obesity and type 2 diabetes mellitus. Efforts are underway to preserve the integrity or enhance the functionality of POMC neurons in order to prevent or treat these metabolic diseases. Here, we report for the first time that the nitric oxide (NO(-)) donor, sodium nitroprusside (SNP) mediates anorexigenic actions in both hypothalamic tissue and hypothalamic-derived cell models by mediating the up-regulation of POMC levels. SNP increased POMC mRNA in a dose-dependent manner and enhanced α-melanocortin-secreting hormone production and secretion in mHypoA-POMC/GFP-2 cells. SNP also enhanced insulin-driven POMC expression likely by inhibiting the deacetylase activity of sirtuin 1. Furthermore, SNP enhanced insulin-dependent POMC expression, likely by reducing the transcriptional repression of Foxo1 on the POMC gene. Prolonged SNP exposure prevented the development of insulin resistance. Taken together, the NO(-) donor SNP enhances the anorexigenic potential of POMC neurons by promoting its transcriptional expression independent and in cooperation with insulin. Thus, increasing cellular NO(-) levels represents a hormone-independent method of promoting anorexigenic output from the existing POMC neuronal populations and may be advantageous in the fight against these prevalent disorders. PMID:26930171

  19. Effect of food availability and leptin on the physiology and hypothalamic gene expression of the golden spiny mouse: a desert rodent that does not hoard food.

    PubMed

    Gutman, Roee; Hacmon-Keren, Ronit; Choshniak, Itzhak; Kronfeld-Schor, Noga

    2008-12-01

    Food availability and quality in desert habitats are spatially and temporally unpredictable, and animals face periods of food shortage. The golden spiny mouse (Acomys russatus) is an omnivorous desert rodent that does not hoard food, requiring it to withstand such periods by physiological means alone. In response to food restriction, plasma leptin concentrations, core body temperature, and energy expenditure of the spiny mouse decrease significantly after 24 h, and most spiny mice are able to maintain their body mass to approximately 85% of ad libitum for a prolonged period of time. Both 1-day food deprivation and long-term food restriction had a significant effect on body mass and plasma leptin concentrations, which decreased significantly with a high correlation, as well as on the orexigenic agouti-related protein, which increased significantly as a result of the 24-h food deprivation; and on neuropeptide Y (NPY), in which the increase was more pronounced under long-term food restriction. Food restriction and food deprivation had no effect, however, on the anorexigenic pro-opiomelanocortin and cocaine and amphetamine-related transcript. Leptin administration to food-restricted spiny mice did not affect food intake or the rate of decrease in body mass, indicating that it cannot overcome the drive to eat when food is scarce. However, it did result in a significant decrease in NPY levels, and the spiny mice spent less time at low body temperatures compared with PBS-treated golden spiny mice. These results show that in food-restricted golden spiny mice, leptin affects thermogenesis, but not food consumption, and suggest that the thermoregulatory effects of leptin are mediated by NPY. PMID:18843093

  20. Lipopolysacharide Rapidly and Completely Suppresses AgRP Neuron-Mediated Food Intake in Male Mice.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yang; Huang, Ying; Liu, Tiemin; Wu, Hua; Cui, Huxing; Gautron, Laurent

    2016-06-01

    Although Agouti-related peptide (AgRP) neurons play a key role in the regulation of food intake, their contribution to the anorexia caused by proinflammatory insults has yet to be identified. Using a combination of neuroanatomical and pharmacogenetics experiments, this study sought to investigate the importance of AgRP neurons and downstream targets in the anorexia caused by the peripheral administration of a moderate dose of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) (100 μg/kg, ip). First, in the C57/Bl6 mouse, we demonstrated that LPS induced c-fos in select AgRP-innervated brain sites involved in feeding but not in any arcuate proopiomelanocortin neurons. Double immunohistochemistry further showed that LPS selectively induced c-Fos in a large subset of melanocortin 4 receptor-expressing neurons in the lateral parabrachial nucleus. Secondly, we used pharmacogenetics to stimulate the activity of AgRP neurons during the course of LPS-induced anorexia. In AgRP-Cre mice expressing the designer receptor hM3Dq-Gq only in AgRP neurons, the administration of the designer drug clozapine-N-oxide (CNO) induced robust food intake. Strikingly, CNO-mediated food intake was rapidly and completely blunted by the coadministration of LPS. Neuroanatomical experiments further indicated that LPS did not interfere with the ability of CNO to stimulate c-Fos in AgRP neurons. In summary, our findings combined together support the view that the stimulation of select AgRP-innervated brain sites and target neurons, rather than the inhibition of AgRP neurons themselves, is likely to contribute to the rapid suppression of food intake observed during acute bacterial endotoxemia. PMID:27111742

  1. Impact of hypothalamic reactive oxygen species in the regulation of energy metabolism and food intake

    PubMed Central

    Drougard, Anne; Fournel, Audren; Valet, Philippe; Knauf, Claude

    2015-01-01

    Hypothalamus is a key area involved in the control of metabolism and food intake via the integrations of numerous signals (hormones, neurotransmitters, metabolites) from various origins. These factors modify hypothalamic neurons activity and generate adequate molecular and behavioral responses to control energy balance. In this complex integrative system, a new concept has been developed in recent years, that includes reactive oxygen species (ROS) as a critical player in energy balance. ROS are known to act in many signaling pathways in different peripheral organs, but also in hypothalamus where they regulate food intake and metabolism by acting on different types of neurons, including proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and agouti-related protein (AgRP)/neuropeptide Y (NPY) neurons. Hypothalamic ROS release is under the influence of different factors such as pancreatic and gut hormones, adipokines (leptin, apelin,…), neurotransmitters and nutrients (glucose, lipids,…). The sources of ROS production are multiple including NADPH oxidase, but also the mitochondria which is considered as the main ROS producer in the brain. ROS are considered as signaling molecules, but conversely impairment of this neuronal signaling ROS pathway contributes to alterations of autonomic nervous system and neuroendocrine function, leading to metabolic diseases such as obesity and type 2 diabetes. In this review we focus our attention on factors that are able to modulate hypothalamic ROS release in order to control food intake and energy metabolism, and whose deregulations could participate to the development of pathological conditions. This novel insight reveals an original mechanism in the hypothalamus that controls energy balance and identify hypothalamic ROS signaling as a potential therapeutic strategy to treat metabolic disorders. PMID:25759638

  2. Grape Seed Extract Dose-Responsively Decreases Disease Severity in a Rat Model of Mucositis; Concomitantly Enhancing Chemotherapeutic Effectiveness in Colon Cancer Cells

    PubMed Central

    Cheah, Ker Yeaw; Howarth, Gordon Stanley; Bastian, Susan Elaine Putnam

    2014-01-01

    Objective Mucositis is a serious disorder of the gastrointestinal tract that results from cancer chemotherapy. We investigated the effects of increasing grape seed extract doses on the severity of chemotherapy in a rat model and its coincident impact on chemotherapeutic effectiveness in colon cancer cells. Design Female Dark Agouti rats were gavaged with grape seed extract (400–1000 mg/kg) or water (day 3–11) and were injected intraperitoneally with 5-Fluorouracil (150 mg/kg) or saline (control) on day 9 to induce mucositis. Daily metabolic data were collected and rats were sacrificed on day 12. Intestinal tissues were collected for histological and myeloperoxidase analyses. Caco-2 cell viability was examined in response to grape seed extract in combination with 5-Fluorouracil by 3-(4,5-Dimethylthiazol-2yl)-2,5-diphenyl-tetrazolium bromide) assay. Results Compared with 5-Fluorouracil controls, grape seed extract (400–1000 mg/kg) significantly decreased the histological damage score (P<0.05) in the jejunum. Grape seed extract (1000 mg/kg) increased jejunal crypt depth by 25% (P<0.05) in 5-Fluorouracil treated rats compared to 5-Fluorouracil controls, and attenuated the 5-Fluorouracil -induced reduction of mucosal thickness (25%, P<0.05). Grape seed extract (600 mg/kg) decreased myeloperoxidase activity by 55% (P<0.01) compared to 5-Fluorouracil controls. Grape seed extract was more effective at ameliorating 5-Fluorouracil induced intestinal injury, with effects most pronounced in the proximal jejunum. Grape seed extract (10–25 ug/mL) significantly enhanced the growth-inhibitory effects of 5-Fluorouracil by 26% (P<0.05) in Caco-2 cells and was more potent than 5-Fluorouracil at 50–100 µg/mL. Conclusion Grape seed extract may represent a new therapeutic option to decrease the symptoms of intestinal mucositis while concurrently impacting on the viability of colon cancer cells. PMID:24465501

  3. The positive effects of growth hormone-releasing peptide-6 on weight gain and fat mass accrual depend on the insulin/glucose status.

    PubMed

    Granado, Miriam; García-Cáceres, Cristina; Frago, Laura M; Argente, Jesús; Chowen, Julie A

    2010-05-01

    Ghrelin and GH secretagogues, including GH-releasing peptide (GHRP)-6, stimulate food intake and adiposity. Because insulin modulates the hypothalamic response to GH secretagogues and acts synergistically with ghrelin on lipogenesis in vitro, we analyzed whether insulin plays a role in the metabolic effects of GHRP-6 in vivo. Streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats received saline, GHRP-6, insulin, or insulin plus GHRP-6 once daily for 8 wk. Rats receiving saline suffered hyperglycemia, hyperphagia, polydipsia, and weight loss. Insulin, but not GHRP-6, improved these parameters (P < 0.001 for all), as well as the diabetes-induced increase in hypothalamic mRNA levels of neuropeptide Y and agouti-related peptide and decrease in proopiomelanocortin. Cocaine amphetamine-related transcript mRNA levels were also reduced in diabetic rats, with GHRP-6 inducing a further decrease (P < 0.03) and insulin an increase. Diabetic rats receiving insulin plus GHRP-6 gained more weight and had increased epididymal fat mass and serum leptin levels compared with all other groups (P < 0.001). In epididymal adipose tissue, diabetic rats injected with saline had smaller adipocytes (P < 0.001), decreased fatty acid synthase (FAS; P < 0.001), and glucose transporter-4 (P < 0.001) and increased hormone sensitive lipase (P < 0.001) and proliferator-activated receptor-gamma mRNA levels (P < 0.01). Insulin normalized these parameters to control values. GHRP-6 treatment increased FAS and glucose transporter-4 gene expression and potentiated insulin's effect on epididymal fat mass, adipocyte size (P < 0.001), FAS (P < 0.001), and glucose transporter-4 (P < 0.05). In conclusion, GHRP-6 and insulin exert an additive effect on weight gain and visceral fat mass accrual in diabetic rats, indicating that some of GHRP-6's metabolic effects depend on the insulin/glucose status. PMID:20219977

  4. Enhanced susceptibility of ovaries from obese mice to 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene-induced DNA damage

    PubMed Central

    Ganesan, Shanthi; Nteeba, Jackson; Keating, Aileen F.

    2014-01-01

    7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene (DMBA) depletes ovarian follicles and induces DNA damage in extra-ovarian tissues, thus, we investigated ovarian DMBA-induced DNA damage. Additionally, since obesity is associated with increased offspring birth defect incidence, we hypothesized that a DMBA-induced DNA damage response (DDR) is compromised in ovaries from obese females. Wild type (lean) non agouti (a/a) and KK.Cg-Ay/J heterozygote (obese) mice were dosed with sesame oil or DMBA (1mg/kg; intraperitoneal injection) at 18 wks of age, for 14 days. Total ovarian RNA and protein were isolated and abundance of Ataxia telangiectasia mutated (Atm), X-ray repair complementing defective repair in chinese hamster cells 6 (Xrcc6), Breast cancer type 1 (Brca1), Rad 51 homolog (Rad51), Poly [ADP-ribose] polymerase 1 (Parp1) and Protein kinase, DNA-activated, catalytic polypeptide (Prkdc) were quantified by RT-PCR or Western blot. Phosphorylated histone H2AX (γH2AX) level was determined by Western blotting. Obesity decreased (P < 0.05) basal protein abundance of PRKDC and BRCA1 proteins but increased (P < 0.05) γH2AX and PARP1 proteins. Ovarian ATM, XRCC6, PRKDC, RAD51 and PARP1 proteins were increased (P < 0.05) by DMBA exposure in lean mice. A blunted DMBA-induced increase (P < 0.05) in XRCC6, PRKDC, RAD51 and BRCA1 was observed in ovaries from obese mice, relative to lean counterparts. Taken together, DMBA exposure induced γH2AX as well as the ovarian DDR, supporting that DMBA causes ovarian DNA damage. Additionally, ovarian DDR was partially attenuated in obese females raising concern that obesity may be an additive factor during chemical-induced ovotoxicity. PMID:25448685

  5. Sleeve Gastrectomy Induces Loss of Weight and Fat Mass in Obese Rats, but Does Not Affect Leptin Sensitivity

    PubMed Central

    Stefater, Margaret A; Pérez-Tilve, Diego; Chambers, Adam P; Wilson-Pérez, Hilary E; Sandoval, Darleen A; Berger, José; Toure, Mouhamadoul; Tschöep, Matthias; Woods, Stephen C; Seeley, Randy J

    2010-01-01

    Background & Aims Surgical intervention produces sustainable weight loss and metabolic improvement in obese individuals. Vertical sleeve gastrectomy (VSG) produces dramatic, sustained weight loss; we investigated whether these changes result from improved sensitivity to leptin. Methods VSG was performed in Long-Evans rats with diet-induced obesity. Naïve or sham-operated rats, fed either ad libitum or pair-fed with the VSG group, were used as controls. Following surgery, body weights and food intake were monitored. We investigated energy expenditure, meal patterns, leptin sensitivity, and expression of pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC)/agouti-related peptide (AgRP)/neuropeptide Y (NPY) in the hypothalamus of the rats. Results We observed sustained losses in weight and body fat in male and female rats after VSG. Weight loss persisted after the disappearance of a transient, post-surgical food intake reduction. Resting energy expenditure was similar between control and VSG rats. VSG rats maintained their reduced body weights. However, they responded to a chronic food restriction challenge by overeating, which resulted in pre-restriction, rather than pre-VSG, body weights. Consistent with lower adiposity, VSG decreased plasma leptin levels. Although VSG slightly improved leptin’s anorectic action, the response was comparable to that observed in controls matched for adiposity by caloric restriction. Changes in hypothalamic neuropeptide expression were consistent with the lower body weight and lower leptin levels but cannot account for the sustained weight loss. Conclusions VSG causes sustained reduction in body weight, which results from loss of fat mass. The maintenance of weight loss observed did not result from changes in sensitivity to leptin. PMID:20226189

  6. Essential role of UCP1 modulating the central effects of thyroid hormones on energy balance

    PubMed Central

    Alvarez-Crespo, Mayte; Csikasz, Robert I.; Martínez-Sánchez, Noelia; Diéguez, Carlos; Cannon, Barbara; Nedergaard, Jan; López, Miguel

    2016-01-01

    Objective Classically, metabolic effects of thyroid hormones (THs) have been considered to be peripherally mediated, i.e. different tissues in the body respond directly to thyroid hormones with an increased metabolism. An alternative view is that the metabolic effects are centrally regulated. We have examined here the degree to which prolonged, centrally infused triiodothyronine (T3) could in itself induce total body metabolic effects and the degree to which brown adipose tissue (BAT) thermogenesis was essential for such effects, by examining uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1) KO mice. Methods Wildtype and UPC1 KO mice were centrally-treated with T3 by using minipumps. Metabolic measurements were analyzed by indirect calorimetry and expression analysis by RT-PCR or western blot. BAT morphology and histology were studied by immunohistochemistry. Results We found that central T3-treatment led to reduced levels of hypothalamic AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) and elevated body temperature (0.7 °C). UCP1 was essential for the T3-induced increased rate of energy expenditure, which was only observable at thermoneutrality and notably only during the active phase, for the increased body weight loss, for the increased hypothalamic levels of neuropeptide Y (NPY) and agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and for the increased food intake induced by central T3-treatment. Prolonged central T3-treatment also led to recruitment of BAT and britening/beiging (“browning”) of inguinal white adipose tissue (iWAT). Conclusions We conclude that UCP1 is essential for mediation of the central effects of thyroid hormones on energy balance, and we suggest that similar UCP1-dependent effects may underlie central energy balance effects of other agents. PMID:27069867

  7. Current and investigational antiobesity agents and obesity therapeutic treatment targets.

    PubMed

    Bays, Harold E

    2004-08-01

    Public health efforts and current antiobesity agents have not controlled the increasing epidemic of obesity. Investigational antiobesity agents consist of 1) central nervous system agents that affect neurotransmitters or neural ion channels, including antidepressants (bupropion), selective serotonin 2c receptor agonists, antiseizure agents (topiramate, zonisamide), some dopamine antagonists, and cannabinoid-1 receptor antagonists (rimonabant); 2) leptin/insulin/central nervous system pathway agents, including leptin analogues, leptin transport and/or leptin receptor promoters, ciliary neurotrophic factor (Axokine), neuropeptide Y and agouti-related peptide antagonists, proopiomelanocortin and cocaine and amphetamine regulated transcript promoters, alpha-melanocyte-stimulating hormone analogues, melanocortin-4 receptor agonists, and agents that affect insulin metabolism/activity, which include protein-tyrosine phosphatase-1B inhibitors, peroxisome proliferator activated receptor-gamma receptor antagonists, short-acting bromocriptine (ergoset), somatostatin agonists (octreotide), and adiponectin; 3) gastrointestinal-neural pathway agents, including those that increase cholecystokinin activity, increase glucagon-like peptide-1 activity (extendin 4, liraglutide, dipeptidyl peptidase IV inhibitors), and increase protein YY3-36 activity and those that decrease ghrelin activity, as well as amylin analogues (pramlintide); 4) agents that may increase resting metabolic rate ("selective" beta-3 stimulators/agonist, uncoupling protein homologues, and thyroid receptor agonists); and 5) other more diverse agents, including melanin concentrating hormone antagonists, phytostanol analogues, functional oils, P57, amylase inhibitors, growth hormone fragments, synthetic analogues of dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate, antagonists of adipocyte 11B-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type 1 activity, corticotropin-releasing hormone agonists, inhibitors of fatty acid synthesis, carboxypeptidase

  8. Identification of differentially expressed genes in hypothalamus of chicken during cold stress.

    PubMed

    Chen, X Y; Li, R; Wang, M; Geng, Z Y

    2014-01-01

    In order to discover the mechanism of cold stress and identify differentially expressed genes in hypothalamus during cold stress, 4 weeks of age Huainan partridge chickens, Chinese indigenous breed, were chosen for 24 h cold stress and then hypothalamus were isolated and labeled by reverse transcription reaction for cDNA. Labeled cDNA were hybridized with cDNA microarray. After scanning and image processing, the different gene expression profiling of hypothalamus and normal control was investigated. The differentially expressed genes included 334 down-regulated genes and 543 up-regulated genes. In these differentially regulated genes, myosin heavy chain polypeptide 11 (MYH11), light chain polypeptide 9 (MYL9) and tenascin-Y (TNXB), etc., which involved in muscle activity were significantly down-regulated. Genes like cholecystokinin (CCK), neuropeptide Y (NPY), neuropeptide Y receptor 5 (NPY5R), hypocretin receptor 2 (HCRTR2) and hypocretin neuropeptide precursor (HCRT) which responsible for regulation of feeding behavior were significantly up-regulated. In addition, genes responsible for lipid synthesis, like apolipoprotein (APOB) and agouti related protein homolog (AGRP), were also up-regulated. Through pathway analysis using the Kyoto Encyclopedia of Gene and Genomics, during 24 h cold stress, the neuroactive ligand-receptor interaction was firstly initiated in chickens for stimulation of central nervus for feed intake. Adipocytokine signaling pathway was in high activation for supplementation of body energy. Jak-STAT, Ca(2+) signaling pathway and other biological reactions were also initiated in response to cold stress. The biological pathways participated in cold stress would provide important information for clarify the mechanism of cold stress and the differentially expressed genes would give much help for screening of candidate genes in breeding of cold stress resistant lines. PMID:24407606

  9. Glucocorticoids inhibited hypothalamic target of rapamycin in high fat diet-fed chicks.

    PubMed

    Liu, L; Wang, X; Jiao, H; Zhao, J; Lin, H

    2015-09-01

    The present study was conducted with broiler chicks exposed to dexamethasone (DEX) to explore its effects on hypothalamic target of rapamycin (TOR) signaling and regulating appetite in diets containing different energy levels. At 5 d age, 48 chicks were divided into one of 4 groups: high-fat diet (HFD) or low-fat diet (LFD) and intracerebroventricular (ICV) injected with either dexamethasone (DEX; 4 μg/2 μL) or saline at 10 d age. The results showed that DEX significantly inhibited gene expression of cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcripts (CART), melanocortin receptor 4 (MC4R), and corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH), and inhibited the protein level of the phospho-TOR compared with the control in HFD-fed chicks (P<0.05) but not in LFD-fed chicks (P>0.05). After DEX treatment, hypothalamic agouti-related peptide levels were decreased significantly in HFD-fed chicks (P<0.05) but not in LFD-fed chicks (P>0.05). Compared to the control, DEX-treated chicks did not present any significant changes in neuropeptide Y gene expression with either HFD or LFD (P>0.05), but pro-opiomelanocortin levels were depressed by ICV DEX treatment with both diets (P<0.05). In conclusion, glucocorticoids (GC) downregulated hypothalamic gene expression of CART, CRH, and MC4R in HFD-fed chicks, suggesting that the regulatory network formed by these genes is associated with the appetite control during stress. The TOR pathway may be involved in the regulation of GC on appetite-related genes. PMID:26188033

  10. Rolling Nagoya mouse strain (PROD-rol/rol) with classic piebald mutation.

    PubMed

    Yoshimoto, Takuro; Aoyama, Yo; Kim, Tae Yeon; Niimi, Kimie; Takahashi, Eiki; Itakura, Chitoshi

    2014-08-01

    Ataxic rolling Nagoya (PROD-rol/rol) mice, which carry a mutation in the α1 subunit of the Cav2.1 channel (Cacna1a) gene, were discovered in 1969. They show white spots on agouti coat and have a mutation in the piebald spotting (s) locus. However, mutation analysis of the s locus encoding the endothelin receptor type B (Ednrb) gene in PROD-rol/rol mice had not been performed. Here, we examined the genomic and mRNA sequences of the Ednrb gene in PROD-rol/rol and wild-type rolling Nagoya (PROD-s/s) and studied the expression patterns of Ednrb and Cacna1a genes in these mice in comparison with C57BL/6J mice. Polymerase chain reaction analyses revealed two silent nucleotide substitutions in the coding region and insertion of a retroposon-like element in intron 1 of the Ednrb gene. Expression analyses demonstrated similar localizations and levels of Ednrb and Cacna1a expression in the colon between PROD-rol/rol and PROD-s/s mice, but the expression levels of both genes were diminished compared with C57BL/6J mice. Microsatellite genotyping showed that at least particular regions of chromosome 14 proximal to the Ednrb locus of the PROD strain were derived from Japanese fancy piebald mice. These results indicated that PROD-rol/rol mice have two mutant genes, Ednrb and Cacna1a. As no PROD strain had an intact Ednrb gene, using congenic rolling mice would better serve to examine rolling Nagoya-type Cav2.1 channel dysfunctions. PMID:24758835

  11. Food intake inhibition in rainbow trout induced by activation of serotonin 5-HT2C receptors is associated with increases in POMC, CART and CRF mRNA abundance in hypothalamus.

    PubMed

    Pérez-Maceira, Jorge J; Otero-Rodiño, Cristina; Mancebo, María J; Soengas, José L; Aldegunde, Manuel

    2016-04-01

    In rainbow trout, the food intake inhibition induced by serotonin occurs through 5-HT2C and 5-HT1A receptors, though the mechanisms involved are still unknown. Therefore, we assessed if a direct stimulation of 5-HT2C and 5-HT1A serotonin receptors (resulting in decreased food intake in rainbow trout), affects gene expression of neuropeptides involved in the control of food intake, such as pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC), cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART), corticotrophin releasing factor (CRF), and agouti-related peptide (AgRP). In a first set of experiments, the injection of the 5-HT2C receptor agonists MK212 (60 μg kg(-1) icv) and WAY 161503 (1 mg kg(-1) ip), and of the 5-HT1A receptor agonist 8-OH-DPAT (1 mg kg(-1) ip and 30 μg kg(-1) icv) induced food intake inhibition. In a second set of experiments, we observed that the injection of MK212 or WAY 161503 (1 and 3 mg kg(-1)) significantly increased hypothalamic POMC mRNA abundance. CART mRNA abundance in hypothalamus was enhanced by treatment with MK212 and unaffected by WAY 161503. The administration of the 5-HT1A receptor agonist 8-OH-DPAT did not induce any significant variation in the hypothalamic POMC or CART mRNA levels. CRF mRNA abundance was only affected by MK212 that increased hypothalamic values. Finally, hypothalamic AgRP mRNA abundance was only evaluated with the agonist 5-HT2C MK212 resulting in no significant effects. The results show that the reduction in food intake mediated by 5-HT2C receptors is associated with increases in hypothalamic POMC, CART and CRF mRNA abundance. PMID:26832922

  12. Inhibition of melanocortin 1 receptor slows melanoma growth, reduces tumor heterogeneity and increases survival.

    PubMed

    Kansal, Rita G; McCravy, Matthew S; Basham, Jacob H; Earl, Joshua A; McMurray, Stacy L; Starner, Chelsey J; Whitt, Michael A; Albritton, Lorraine M

    2016-05-01

    Melanoma risk is increased in patients with mutations of melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R) yet the basis for the increased risk remains unknown. Here we report in vivo evidence supporting a critical role for MC1R in regulating melanoma tumor growth and determining overall survival time. Inhibition of MC1R by its physiologically relevant competitive inhibitor, agouti signaling protein (ASIP), reduced melanin synthesis and morphological heterogeneity in murine B16-F10 melanoma cells. In the lungs of syngeneic C57BL/6 mice, mCherry-marked, ASIP-secreting lung tumors inhibited MC1R on neighboring tumors lacking ASIP in a dose dependent manner as evidenced by a proportional loss of pigment in tumors from mice injected with 1:1, 3:1 and 4:1 mixtures of parental B16-F10 to ASIP-expressing tumor cells. ASIP-expressing B16-F10 cells formed poorly pigmented tumors in vivo that correlated with a 20% longer median survival than those bearing parental B16-F10 tumors (p=0.0005). Mice injected with 1:1 mixtures also showed survival benefit (p=0.0054), whereas injection of a 4:1 mixture showed no significant difference in survival. The longer survival time of mice bearing ASIP-expressing tumors correlated with a significantly slower growth rate than parental B16-F10 tumors as judged by quantification of numbers of tumors and total tumor load (p=0.0325), as well as a more homogeneous size and morphology of ASIP-expressing lung tumors. We conclude that MC1R plays an important role in regulating melanoma growth and morphology. Persistent inhibition of MC1R provided a significant survival advantage resulting in part from slower tumor growth, establishing MC1R as a compelling new molecular target for metastatic melanoma. PMID:27028866

  13. Discovery of Gene Sources for Economic Traits in Hanwoo by Whole-genome Resequencing

    PubMed Central

    Shin, Younhee; Jung, Ho-jin; Jung, Myunghee; Yoo, Seungil; Subramaniyam, Sathiyamoorthy; Markkandan, Kesavan; Kang, Jun-Mo; Rai, Rajani; Park, Junhyung; Kim, Jong-Joo

    2016-01-01

    Hanwoo, a Korean native cattle (Bos taurus coreana), has great economic value due to high meat quality. Also, the breed has genetic variations that are associated with production traits such as health, disease resistance, reproduction, growth as well as carcass quality. In this study, next generation sequencing technologies and the availability of an appropriate reference genome were applied to discover a large amount of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in ten Hanwoo bulls. Analysis of whole-genome resequencing generated a total of 26.5 Gb data, of which 594,716,859 and 592,990,750 reads covered 98.73% and 93.79% of the bovine reference genomes of UMD 3.1 and Btau 4.6.1, respectively. In total, 2,473,884 and 2,402,997 putative SNPs were discovered, of which 1,095,922 (44.3%) and 982,674 (40.9%) novel SNPs were discovered against UMD3.1 and Btau 4.6.1, respectively. Among the SNPs, the 46,301 (UMD 3.1) and 28,613 SNPs (Btau 4.6.1) that were identified as Hanwoo-specific SNPs were included in the functional genes that may be involved in the mechanisms of milk production, tenderness, juiciness, marbling of Hanwoo beef and yellow hair. Most of the Hanwoo-specific SNPs were identified in the promoter region, suggesting that the SNPs influence differential expression of the regulated genes relative to the relevant traits. In particular, the non-synonymous (ns) SNPs found in CORIN, which is a negative regulator of Agouti, might be a causal variant to determine yellow hair of Hanwoo. Our results will provide abundant genetic sources of variation to characterize Hanwoo genetics and for subsequent breeding. PMID:26954201

  14. The role of ghrelin in weight-regulation disorders: implications in clinical practice.

    PubMed

    Solomou, Solomis; Korbonits, Márta

    2014-01-01

    Ghrelin, an orexigenic protein with a unique lipid chain modification, is considered to be an important gut-brain signal for appetite control and energy balance. The ghrelin receptor, growth-hormone secretagogue receptor type 1a, is able to bind acylated ghrelin. The first recognised effect of ghrelin was the induction of growth hormone release from the somatotroph cells of the anterior pituitary. Moreover, by acting on vagal afferents or centrally, ghrelin can activate hypothalamic arcuate neurons that secrete the orexigenic peptides neuropeptide Y and agouti-related peptide, and inhibit the anorexigenic neurons secreting pro-opiomelanocortin and α-melanocyte-stimulating hormone. The orexigenic signalling pathway of ghrelin involves adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase. It has been proposed that ghrelin can also increase dopaminergic transmission from the ventral tegmental area to the nucleus accumbens, leading to augmentation of afferent reward signals. Present evidence suggests that ghrelin plays an important role in obesity, eating disorders, and cachexia, as well as in regulating appetite and energy balance in healthy individuals. In pathological states, ghrelin can be lower than normal as is seen in obese individuals, or can be higher than normal as has been reported for Prader-Willi syndrome, anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and certain types of cachexia. In the future, the application of compounds targeting the ghrelin pathway could involve the use of pharmacotherapies of ghrelin agonists, antagonists or inverse agonists, neutralisation of ghrelin by vaccines and spiegelmers, desacyl ghrelin analogues, as well as inhibitors of the GOAT enzyme which attaches the lipid modification to desacyl ghrelin to synthetise ghrelin. PMID:25555181

  15. Genetic influences on survival time after severe hemorrhage in inbred rat strains.

    PubMed

    Klemcke, Harold G; Joe, Bina; Calderon, Mariam L; Rose, Rajiv; Oh, Thomas; Aden, James; Ryan, Kathy L

    2011-06-28

    To find a genetic basis for differential ability to survive severe hemorrhage, we previously showed eightfold differences in survival times among inbred rat strains. We assumed that rat strains had similar normalized blood volumes (NBV; ml/100 g body wt). As NBV might vary among strains and constitute one genetic variable affecting survival time to hemorrhage, in experiment 1 of the current studies we first measured total blood volumes and calculated NBV in specific inbred rat strains (Brown Norway/Medical College of Wisconsin, BN; Dark Agouti, DA; Fawn Hooded Hypertensive, FHH; Lewis, LEW; and Dahl Salt-Sensitive, SS) previously found to be divergent in survival time. NBV differed by 20% (P < 0.01; BN > SS > FHH = LEW = DA) and had a heritability (h(2)) of 0.56. Hence, differential survival times in our previously published study might reflect strain-dependent differences in NBV. Then studies were conducted wherein rats were catheterized and, ∼24 h later, 47% of their blood volume was removed; these rats were observed for a maximum of 4 h. In experiment 2, blood volumes were measured the day prior to hemorrhage. Percent survival and survival time did not differ among strains. To obviate possible confounding effects of blood volume determination, in experiment 3 the average NBV for each strain was used to determine hemorrhage volumes. Percent survival (P < 0.01) and survival times (P < 0.001) were different with DA demonstrating the best (62.5%, 190 ± 29 min) and BN the worst (0%, 52 ± 5 min) survival responses. These data indicate that both blood volume and survival time after hemorrhage in rats are heritable quantitative traits, and continue to suggest that genetic assessment of these phenotypes might lead to novel therapeutics to improve survival to hemorrhage. PMID:21487033

  16. Melanocortin antagonism ameliorates muscle wasting and inflammation in chronic kidney disease

    PubMed Central

    Cheung, Wai W.

    2012-01-01

    Aberrant melanocortin signaling has been implicated in the pathogenesis of wasting in chronic kidney disease (CKD). Previously, we demonstrated that agouti-related peptide (AgRP), a melenocortin-4 receptor antagonist, reduced CKD-associated cachexia in CKD mice. Our previous studies with AgRP utilized dual energy X-ray (DXA) densitometry to assess the body composition in mice (Cheung W, Kuo HJ, Markison S, Chen C, Foster AC, Marks DL, Mak RH. J Am Soc Nephrol 18: 2517–2524, 2007; Cheung W, Yu PX, Little BM, Cone RD, Marks DL, Mak RH. J Clin Invest 115: 1659–1665, 2005). DXA is unable to differentiate water content in mice, and fluid retention in CKD may lead to an overestimate of lean mass. In this study, we employed quantitative magnetic resonance technique to evaluate body composition change following central administration of AgRP in a CKD mouse model. AgRP treatment improved energy expenditure, total body mass, fat mass, and lean body mass in CKD mouse. We also investigated the effect of CKD-associated cachexia on the signaling pathways leading to wasting in skeletal muscle, as well as whether these changes can be ameliorated by central administration of AgRP. AgRP treatment caused an overall decrease in proinflammatory cytokines, which may be one important mechanism of its effects. Muscle wasting in CKD may be due to the activation of proteolytic pathways as well as inhibition of myogenesis and muscle regeneration processes. Our results suggest that these aberrant pathological pathways leading to muscle wasting in CKD mice were ameliorated by central administration of AgRP. PMID:22914778

  17. Novel action of 3,4-DAA ameliorating acute liver allograft injury.

    PubMed

    Sun, Qing-Feng; Ding, Ji-Guang; Sheng, Ji-Fang; Zhu, Man-Hua; Li, Jun-Jie; Sheng, Zi-Ke; Tang, Xiao-Feng

    2011-12-01

    The anti-allergic drug, N-(3,4-dimethoxycinnamonyl) anthranilic acid (3,4-DAA), is a synthetic anthranilic acid derivative that has been used therapeutically in Japan for many years. In this study, to investigate the effects of 3,4-DAA in allograft immunorejection model, liver orthotopic transplants were performed using inbred male Dark Agouti donors and Lewis rat recipients (allografts). The levels of indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenases (IDO) enzymic activities in five groups, allografts (control), dimethyl sulphoxide-treated group (vehicle control), 200 mg·kg(-1) ·day(-1) of 3,4-DAA-treated group and 200 mg·kg(-1) ·day(-1) of 3,4-DAA + 5 mg·ml(-1) of 1-methyl-D-tryptophan (1-MT)-treated group were confirmed by determination of L-kynurenine (L-Kyn) concentrations. The serum alanine aminotransferase levels in 3,4-DAA-treated rats significantly decreased compared with those in mock and control group, whereas treatment of 1-MT in allografts led to the opposite effect. Administration of 3,4-DAA reduced histological severity of allograft immunorejection, decreased serum levels of cytokines tumour necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α) and interferon-gamma (IFN-γ), and raised serum levels of interleukin-10 (IL-10), suggesting that 3,4-DAA has both anti-inflammatory and anti-immunorejection properties through IDO in immune regulation and may therefore be useful in filling an unmet need, in the treatment of allograft immunorejection. PMID:21932299

  18. Genomics of estradiol-3-sulfate action in the ovine fetal hypothalamus.

    PubMed

    Rabaglino, Maria Belen; Richards, Elaine; Denslow, Nancy; Keller-Wood, Maureen; Wood, Charles E

    2012-07-01

    In fetal sheep during late gestation sulfoconjugated estrogens in plasma reach a concentration 40-100 times greater than unconjugated estrogens. The objective of the present study was to determine the genomics of estradiol-3-sulfate (E(2)S) action in the ovine fetal brain. The hypothesis was that E(2)S stimulates genes involved in the neuroendocrine pathways that direct or facilitate fetal development at the end of gestation. Four sets of chronically catheterized ovine twin fetuses were studied (gestational age: 120-127 days gestation) with one infused with E(2)S intracerebroventricularly (1 mg/day) and the other remaining untreated (control). After euthanasia, mRNA samples were extracted from fetal brains. Only hypothalamic samples were employed for this study given the important function of this brain region in the control of the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal axis. Microarray analysis was performed following the Agilent protocol for one-color 8 × 15 microarrays, designed for Ovis aries. A total of 363 known genes were significantly upregulated by the E(2)S treatment (P < 0.05). Network and enrichment analyses were performed using the Cytoscape/Bingo software, and the results validated by quantitative real-time PCR. The main overrepresented biological processes resulting from this analysis were feeding behavior, hypoxia response, and transforming growth factor signaling. Notably, the genes involved in the feeding behavior (neuropeptide Y and agouti-related protein) were the most strongly induced by the E(2)S treatment. In conclusion, E(2)S may be an important component of the mechanism for activating orexigenic, hypoxia responsiveness and neuroprotective pathways in the lamb as it approaches postnatal life. PMID:22570439

  19. Recurrent Evolution of Melanism in South American Felids

    PubMed Central

    Schneider, Alexsandra; Henegar, Corneliu; Day, Kenneth; Absher, Devin; Napolitano, Constanza; Silveira, Leandro; David, Victor A.; O’Brien, Stephen J.; Menotti-Raymond, Marilyn; Barsh, Gregory S.; Eizirik, Eduardo

    2015-01-01

    Morphological variation in natural populations is a genomic test bed for studying the interface between molecular evolution and population genetics, but some of the most interesting questions involve non-model organisms that lack well annotated reference genomes. Many felid species exhibit polymorphism for melanism but the relative roles played by genetic drift, natural selection, and interspecies hybridization remain uncertain. We identify mutations of Agouti signaling protein (ASIP) or the Melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R) as independent causes of melanism in three closely related South American species: the pampas cat (Leopardus colocolo), the kodkod (Leopardus guigna), and Geoffroy’s cat (Leopardus geoffroyi). To assess population level variation in the regions surrounding the causative mutations we apply genomic resources from the domestic cat to carry out clone-based capture and targeted resequencing of 299 kb and 251 kb segments that contain ASIP and MC1R, respectively, from 54 individuals (13–21 per species), achieving enrichment of ~500–2500-fold and ~150x coverage. Our analysis points to unique evolutionary histories for each of the three species, with a strong selective sweep in the pampas cat, a distinctive but short melanism-specific haplotype in the Geoffroy’s cat, and reduced nucleotide diversity for both ancestral and melanism-bearing chromosomes in the kodkod. These results reveal an important role for natural selection in a trait of longstanding interest to ecologists, geneticists, and the lay community, and provide a platform for comparative studies of morphological variation in other natural populations. PMID:25695801

  20. Impact of glucose infusion on the structural and functional characteristics of adipose tissue and on hypothalamic gene expression for appetite regulatory neuropeptides in the sheep fetus during late gestation

    PubMed Central

    Mühlhäusler, BS; Adam, CL; Marrocco, EM; Findlay, PA; Roberts, CT; McFarlane, JR; Kauter, KG; McMillen, IC

    2005-01-01

    In the present study, our aim was to determine whether intrafetal glucose infusion increases fetal adiposity, synthesis and secretion of leptin and regulates gene expression of the ‘appetite regulatory’ neuropeptides neuropepetide Y (NPY), agouti-related peptide (AGRP), pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) and cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART) and receptors (leptin receptor (OB-Rb) and melancortin 3 receptor (MC3R)) within the fetal hypothalamus. Glucose (50% dextrose in saline) or saline was infused (7.5 ml h−1) into fetal sheep between 130 and 140 days gestation (term = 150 ± 3 days gestation). Glucose infusion increased circulating glucose and insulin concentrations, mean lipid locule size (532.8 ± 3.3 μm2 versus 456.7 ± 14.8 μm2) and total unilocular fat mass (11.7 ± 0.6 g versus 8.9 ± 0.6 g) of the perirenal fat depot. The expression of OB-Rb mRNA was higher in the ventromedial nucleus compared to the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus in both glucose and saline infused fetuses (F= 8.04; P < 0.01) and there was a positive correlation between expression of OB-Rb and MC3R mRNA in the arcuate nucleus (r= 0.81; P < 0.005). Glucose infusion increased mRNA expression for POMC, but not for the anorectic neuropeptide CART, or the orexigenic neuropeptides NPY and AGRP, in the arcuate nucleus of the fetal hypothalamus. These findings demonstrate that increased circulating glucose and insulin regulate gene expression of the neuropeptides within the fetal hypothalamus that are part of the neural network regulating energy balance in adult life. PMID:15661821

  1. Experimental heart transplantation: effect of cyclosporine on expression and activity of metzincins.

    PubMed

    Berthier, C C; Pally, C; Weckbecker, G; Raulf, F; Rehrauer, H; Wagner, U; Le Hir, M; Marti, H P

    2009-04-18

    Metzincins, such as matrix metalloproteases (MMP), and extracellular matrix (ECM) proteins are differentially regulated in inflammation. We hypothesised that metzincins are also dysregulated in experimental acute cardiac allograft rejection. We investigated the Dark Agouti-to-Lewis (DA-to-Lew) rat model of acute cardiac allograft rejection. Cyclosporine (CsA) (7.5 mg/kg/d) was given from transplantation to sacrifice (day +5). At that time, mRNA levels were analysed by Affymetrix genechip and quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (qRTPCR). MMP protein and activities were analysed by immunohistology, fluorometry, zymography and Western blots. In untreated rejected DA allografts, mRNA levels of MMP-2/-7/-9/-/12-/14, a disintegrin and metalloprotease (ADAM)-17, tissue inhibitor of metalloprotease (TIMP)-1/-3 were increased, whereas MMP-11/-16/-24 and TIMP-2/-4 were lowered compared to native DA hearts. With respect to these untreated allografts, CsA lowered mRNA levels of MMP-7, TIMP-1/-3 (TIMP-2/-4 remained relatively low) and ADAM17, but augmented mRNA levels of MMP-11/-16/-23 and of many ECM genes. Immunohistology showed increased staining of MMP-2 in acute rejection (AR). Overall MMP activity was augmented in both transplanted groups, but CsA reduced MMP-9 activity and MMP-14 production. Taken together, MMP and TIMP were upregulated during acute AR. CsA ameliorated histology of rejection but showed potential pro-fibrotic effects. Thus, MMP and TIMP may play a role in acute cardiac allograft rejection, and beneficial modification of the MMP-ECM balance requires interventions beyond CsA. PMID:19418307

  2. An N-(alkylcarbonyl)anthranilic acid derivative prolongs cardiac allograft survival synergistically with cyclosporine A in a high-responder rat model.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jibing; Xia, Junjie; Axelsson, Bengt; Fritzson, Ingela; Ekberg, Henrik; Törngren, Marie; Qi, Zhongquan

    2010-08-01

    We investigated the immunosuppressive effects of the dihydroortate dehydrogenase (DHODH) inhibitor compounds ABR-222417 and ABR-224050 from Active Biotech (Sweden). We verified the inhibitory effects of these compounds on the proliferation of CD4(+) and CD8(+) T-cells in vivo by using superantigen staphylococcus enterotoxin A (SEA)-mediated proliferation test. To evaluate their efficacy, the compounds were screened in a low-responder heart allograft transplantation model in rats [heart from Piebald Virol Glaxo (PVG) transplanted to Dark Agouti (DA)]. The immunosuppressive effects of the compounds were then investigated in a high-responder model (DA to PVG). Treatment with ABR-222417 (30 mg/kg) was more efficient than that with ABR-224050 (10 mg/kg), and the former provided a longer graft median survival time (MST, 29.5 days) than the latter (MST, 18.5 days). Furthermore, there was a marked increase in graft survival time (53 days) when low doses of ABR-222417 and cyclosporine A (CsA) were used in combination. No sign of tolerability problems was detected using this combination or when ABR-222417 was used singly at a higher dose. Furthermore, T-cell proliferation studies in vitro support that the anti proliferative effect of ABR-222417 is caused by inhibition of de novo pyrimidine synthesis, which is the consequence of DHODH inhibition. These results show that ABR-222417 had marked immunosuppressive effects on the heart allograft transplantation and that it exerts an even more powerful inhibitory effect on graft rejection when used in combination with CsA, with good tolerability. PMID:20553870

  3. Maternal and postweaning folic acid supplementation interact to influence body weight, insulin resistance, and food intake regulatory gene expression in rat offspring in a sex-specific manner.

    PubMed

    Huot, Pedro S P; Ly, Anna; Szeto, Ignatius M Y; Reza-López, Sandra A; Cho, Daniel; Kim, Young-In; Anderson, G Harvey

    2016-04-01

    Maternal intake of multivitamins or folic acid above the basal dietary requirement alters the growth and metabolic trajectory of rat offspring. We hypothesized that a modest increase in the folic acid content of maternal diets would alter the offspring's metabolic phenotype, and that these effects could be corrected by matching the folic acid content of the offspring's diet with that of the maternal diet. Female Sprague-Dawley rats were placed on a control or a 2.5× folic acid-supplemented diet prior to mating and during pregnancy and lactation. At weaning, pups from each maternal diet group were randomized to the control or to the 2.5× folic acid-supplemented diet for 25 weeks. Male pups from dams fed the folic acid-supplemented diet were 3.7% heavier than those from control-fed dams and had lower mRNA expression for leptin receptor Obrb isoform (Lepr) (11%) and Agouti-related protein (Agrp) (14%). In contrast, female pups from folic acid-supplemented dams were 5% lighter than those from control-fed dams and had lower proopiomelanocortin (Pomc) (42%), Lepr (32%), and Agrp (13%), but higher neuropeptide Y (Npy) (18%) mRNA expression. Folic acid supplementation ameliorated the alterations induced by maternal folic acid supplementation in male pups and led to the lowest insulin resistance, but the effects were smaller in female pups and led to the highest insulin resistance. In conclusion, maternal folic acid supplementation at 2.5× the control level was associated with alterations in body weight and hypothalamic gene expression in rat offspring in a sex-specific manner, and some of these effects were attenuated by postweaning folic acid supplementation. PMID:26989972

  4. Real-Time In Vivo Imaging of Retinal Cell Apoptosis after Laser Exposure

    PubMed Central

    Schmitz-Valckenberg, Steffen; Guo, Li; Maass, Annelie; Cheung, William; Vugler, Anthony; Moss, Stephen E.; Munro, Peter M. G.; Fitzke, Frederick W.; Cordeiro, M. Francesca

    2008-01-01

    Purpose To investigate whether the detection of apoptosing retinal cells (DARC) could detect cells undergoing apoptosis in a laser model of retinal damage. Methods Laser lesions were placed, with the use of a frequency-doubled Nd:YAG laser, on the retina in 34 eyes of anesthetized Dark Agouti rats. Lesion size and laser-induced retinal elevation were analyzed using in vivo reflectance imaging. Development of retinal cell apoptosis was assessed using intravitreal fluorescence-labeled annexin 5 in vivo with DARC technology from baseline until 90 minutes after laser application. Histologic analysis of retinal flat mounts and cross-sections was performed. Results The lateral and anteroposterior depth extension of the zone of laser damage was significantly larger for higher exposure settings. A strong diffuse signal, concentrated at the outer retina, was seen with DARC for low exposures (<300 ms and <300 mW). In comparison, higher exposures (>300 ms and >300 mW) resulted in detectable hyperfluorescent spots, mainly at the level of the inner retinal layers. Dose-dependent effects on spot density and positive correlation of spot density between lesion size (P < 0.0001) and retinal elevation (P < 0.0001) were demonstrated. Histology confirmed the presence of apoptosing retinal cells in the inner nuclear and the ganglion cell layers. Conclusions This is the first time that DARC has been used to determine apoptotic effects in the inner nuclear layer. The ability to monitor changes spatially and temporally in vivo promises to be a major advance in the real-time assessment of retinal diseases and treatment effects. PMID:18281610

  5. Metallothionein I+II expression as an early sign of chronic relapsing experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis in rats.

    PubMed

    Jakovac, Hrvoje; Tota, Marin; Grebic, Damir; Grubic-Kezele, Tanja; Barac-Latas, Vesna; Mrakovcic-Sutic, Ines; Milin, Cedomila; Radosevic-Stasic, Biserka

    2013-02-01

    Metallothioneins (MTs) are small, cysteine-rich proteins which have been implicated in various forms of stress providing cytoprotective action against oxidative injury, DNA damage and apoptosis. Owing to their high affinity for physiological metals, such as zinc and copper MTs are also critical components of regulatory proteins involved in cell growth and multiplication, as well as in the maintenance of immune homeostasis. To elucidate the role of MTs in the pathomechanisms of autoimmune CNS disorders we estimated the expression of MT I+II proteins and the content of free Zn ions in the brain, spinal cord and in the liver early in the course of chronic relapsing experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (CR-EAE) pathogenesis, i.e. before the onset of any clinical symptoms. Disease was induced in the genetically susceptible Dark Agouti (DA) rats by subcutaneous injection of bovine brain homogenate in CFA. Control animals were treated with CFA alone. The data, obtained by immuno-histochemistry and in situ fluorescent labeling of free zinc ions, have shown that in the presymptomatic phase of CR-EAE (on the seventh postimmunization day) MTs I+II were markedly upregulated in the cells that form blood-brain and blood-cerebrospinal fluid barriers, as well as in the cerebellar parenchyma and hippocampal dentate gyri. Furthermore, we found that the liver also becomes a site of extensive MTs I+II synthesis shortly after immunization. Simultaneously, tissue content of free zinc ions increased at the sites of MTs induction, reflecting their antioxidative activity. The data, described in this paper point to regulatory and neuroprotective role of MTs in the pathogenesis of CR-EAE. PMID:23895520

  6. Altered regulation of energy homeostasis in older rats in response to thyroid hormone administration

    PubMed Central

    Walrand, Stephane; Short, Kevin R.; Heemstra, Lydia A.; Novak, Colleen M.; Levine, James A.; Coenen-Schimke, Jill M.; Nair, K. Sreekumaran

    2014-01-01

    Hyperthyroidism causes increased energy intake and expenditure, although anorexia and higher weight loss have been reported in elderly individuals with hyperthyroidism. To determine the effect of age on energy homeostasis in response to experimental hyperthyroidism, we administered 200 μg tri-iodothyronine (T3) in 7- and 27-mo-old rats for 14 d. T3 increased energy expenditure (EE) in both the young and the old rats, although the old rats lost more weight (147 g) than the young rats (58 g) because of the discordant effect of T3 on food intake, with a 40% increase in the young rats, but a 40% decrease in the old ones. The increased food intake in the young rats corresponded with a T3-mediated increase in the appetite-regulating proteins agouti-related peptide, neuropeptide Y, and uncoupling protein 2 in the hypothalamus, but no increase occurred in the old rats. Evidence of mitochondrial biogenesis in response to T3 was similar in the soleus muscle and heart of the young and old animals, but less consistent in old plantaris muscle and liver. Despite the comparable increase in EE, T3's effect on mitochondrial function was modulated by age in a tissue-specific manner. We conclude that older rats lack compensatory mechanisms to increase caloric intake in response to a T3-induced increase in EE, demonstrating a detrimental effect of age on energy homeostasis.—Walrand, S., Short, K. R., Heemstra, L. A., Novak, C. M., Levine, J. A., Coenen-Schimke, J. M., Nair, K. S. Altered regulation of energy homeostasis in older rats in response to thyroid hormone administration. PMID:24344330

  7. Multiple rodent models and behavioral measures reveal unexpected responses to FTY720 and DMF in experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis.

    PubMed

    de Bruin, N M W J; Schmitz, K; Schiffmann, S; Tafferner, N; Schmidt, M; Jordan, H; Häußler, A; Tegeder, I; Geisslinger, G; Parnham, M J

    2016-03-01

    Experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) is a widely-used rodent model for multiple sclerosis (MS), but a single model can hardly capture all features of MS. We investigated whether behavioral parameters in addition to clinical motor function scores could be used to assess treatment efficacy during score-free intervals in the relapsing-remitting EAE model in SJL/J mice. We studied the effects of the clinical reference compounds FTY720 (fingolimod, 0.5mg/kg/day) and dimethyl fumarate (DMF, 20-30 mg/kg/day) on clinical scores in several rodent EAE models in order to generate efficacy profiles. SJL/J mice with relapsing-remitting EAE were studied using behavioral tests, including rotarod, gait analysis, locomotor activity and grip strength. SJL/J mice were also examined according to Crawley's sociability and preference for social novelty test. Prophylactic treatment with FTY720 prevented clinical scores in three of the four EAE rodent models: Dark Agouti (DA) and Lewis rats and C57BL/6J mice. Neither prophylactic nor late-therapeutic treatment with FTY720 reduced clinical scores or reversed deficits in the rotarod test in SJL/J mice, but we observed effects on motor functions and sociability in the absence of clinical scores. Prophylactic treatment with FTY720 improved the gait of SJL/J mice whereas late-therapeutic treatment improved manifestations of reduced social (re)cognition or preference for social novelty. DMF was tested in three EAE models and did not improve clinical scores at the dose used. These data indicate that improvements in behavioral deficits can occur in absence of clinical scores, which indicate subtle drug effects and may have translational value for human MS. PMID:26692368

  8. A study on the mechanisms by which minocycline protects against MDMA ('ecstasy')-induced neurotoxicity of 5-HT cortical neurons.

    PubMed

    Orio, Laura; Llopis, Noemi; Torres, Elisa; Izco, Maria; O'Shea, Esther; Colado, M Isabel

    2010-08-01

    3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA, 'ecstasy') is a selective 5-HT neurotoxin in rat brain which has been shown to produce acute neuroinflammation characterized by activation of microglia and release of interleukin-1beta (IL-1beta). We aimed to determine whether or not minocycline, a semi-synthetic tetracycline antibiotic capable of inhibiting microglial activation, could prevent the inflammatory response and reduce the toxicity induced by MDMA. Adult male Dark Agouti rats were given minocycline twice a day for 2 days (45 mg/kg on the first day and 90 mg/kg on the second day; 12-h apart, i.p.). MDMA (12.5 mg/kg; i.p.) was given after the third minocycline injection and animals were killed either 1 h later for the determination of NFkappaB binding activity, 3 h later for the determination of IL-1beta, 24 h later for the determination of microglial activation or 7 days later for the determination of [(3)H]-paroxetine binding as a measure of 5-HT neurotoxicity. MDMA increased NFkappaB activation, IL-1beta release and microglial activation both in the frontal cortex and in the hypothalamus and 7 days later produced a reduction in the density of 5-HT uptake sites in both these brain areas. Minocycline prevented the MDMA-induced increase in NFkappaB activation, IL-1beta release and microglial activation in the frontal cortex and prevented the 5-HT neurotoxicity 7 days later. However, in the hypothalamus, in spite of preventing MDMA-induced microglial activation, minocycline failed to prevent MDMA-induced NFkappaB activation, IL-1beta release and neurotoxicity. This suggests that the protective mechanism of minocycline against MDMA-induced neurotoxicity in frontal cortex involves inhibition of MDMA-induced NFkappaB activation possibly through a reduction in IL-1beta signalling. PMID:19777321

  9. AgRP Neuron-Specific Deletion of Glucocorticoid Receptor Leads to Increased Energy Expenditure and Decreased Body Weight in Female Mice on a High-Fat Diet.

    PubMed

    Shibata, Miyuki; Banno, Ryoichi; Sugiyama, Mariko; Tominaga, Takashi; Onoue, Takeshi; Tsunekawa, Taku; Azuma, Yoshinori; Hagiwara, Daisuke; Lu, Wenjun; Ito, Yoshihiro; Goto, Motomitsu; Suga, Hidetaka; Sugimura, Yoshihisa; Oiso, Yutaka; Arima, Hiroshi

    2016-04-01

    Agouti-related protein (AgRP) expressed in the arcuate nucleus is a potent orexigenic neuropeptide, which increases food intake and reduces energy expenditure resulting in increases in body weight (BW). Glucocorticoids, key hormones that regulate energy balance, have been shown in rodents to regulate the expression of AgRP. In this study, we generated AgRP-specific glucocorticoid receptor (GR)-deficient (knockout [KO]) mice. Female and male KO mice on a high-fat diet (HFD) showed decreases in BW at the age of 6 weeks compared with wild-type mice, and the differences remained significant until 16 weeks old. The degree of resistance to diet-induced obesity was more robust in female than in male mice. On a chow diet, the female KO mice showed slightly but significantly attenuated weight gain compared with wild-type mice after 11 weeks, whereas there were no significant differences in BW in males between genotypes. Visceral fat pad mass was significantly decreased in female KO mice on HFD, whereas there were no significant differences in lean body mass between genotypes. Although food intake was similar between genotypes, oxygen consumption was significantly increased in female KO mice on HFD. In addition, the uncoupling protein-1 expression in the brown adipose tissues was increased in KO mice. These data demonstrate that the absence of GR signaling in AgRP neurons resulted in increases in energy expenditure accompanied by decreases in adiposity in mice fed HFD, indicating that GR signaling in AgRP neurons suppresses energy expenditure under HFD conditions. PMID:26889940

  10. Hunger States Control the Directions of Synaptic Plasticity via Switching Cell Type-Specific Subunits of NMDA Receptors.

    PubMed

    Qi, Yong; Yang, Yunlei

    2015-09-23

    It remains largely unknown whether and how hunger states control activity-dependent synaptic plasticity, such as long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD). We here report that both LTP and LTD of excitatory synaptic strength within the appetite control circuits residing in hypothalamic arcuate nucleus (ARC) behave in a manner of hunger states dependence and cell type specificity. For instance, we find that tetanic stimulation induces LTP at orexigenic agouti-related protein (AgRP) neurons in ad libitum fed mice, whereas it induces LTD in food-deprived mice. In an opposite direction, the same induction protocol induces LTD at anorexigenic pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) neurons in fed mice but weak LTP in deprived mice. Mechanistically, we also find that food deprivation increases the expressions of NR2C/NR2D/NR3-containing NMDA receptors (NMDARs) at AgRP neurons that contribute to the inductions of LTD, whereas it decreases their expressions at POMC neurons. Collectively, our data reveal that hunger states control the directions of activity-dependent synaptic plasticity by switching NMDA receptor subpopulations in a cell type-specific manner, providing insights into NMDAR-mediated interactions between energy states and associative memory. Significance statement: Based on the experiments performed in this study, we demonstrate that activity-dependent synaptic plasticity is also under the control of energy states by regulating NMDAR subpopulations in a cell type-specific manner. We thus propose a reversible memory configuration constructed from energy states-dependent cell type-specific bidirectional conversions of LTP and LTD. Together with the distinct functional roles played by NMDAR signaling in the control of food intake and energy states, these findings reveal a new reciprocal interaction between energy states and associative memory, one that might serve as a target for therapeutic treatments of the energy-related memory disorders or vice versa

  11. A mitochondrial-targeted coenzyme q analog prevents weight gain and ameliorates hepatic dysfunction in high-fat-fed mice.

    PubMed

    Fink, Brian D; Herlein, Judith A; Guo, Deng Fu; Kulkarni, Chaitanya; Weidemann, Benjamin J; Yu, Liping; Grobe, Justin L; Rahmouni, Kamal; Kerns, Robert J; Sivitz, William I

    2014-12-01

    We hypothesized that the mitochondrial-targeted antioxidant, mitoquinone (mitoQ), known to have mitochondrial uncoupling properties, might prevent the development of obesity and mitigate liver dysfunction by increasing energy expenditure, as opposed to reducing energy intake. We administered mitoQ or vehicle (ethanol) to obesity-prone C57BL/6 mice fed high-fat (HF) or normal-fat (NF) diets. MitoQ (500 µM) or vehicle (ethanol) was added to the drinking water for 28 weeks. MitoQ significantly reduced total body mass and fat mass in the HF-fed mice but had no effect on these parameters in NF mice. Food intake was reduced by mitoQ in the HF-fed but not in the NF-fed mice. Average daily water intake was reduced by mitoQ in both the NF- and HF-fed mice. Hypothalamic expression of neuropeptide Y, agouti-related peptide, and the long form of the leptin receptor were reduced in the HF but not in the NF mice. Hepatic total fat and triglyceride content did not differ between the mitoQ-treated and control HF-fed mice. However, mitoQ markedly reduced hepatic lipid hydroperoxides and reduced circulating alanine aminotransferase, a marker of liver function. MitoQ did not alter whole-body oxygen consumption or liver mitochondrial oxygen utilization, membrane potential, ATP production, or production of reactive oxygen species. In summary, mitoQ added to drinking water mitigated the development of obesity. Contrary to our hypothesis, the mechanism involved decreased energy intake likely mediated at the hypothalamic level. MitoQ also ameliorated HF-induced liver dysfunction by virtue of its antioxidant properties without altering liver fat or mitochondrial bioenergetics. PMID:25301169

  12. Swiss bare mice: a suitable model for transcutaneous in vivo Raman spectroscopic studies of breast cancer.

    PubMed

    Bhattacharjee, T; Kumar, Piyush; Maru, G; Ingle, A; Krishna, C Murali

    2014-01-01

    Breast cancer is the most common cancer affecting females worldwide. As early detection results in better prognosis, screening tools for breast cancer are being explored. Raman spectroscopy, a rapid, objective, and noninvasive tool, has shown promising results in the diagnosis of several cancers including breast cancer. For development as a screening tool, a study of spectral signatures associated with breast cancer progression is imperative. However, such studies are not possible in human subjects. Hence, there is a need for a suitable animal model, which is conducive to transcutaneous in vivo Raman spectroscopic measurements of breast with minimal interference from skin and hair and has contribution from functional mammary epithelium of breast. In this study, rodent models like C57, Swiss albino, Swiss bare, agouti mice, and Sprague-Dawley rats were evaluated. Among these models, transcutaneous breast spectra of hairless Swiss bare mice have the best signal-to-noise ratio and were closest to reported ex vivo as well as intraoperative in vivo human breast spectra. Principal component-linear discriminant analysis of several anatomical sites confirms minimal skin interference and suggests contribution from functional mammary epithelium of breast. Moreover, transcutaneous spectra from normal breast and breast tumors of Swiss bare mice could be classified with 99% efficiency, which is better than the previous reports. Thus, Swiss bare mice model may be better suited for transcutaneous in vivo Raman spectroscopic studies of breast physiology and pathology, especially breast cancer. Prospectively, in addition to cancer progression, breast-to-bone metastasis can also be studied, since these anatomical sites can be uniquely classified. PMID:23708992

  13. Betulinic acid regulates generation of neuroinflammatory mediators responsible for tissue destruction in multiple sclerosis in vitro

    PubMed Central

    Blaževski, Jana; Petković, Filip; Momčilović, Miljana; Paschke, Reinhard; Kaluđerović, Goran N; Mostarica Stojković, Marija; Miljković, Djordje

    2013-01-01

    Aim: To investigate the influences of betulinic acid (BA), a triterpenoid isolated from birch bark, on neuroinflammatory mediators involved in the pathogenesis of multiple sclerosis and experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis in vitro. Methods: Encephalitogenic T cells were prepared from draining lymph nodes and spinal cords of Dark Agouti rats 8 to 10 d after immunization with myelin basic protein (MBP) and complete Freund's adjuvant. Macrophages were isolated from the peritoneal cavity of adult untreated rats. Astrocytes were isolated from neonatal rat brains. The cells were cultured and then treated with different agents. IFN-γ, IL-17, iNOS and CXCL12 mRNA levels in the cells were analyzed with RT-PCR. iNOS and CXCL12 protein levels were detected using immunoblot. NO and ROS generation was measured using Griess reaction and flow cytometry, respectively. Results: In encephalitogenic T cells stimulated with MBP (10 μg/mL), addition of BA inhibited IL-17 and IFN-γ production in a dose-dependent manner. The estimated IC50 values for IL-17 and IFN γ were 11.2 and 63.8 μmol/L, respectively. When the macrophages were stimulated with LPS (10 ng/mL), addition of BA (50 μmol/L) significantly increased ROS generation, and suppressed NO generation. The astrocytes were stimulated with ConASn containing numerous inflammatory mediators, which mimicked the inflammatory milieu within CNS; addition of BA (50 μmol/L) significantly increased ROS generation, and blocked ConASn-induced increases in iNOS and CXCL12 mRNA levels, but did not affect iNOS and CXCL12 protein levels. Importantly, in both the macrophages and astrocytes, addition of BA (50 μmol/L) inhibited lipid peroxidation. Conclusion: Besides inhibiting encephalitogenic T cell cytokines and reducing NO generation, BA induces tissue-damaging ROS generation within CNS. PMID:23377550

  14. A Novel Analytical Strategy to Identify Fusion Transcripts between Repetitive Elements and Protein Coding-Exons Using RNA-Seq

    PubMed Central

    Feng, Jian; Fargo, David C.; Shen, Li; Riadi, Gonzalo; Keeley, Elizabeth; Rosh, Zachary S.; Nestler, Eric J.; Woychik, Richard P.

    2016-01-01

    Repetitive elements (REs) comprise 40–60% of the mammalian genome and have been shown to epigenetically influence the expression of genes through the formation of fusion transcript (FTs). We previously showed that an intracisternal A particle forms an FT with the agouti gene in mice, causing obesity/type 2 diabetes. To determine the frequency of FTs genome-wide, we developed a TopHat-Fusion-based analytical pipeline to identify FTs with high specificity. We applied it to an RNA-seq dataset from the nucleus accumbens (NAc) of mice repeatedly exposed to cocaine. Cocaine was previously shown to increase the expression of certain REs in this brain region. Using this pipeline that can be applied to single- or paired-end reads, we identified 438 genes expressing 813 different FTs in the NAc. Although all types of studied repeats were present in FTs, simple sequence repeats were underrepresented. Most importantly, reverse-transcription and quantitative PCR validated the expression of selected FTs in an independent cohort of animals, which also revealed that some FTs are the prominent isoforms expressed in the NAc by some genes. In other RNA-seq datasets, developmental expression as well as tissue specificity of some FTs differed from their corresponding non-fusion counterparts. Finally, in silico analysis predicted changes in the structure of proteins encoded by some FTs, potentially resulting in gain or loss of function. Collectively, these results indicate the robustness of our pipeline in detecting these new isoforms of genes, which we believe provides a valuable tool to aid in better understanding the broad role of REs in mammalian cellular biology. PMID:27415830

  15. Adenosine triphosphate-induced photoreceptor death and retinal remodeling in rats

    PubMed Central

    Vessey, Kirstan A; Greferath, Ursula; Aplin, Felix P; Jobling, Andrew I; Phipps, Joanna A; Ho, Tracy; De Iongh, Robbert U; Fletcher, Erica L

    2014-01-01

    Many common causes of blindness involve the death of retinal photoreceptors, followed by progressive inner retinal cell remodeling. For an inducible model of retinal degeneration to be useful, it must recapitulate these changes. Intravitreal administration of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) has recently been found to induce acute photoreceptor death. The aim of this study was to characterize the chronic effects of ATP on retinal integrity. Five-week-old, dark agouti rats were administered 50 mM ATP into the vitreous of one eye and saline into the other. Vision was assessed using the electroretinogram and optokinetic response and retinal morphology investigated via histology. ATP caused significant loss of visual function within 1 day and loss of 50% of the photoreceptors within 1 week. At 3 months, 80% of photoreceptor nuclei were lost, and total photoreceptor loss occurred by 6 months. The degeneration and remodeling were similar to those found in heritable retinal dystrophies and age-related macular degeneration and included inner retinal neuronal loss, migration, and formation of new synapses; Müller cell gliosis, migration, and scarring; blood vessel loss; and retinal pigment epithelium migration. In addition, extreme degeneration and remodeling events, such as neuronal and glial migration outside the neural retina and proliferative changes in glial cells, were observed. These extreme changes were also observed in the 2-year-old P23H rhodopsin transgenic rat model of retinitis pigmentosa. This ATP-induced model of retinal degeneration may provide a valuable tool for developing pharmaceutical therapies or for testing electronic implants aimed at restoring vision. J. Comp. Neurol. 522:2928–2950, 2014. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:24639102

  16. RMI1 deficiency in mice protects from diet and genetic-induced obesity.

    PubMed

    Suwa, Akira; Yoshino, Masayasu; Yamazaki, Chihiro; Naitou, Masanori; Fujikawa, Rie; Matsumoto, Shun-Ichiro; Kurama, Takeshi; Shimokawa, Teruhiko; Aramori, Ichiro

    2010-02-01

    The aim of this study is to discover and characterize novel energy homeostasis-related molecules. We screened stock mouse embryonic stem cells established using the exchangeable gene trap method, and examined the effects of deficiency of the target gene on diet and genetic-induced obesity. The mutant strain 0283, which has an insertion at the recQ-mediated genome instability 1 (RMI1) locus, possesses a number of striking features that allow it to resist metabolic abnormalities. Reduced RMI1 expression, lower fasting-blood glucose and a reduced body weight (normal diet) were observed in the mutant mice. When fed a high-fat diet, the mutant mice were resistant to obesity, and also showed improved glucose intolerance and reduced abdominal fat tissue mass and food intake. In addition, the mutants were also resistant to obesity induced by the lethal yellow agouti (A(y)) gene. Endogenous RMI1 genes were found to be up-regulated in the liver and adipose tissue of KK-A(y) mice. RMI1 is a component of the Bloom's syndrome gene helicase complex that maintains genome integrity and activates cell-cycle checkpoint machinery. Interestingly, diet-induced expression of E2F8 mRNA, which is an important cell cycle-related molecule, was suppressed in the mutant mice. These results suggest that the regulation of energy balance by RMI1 is attributable to the regulation of food intake and E2F8 expression in adipose tissue. Taken together, these findings demonstrate that RMI1 is a novel molecule that regulates energy homeostasis. PMID:20050919

  17. Seasonal changes in body mass, serum leptin levels and hypothalamic neuropeptide gene expression in male Eothenomys olitor.

    PubMed

    Wan-long, Zhu; Zheng-kun, Wang

    2015-06-01

    The present study examined seasonal changes in body mass and energy metabolism in the Chaotung vole (Eothenomys olitor) and the physiological mechanisms underpinning these changes. Seasonal changes in the following parameters were measured in male E. olitor, body mass, food intake, thermogenesis, enzyme activity, masses of tissues and organs, hormone concentrations and expression of hypothalamic arcuate nucleus energy balance genes including neuropeptide Y (NPY), agouti-related protein (AgRP), pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC), and cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART). Body mass was constant over the year, but the masses of tissues and organs differed significantly between seasons. There were significant changes in body fat mass and serum leptin levels over the four seasons. E. olitor showed significant seasonal changes in food intake and thermogenesis, uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1) content, enzyme activity, and serum tri-iodothyronine (T3) and thyroxine (T4) levels. Moreover, mRNA expression in the hypothalamus showed significant seasonal changes. All of our results suggested that E. olitor had constant body mass over the year, which was inconsistent with the prediction of the 'set-point' hypothesis. However, body fat mass and serum leptin levels were significantly different among the four seasons, providing support for the 'set-point' hypothesis. The changes in leptin, NPY, AgRP, POMC, and CART mRNA levels may play a role in the regulation of energy intake in E. olitor. Furthermore, the role of leptin and hypothalamic neuropeptide gene in the regulation of energy metabolism and body mass may be different in animals that are acclimated to different seasons. PMID:25700741

  18. The expression of leptin, hypothalamic neuropeptides and UCP1 before, during and after fattening in the Daurian ground squirrel (Spermophilus dauricus).

    PubMed

    Xing, Xin; Yang, Ming; Wang, De-Hua

    2015-06-01

    The Daurian ground squirrel (Spermophilus dauricus) accumulates large amounts of body fat during pre-hibernation fattening. Leptin, an adipose-derived hormone, plays important roles in energy balance and thermogenesis. We predicted that body fat accumulation would lead to the elevation of leptin concentration while its effect on satiety would be suppressed in hypothalamus during fattening. In addition, the uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1) in brown adipose tissue (BAT) would increase and correlated positively with leptin concentration before hibernation. Here, we measured serum leptin concentration and leptin mRNA in white adipose tissue (WAT), hypothalamic neuropeptides involved in energy regulation and UCP1 in BAT before, during and after fattening in squirrels. The fat mass gradually increased during fattening but serum leptin increased mainly in the late phase of fattening, which was consistent with leptin mRNA expression in WAT. During fattening, the mRNA of hypothalamic leptin receptor was up-regulated and correlated positively with serum leptin. Orexigenic neuropeptide Y mRNA increased by 67%; however agouti-related peptide remained unchanged before hibernation. There was no significant change in anorexigenic neuropeptide mRNA. No change in suppressor of cytokine signaling-3 and protein tyrosine phosphatase-1B was detected. UCP1 mRNA expression and protein content in BAT increased significantly after fattening. These changes were independent of environmental conditions and serum leptin concentration. Our results suggest that the dissociation of leptin production and adiposity during fattening may facilitate fat accumulation. No evidence of suppressed leptin signal was found in fattening squirrels. The UCP1 recruitment in post-fattening squirrels could occur without winter-like acclimation and increased leptin. PMID:25711781

  19. The functional requirements of mammalian hair: a compromise between crypsis and thermoregulation?

    PubMed

    Wacker, Chris B; McAllan, Bronwyn M; Körtner, Gerhard; Geiser, Fritz

    2016-08-01

    Mammalian fur often shows agouti banding with a proximal dark band near the skin and a lighter distal band. We examined the function of both bands in relation to camouflage, thermal properties of pelts, and thermal energetics of dunnarts (Sminthopsis crassicaudata), which are known to use torpor and basking. Although the distal band of dunnart fur darkened with increasing latitude, which is important for camouflage, it did not affect the thermal properties and the length of the dark band and total hair length were not correlated. In contrast, the length of the proximal dark band of preserved pelts exposed to sunlight was positively correlated (r (2) = 0.59) with the temperature underneath the pelt (T pelt). All dunnarts offered radiant heat basked by exposing the dark band of the hair during both rest and torpor. Basking dunnarts with longer dark bands had lower resting metabolism (r (2) = 0.69), warmed faster from torpor (r (2) = 0.77), required less energy to do so (r (2) = 0.32), and reached a higher subcutaneous temperature (T sub) at the end of rewarming (r (2) = 0.75). We provide the first experimental evidence on the possible dual function of the color banding of mammalian fur. The distal colored band appears to be important for camouflage, whereas the length of the dark proximal hair band facilitates heat gain for energy conservation and allows animals to rewarm quickly and economically from torpor. PMID:27287044

  20. Redox regulation of apurinic/apyrimidinic endonuclease 1 activity in Long-Evans Cinnamon rats during spontaneous hepatitis.

    PubMed

    Karmahapatra, Soumendra Krishna; Saha, Tapas; Adhikari, Sanjay; Woodrick, Jordan; Roy, Rabindra

    2014-03-01

    The Long-Evans Cinnamon (LEC) rat is an animal model for Wilson's disease. This animal is genetically predisposed to copper accumulation in the liver, increased oxidative stress, accumulation of DNA damage, and the spontaneous development of hepatocellular carcinoma. Thus, this animal model is useful for studying the relationship of endogenous DNA damage to spontaneous carcinogenesis. In this study, we have investigated the apurinic/apyrimidinic endonuclease 1 (APE1)-mediated excision repair of endogenous DNA damage, apurinic/apyrimidinic (AP)-sites, which is highly mutagenic and implicated in human cancer. We found that the activity was reduced in the liver extracts from the acute hepatitis period of LEC rats as compared with extracts from the age-matched Long-Evans Agouti rats. The acute hepatitis period had also a heightened oxidative stress condition as assessed by an increase in oxidized glutathione level and loss of enzyme activity of glyceraldehyde 3-phosphate dehydrogenase, a key redox-sensitive protein in cells. Interestingly, the activity reduction was not due to changes in protein expression but apparently by reversible protein oxidation as the addition of reducing agents to extracts of the liver from acute hepatitis period reactivated APE1 activity and thus, confirmed the oxidation-mediated loss of APE1 activity under increased oxidative stress. These findings show for the first time in an animal model that the repair mechanism of AP-sites is impaired by increased oxidative stress in acute hepatitis via redox regulation which contributed to the increased accumulation of mutagenic AP-sites in liver DNA. PMID:24337968

  1. Molecular evolution of GPCRs: Melanocortin/melanocortin receptors.

    PubMed

    Dores, Robert M; Londraville, Richard L; Prokop, Jeremy; Davis, Perry; Dewey, Nathan; Lesinski, Natalie

    2014-06-01

    The melanocortin receptors (MCRs) are a family of G protein-coupled receptors that are activated by melanocortin ligands derived from the proprotein, proopiomelanocortin (POMC). During the radiation of the gnathostomes, the five receptors have become functionally segregated (i.e. melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R), pigmentation regulation; MC2R, glucocorticoid synthesis; MC3R and MC4R, energy homeostasis; and MC5R, exocrine gland physiology). A focus of this review is the role that ligand selectivity plays in the hypothalamus/pituitary/adrenal-interrenal (HPA-I) axis of teleosts and tetrapods as a result of the exclusive ligand selectivity of MC2R for the ligand ACTH. A second focal point of this review is the roles that the accessory proteins melanocortin 2 receptor accessory protein 1 (MRAP1) and MRAP2 are playing in, respectively, the HPA-I axis (MC2R) and the regulation of energy homeostasis by neurons in the hypothalamus (MC4R) of teleosts and tetrapods. In addition, observations are presented on trends in the ligand selectivity parameters of cartilaginous fish, teleost, and tetrapod MC1R, MC3R, MC4R, and MC5R paralogs, and the modeling of the HFRW motif of ACTH(1-24) when compared with α-MSH. The radiation of the MCRs during the evolution of the gnathostomes provides examples of how the physiology of endocrine and neuronal circuits can be shaped by ligand selectivity, the intersession of reverse agonists (agouti-related peptides (AGRPs)), and interactions with accessory proteins (MRAPs). PMID:24868105

  2. Risperidone-induced weight gain and reduced locomotor activity in juvenile female rats: The role of histaminergic and NPY pathways.

    PubMed

    Lian, Jiamei; De Santis, Michael; He, Meng; Deng, Chao

    2015-01-01

    Second generation antipsychotic drugs (SGAs) such as risperidone are increasingly prescribed (mostly for off-label use) to children and adolescents for treating various mental disorders. SGAs cause serious weight gain/obesity and other metabolic side-effects. This study aimed to establish an animal model of risperidone-induced weight gain in female juvenile rats, and to investigate the effects of risperidone on the expression of hypothalamic histaminergic H1 receptors (H1R) and neuropeptides, and their association with weight gain. Female Sprague Dawley rats were treated orally with risperidone (0.3mg/kg, 3 times/day) or vehicle (control) starting from postnatal day (PD) 23 (±1 day) for 3 weeks (a period corresponding to the childhood-adolescent period in humans). In the female juvenile rats, risperidone treatment increased food intake and body weight gain, which started to appear after 12 days' treatment. Risperidone also significantly decreased the locomotor activity of the female rats. Consistently, risperidone significantly elevated mRNA expression of hypothalamic H1R, neuropeptide Y (NPY), and agouti-related peptide (AgRP) compared to controls, and H1R and NPY levels were correlated with risperidone enhanced weight gain and food intake in the female juvenile rats. However, risperidone did not affect hypothalamic proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART) mRNA expression. Therefore, these results suggested that risperidone elevated appetite and body weight gain in juveniles via regulation of the hypothalamic H1R, NPY and AgRP pathways, as well as by reducing activity. PMID:25782398

  3. [CHANGES IN LIFESTYLE FACTORS AFFECT THE LEVELS OF NEUROPEPTIDES, INVOLVED IN THE CONTROL OF EATING BEHAVIOR, INSULIN RESISTANCE AND LEVEL OF CHRONIC SYSTEMIC INFLAMMATION IN YOUNG OVERWEIGHT PERSONS].

    PubMed

    Shevchenko, Yu; Mamontova, T; Baranova, A; Vesnina, L; Kaidashev, I

    2015-11-01

    The continuous rise of overweight and obesity is a major concern for present and future healthcare management. The aim of our study was to evaluate the influence of lifestyle changes on central regulatory mechanisms of maintaining energy homeostasis, insulin resistance and chronic systemic inflammation in 18-25 year old overweight patients. The anthropometric measurements were done for each patient, including body weight, height, waist circumference (WC), hip circumference (HC), waist to hip ratio, and body mass index (BMI). Patients were divided into two groups according to their BMI. 20 males and 21 females with BMI > 25 kg/m2 were included in the first, study, group. The second, control, group consisted of 16 males and 11 females with BMI - 18.5 - 24.9 kg/m 2. Lipid profile, fasting glucose and insulin levels, HOMA-IR, TNF-α, ceruloplasmin, neuropeptides Agouti-related protein - AgRP and kokain- and amphetamine-mediated transcript - CART were examined at the beginning of the study (Day 1) and after 10 week treatment period (Day 70). During the 10 week treatment period, people in the study group underwent physical exercise programs of 40-60 minute duration three times per week, and brisk walking during the remaining days. The mean calorie expenditure during the exercise was 500 kcal/day. Each patient in the study group was given balanced, healthy diet with 20% calorie restriction from baseline diet. Our study reveled that negative energy balance caused a statistically significant decrease in AgRP, reduction of visceral fat stores, increase of HDL, reduction of TNF-α and dissolution of insulin resistance signs. Significant but not statistically significant reduction of CART level was observed after increased physical activity program and calorie restriction diet, which might play an important role in the mechanism of decreasing weight. However, further investigations are required in order to determine its place in body weight regulation. PMID:26656551

  4. Sex differences in the physiology of eating.

    PubMed

    Asarian, Lori; Geary, Nori

    2013-12-01

    Hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis function fundamentally affects the physiology of eating. We review sex differences in the physiological and pathophysiological controls of amounts eaten in rats, mice, monkeys, and humans. These controls result from interactions among genetic effects, organizational effects of reproductive hormones (i.e., permanent early developmental effects), and activational effects of these hormones (i.e., effects dependent on hormone levels). Male-female sex differences in the physiology of eating involve both organizational and activational effects of androgens and estrogens. An activational effect of estrogens decreases eating 1) during the periovulatory period of the ovarian cycle in rats, mice, monkeys, and women and 2) tonically between puberty and reproductive senescence or ovariectomy in rats and monkeys, sometimes in mice, and possibly in women. Estrogens acting on estrogen receptor-α (ERα) in the caudal medial nucleus of the solitary tract appear to mediate these effects in rats. Androgens, prolactin, and other reproductive hormones also affect eating in rats. Sex differences in eating are mediated by alterations in orosensory capacity and hedonics, gastric mechanoreception, ghrelin, CCK, glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1), glucagon, insulin, amylin, apolipoprotein A-IV, fatty-acid oxidation, and leptin. The control of eating by central neurochemical signaling via serotonin, MSH, neuropeptide Y, Agouti-related peptide (AgRP), melanin-concentrating hormone, and dopamine is modulated by HPG function. Finally, sex differences in the physiology of eating may contribute to human obesity, anorexia nervosa, and binge eating. The variety and physiological importance of what has been learned so far warrant intensifying basic, translational, and clinical research on sex differences in eating. PMID:23904103

  5. Regulation of the human melanocortin 1 receptor expression in epidermal melanocytes by paracrine and endocrine factors and by ultraviolet radiation.

    PubMed

    Scott, M Cathy; Suzuki, Itaru; Abdel-Malek, Zalfa A

    2002-12-01

    The aim of this study is to investigate the regulation of the human melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R) expression in cultured normal human melanocytes (NHM) by specific paracrine and endocrine factors, and by ultraviolet radiation (UVR). Treatment of NHM with alpha-melanotropin [alpha-melanocyte stimulating hormone (alpha-MSH)] increased MC1R mRNA level; the response was often more pronounced in NHM with a low (NHM-c) than in NHM with a high melanin content (NHM-b). Endothelin-1 increased MC1R mRNA level in NHM regardless of their melanin content. Basic fibroblast growth factor consistently up regulated MC1R mRNA level in NHM-b but not in NHM-c. Activation of protein kinase C by 12-0-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate slightly increased, while stimulation of adenylate cyclase by forskolin markedly up-regulated the MC1R mRNA level. beta-Estradiol increased, and combined treatment with beta-estradiol and alpha-MSH further elevated, MC1R mRNA level in NHM-c and NHM-b. Testosterone reduced, while progesterone had no effect on, MC1R mRNA level. Agouti signaling protein reduced, and UVR down regulated dose-dependently MC1R mRNA level in NHM-b and NHM-c. This effect was reversed 24 h after irradiation with the lower doses of 7 or 14 mJ/cm2, but not after exposure to a higher, more cytotoxic dose of UVR. We conclude that the MC1R is regulated by paracrine factors, including its own ligands, by specific endocrine sex hormones, and by UVR. Differences in the responses of NHM to some of these factors suggest differential regulation of MC1R gene expression, which may contribute to the variation in constitutive and UV-induced cutaneous pigmentation in humans. PMID:12453185

  6. Modulation of orexigenic and anorexigenic peptides gene expression in the rat DVC and hypothalamus by acute immobilization stress

    PubMed Central

    Chigr, Fatiha; Rachidi, Fatima; Tardivel, Catherine; Najimi, Mohamed; Moyse, Emmanuel

    2014-01-01

    We studied the long term effects of a single exposure to immobilization stress (IS) (1 h) on the expression of anorexigenic (Pro-opiomelanocortin: POMC and cocaine amphetamine related transcript: CART) and orexigenic (neuropeptide Y:NPY, Agouti related peptide: AgRP) factors in hypothalamus and dorso vagal complex (DVC). We showed, by using RT-PCR that in the hypothalamus, that the mRNAs of POMC and CART were up-regulated at the end of IS and up to 24 h. This up regulation persists until 48–72 h after IS for CART only. In the DVC, their expressions peak significantly at 24 h post stress and decline afterwards; CART mRNA is down regulated after 48 h post stress. NPY and AgRP mRNAs show a gradual increase just after the end of IS. The up regulation is significant only at 24 h after stress for AgRP but remains significantly higher for NPY compared to controls. In DVC, the mRNAs of the two factors show generally a similar post stress pattern. A significant increase jut after the end of IS of rats which persists up to 24 h after is firstly noticed. The levels tend then to reach the basal levels although, they were slightly but significantly higher up to 72 h after stress for mRNA NPY. The comparison between the expression profiles of anorexigenic and the two orexigenic peptides investigated shows the presence of a parallelism between that of POMC and AgRP and that of CART and NPY when each brain region (hypothalamus and DVC) is considered separately. It seems that any surge in the expression of each anorexigenic factor stimulates the expression of those of corresponding and appropriated orexigenic one. These last reactions from orexigenic peptides tend to attenuate the anorexigenic effects of CART and POMC and by consequent to abolish the anorexia state generated by stress. PMID:25100947

  7. A Mitochondrial-Targeted Coenzyme Q Analog Prevents Weight Gain and Ameliorates Hepatic Dysfunction in High-Fat–Fed Mice

    PubMed Central

    Fink, Brian D.; Herlein, Judith A.; Guo, Deng Fu; Kulkarni, Chaitanya; Weidemann, Benjamin J.; Yu, Liping; Grobe, Justin L.; Rahmouni, Kamal; Kerns, Robert J.

    2014-01-01

    We hypothesized that the mitochondrial-targeted antioxidant, mitoquinone (mitoQ), known to have mitochondrial uncoupling properties, might prevent the development of obesity and mitigate liver dysfunction by increasing energy expenditure, as opposed to reducing energy intake. We administered mitoQ or vehicle (ethanol) to obesity-prone C57BL/6 mice fed high-fat (HF) or normal-fat (NF) diets. MitoQ (500 µM) or vehicle (ethanol) was added to the drinking water for 28 weeks. MitoQ significantly reduced total body mass and fat mass in the HF-fed mice but had no effect on these parameters in NF mice. Food intake was reduced by mitoQ in the HF-fed but not in the NF-fed mice. Average daily water intake was reduced by mitoQ in both the NF- and HF-fed mice. Hypothalamic expression of neuropeptide Y, agouti-related peptide, and the long form of the leptin receptor were reduced in the HF but not in the NF mice. Hepatic total fat and triglyceride content did not differ between the mitoQ-treated and control HF-fed mice. However, mitoQ markedly reduced hepatic lipid hydroperoxides and reduced circulating alanine aminotransferase, a marker of liver function. MitoQ did not alter whole-body oxygen consumption or liver mitochondrial oxygen utilization, membrane potential, ATP production, or production of reactive oxygen species. In summary, mitoQ added to drinking water mitigated the development of obesity. Contrary to our hypothesis, the mechanism involved decreased energy intake likely mediated at the hypothalamic level. MitoQ also ameliorated HF-induced liver dysfunction by virtue of its antioxidant properties without altering liver fat or mitochondrial bioenergetics. PMID:25301169

  8. The local effect of octreotide on mechanical pain sensitivity is more sensitive in DA rats than DA.1U rats.

    PubMed

    Yao, Fan-Rong; Wang, Hui-Sheng; Guo, Yuan; Zhao, Yan

    2016-02-01

    A recent study by the authors indicated that major histocompatibility complex (MHC) genes are associated with the differences in basal pain sensitivity and in formalin model between Dark-Agouti (DA) and novel congenic DA.1U rats, which have the same genetic background as DA rats except for the u alleles of MHC. The objective of the present study is to investigate whether there is a difference in the pristane-induced arthritis (PIA) model and local analgesic effect of octreotide (OCT) between DA and DA.1U rats. The hindpaw mechanical withdrawal threshold (MWT) and heat withdrawal latency (HWL) were observed. The C unit firings of the tibial nerve evoked by non-noxious and noxious toe movements were recorded by electrophysiological methods in normal and PIA models in DA and DA.1U rats before and after local OCT administration. The expression of somatostatin receptor 2A (SSTR2A) was observed by immunohistochemistry. The results demonstrate that DA rats have a higher mechanical sensitivity than DA.1U rats after PIA. Local OCT administration significantly elevated MWT in DA rats under normal and PIA sate, but not in DA.1U rats. The electrophysiological experiments showed OCT significantly attenuated the firings of C units evoked by non-noxious and noxious stimulation in DA rats more than those in DA.1U rats both in normal and PIA states. In addition, the expression of SSTR2A in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord was significantly higher in DA than in DA.1U rats. All of the findings suggest a higher local analgesic effect of OCT in DA rats than DA.1U rats, which might be associated with the MHC genes. PMID:26606866

  9. Central orchestration of peripheral nutrient partitioning and substrate utilization: implications for the metabolic syndrome.

    PubMed

    Denis, R G P; Joly-Amado, A; Cansell, C; Castel, J; Martinez, S; Delbes, A S; Luquet, S

    2014-06-01

    Energy homoeostasis is maintained through a complex interplay of nutrient intake and energy expenditure. The central nervous system is an essential component of this regulation, as it integrates circulating signals of hunger and satiety to develop adaptive responses at the behavioural and metabolic levels, while the hypothalamus is regarded as a particularly crucial structure in the brain in terms of energy homoeostasis. The arcuate nucleus (ARC) of the hypothalamus contains at least two intermingled neuronal populations: the neurons that produce neuropeptide Y (NPY); and the Agouti-related protein (AgRP) produced by AgRP/NPY neurons situated below the third ventricle in close proximity to proopiomelanocortin (POMC)-producing neurons. POMC neurons exert their catabolic and anorectic actions by releasing α-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (α-MSH), while AgRP neurons oppose this action by exerting tonic GABAergic inhibition of POMC neurons and releasing the melanocortin receptor inverse agonist AgRP. The release of neurotransmitters and neuropeptides by second-order AgRP neurons appears to take place on a multiple time scale, thereby allowing neuromodulation of preganglionic neuronal activity and subsequent control of nutrient partitioning - in other words, the coordinated regulation of conversion, storage and utilization of carbohydrates vs. lipids. This suggests that the function of AgRP neurons extends beyond the strict regulation of feeding to the regulation of efferent organ activity, such that AgRP neurons may now be viewed as an important bridge between central detection of nutrient availability and peripheral nutrient partitioning, thus providing a mechanistic link between obesity and obesity-related disorders. PMID:24332017

  10. Prenatal Testosterone Treatment Leads to Changes in the Morphology of KNDy Neurons, Their Inputs, and Projections to GnRH Cells in Female Sheep.

    PubMed

    Cernea, Maria; Padmanabhan, Vasantha; Goodman, Robert L; Coolen, Lique M; Lehman, Michael N

    2015-09-01

    Prenatal testosterone (T)-treated ewes display a constellation of reproductive defects that closely mirror those seen in PCOS women, including altered hormonal feedback control of GnRH. Kisspeptin/neurokinin B/dynorphin (KNDy) neurons of the arcuate nucleus (ARC) play a key role in steroid feedback control of GnRH secretion, and prenatal T treatment in sheep causes an imbalance of KNDy peptide expression within the ARC. In the present study, we tested the hypothesis that prenatal T exposure, in addition to altering KNDy peptides, leads to changes in the morphology and synaptic inputs of this population, kisspeptin cells of the preoptic area (POA), and GnRH cells. Prenatal T treatment significantly increased the size of KNDy cell somas, whereas POA kisspeptin, GnRH, agouti-related peptide, and proopiomelanocortin neurons were each unchanged in size. Prenatal T treatment also significantly reduced the total number of synaptic inputs onto KNDy neurons and POA kisspeptin neurons; for KNDy neurons, the decrease was partly due to a decrease in KNDy-KNDy synapses, whereas KNDy inputs to POA kisspeptin cells were unaltered. Finally, prenatal T reduced the total number of inputs to GnRH cells in both the POA and medial basal hypothalamus, and this change was in part due to a decreased number of inputs from KNDy neurons. The hypertrophy of KNDy cells in prenatal T sheep resembles that seen in ARC kisspeptin cells of postmenopausal women, and together with changes in their synaptic inputs and projections to GnRH neurons, may contribute to defects in steroidal control of GnRH observed in this animal model. PMID:26061725

  11. Serotonin controlling feeding and satiety.

    PubMed

    Voigt, Jörg-Peter; Fink, Heidrun

    2015-01-15

    Serotonin has been implicated in the control of satiety for almost four decades. Historically, the insight that the appetite suppressant effect of fenfluramine is linked to serotonin has stimulated interest in and research into the role of this neurotransmitter in satiety. Various rodent models, including transgenic models, have been developed to identify the involved 5-HT receptor subtypes. This approach also required the availability of receptor ligands of different selectivity, and behavioural techniques had to be developed simultaneously which allow differentiating between unspecific pharmacological effects of these ligands and 'true' satiation and satiety. Currently, 5-HT1B, 5-HT2C and 5-HT6 receptors have been identified to mediate serotonergic satiety in different ways. The recently approved anti-obesity drug lorcaserin is a 5-HT2C receptor agonist. In brain, both hypothalamic (arcuate nucleus, paraventricular nucleus) and extrahypothalamic sites (parabrachial nucleus, nucleus of the solitary tract) have been identified to mediate the serotonergic control of satiety. Serotonin interacts within the hypothalamus with endogenous orexigenic (Neuropeptide Y/Agouti related protein) and anorectic (α-melanocyte stimulating hormone) peptides. In the nucleus of the solitary tract serotonin integrates peripheral satiety signals. Here, the 5-HT3, but possibly also the 5-HT2C receptor play a role. It has been found that 5-HT acts in concert with such peripheral signals as cholecystokinin and leptin. Despite the recent advances of our knowledge, many of the complex interactions between 5-HT and other satiety factors are not fully understood yet. Further progress in research will also advance the development of new serotonergic anti-obesity drugs. PMID:25217810

  12. Modulation of AgRP-neuronal function by SOCS3 as an initiating event in diet-induced hypothalamic leptin resistance

    PubMed Central

    Olofsson, Louise E.; Unger, Elizabeth K.; Cheung, Clement C.; Xu, Allison W.

    2013-01-01

    Chronic consumption of a fat-rich diet leads to attenuation of leptin signaling in hypothalamic neurons, a hallmark feature of cellular leptin resistance. To date, little is known about the temporal and spatial dysregulation of neuronal function under conditions of nutrient excess. We show that agouti-related protein (AgRP)-expressing neurons precede proopiomelanocortin neurons in developing diet-induced cellular leptin resistance. High-fat diet-induced up-regulation of suppressor of cytokine signaling-3 (SOCS3) occurs in AgRP neurons before proopiomelanocortin and other hypothalamic neurons. SOCS3 expression in AgRP neurons increases after 2 d of high-fat feeding, but reduces after switching to a low-fat diet for 1 d. Consistently, transgenic overexpression of SOCS3 in AgRP neurons produces metabolic phenotypes resembling those observed after short-term high-fat feeding. We further show that AgRP neurons are the predominant cell type situated outside the blood-brain barrier in the mediobasal hypothalamus. AgRP neurons are more responsive to low levels of circulating leptin, but they are also more prone to development of leptin resistance in response to a small increase in blood leptin concentrations. Collectively, these results suggest that AgRP neurons are able to sense slight changes in plasma metabolic signals, allowing them to serve as first-line responders to fluctuation of energy intake. Furthermore, modulation of SOCS3 expression in AgRP neurons may play a dynamic and physiological role in metabolic fine tuning in response to short-term changes of nutritional status. PMID:23386726

  13. Growth hormone modulates hypothalamic inflammation in long-lived pituitary dwarf mice.

    PubMed

    Sadagurski, Marianna; Landeryou, Taylor; Cady, Gillian; Kopchick, John J; List, Edward O; Berryman, Darlene E; Bartke, Andrzej; Miller, Richard A

    2015-12-01

    Mice in which the genes for growth hormone (GH) or GH receptor (GHR(-/-) ) are disrupted from conception are dwarfs, possess low levels of IGF-1 and insulin, have low rates of cancer and diabetes, and are extremely long-lived. Median longevity is also increased in mice with deletion of hypothalamic GH-releasing hormone (GHRH), which leads to isolated GH deficiency. The remarkable extension of longevity in hypopituitary Ames dwarf mice can be reversed by a 6-week course of GH injections started at the age of 2 weeks. Here, we demonstrate that mutations that interfere with GH production or response, in the Snell dwarf, Ames dwarf, or GHR(-/-) mice lead to reduced formation of both orexigenic agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and anorexigenic proopiomelanocortin (POMC) projections to the main hypothalamic projection areas: the arcuate nucleus (ARH), paraventricular nucleus (PVH), and dorsomedial nucleus (DMH). These mutations also reduce hypothalamic inflammation in 18-month-old mice. GH injections, between 2 and 8 weeks of age, reversed both effects in Ames dwarf mice. Disruption of GHR specifically in liver (LiGHRKO), a mutation that reduces circulating IGF-1 but does not lead to lifespan extension, had no effect on hypothalamic projections or inflammation, suggesting an effect of GH, rather than peripheral IGF-1, on hypothalamic development. Hypothalamic leptin signaling, as monitored by induction of pStat3, is not impaired by GHR deficiency. Together, these results suggest that early-life disruption of GH signaling produces long-term hypothalamic changes that may contribute to the longevity of GH-deficient and GH-resistant mice. PMID:26268661

  14. Development of a novel pink-eyed dilution mouse model showing progressive darkening of the eyes and coat hair with aging.

    PubMed

    Ishikawa, Akira; Sugiyama, Makoto; Hondo, Eiichi; Kinoshita, Keiji; Yamagishi, Yuki

    2015-01-01

    Oca2(p-cas) (oculocutaneous albinism II; pink-eyed dilution castaneus) is a coat color mutant gene on mouse chromosome 7 that arose spontaneously in wild Mus musculus castaneus mice. Mice homozygous for Oca2(p-cas) usually exhibit pink eyes and gray coat hair on the non-agouti genetic background, and this ordinary phenotype remains unchanged throughout life. During breeding of a mixed strain carrying this gene on the C57BL/6J background, we discovered a novel spontaneous mutation that causes darkening of the eyes and coat hair with aging. In this study, we developed a novel mouse model showing this unique phenotype. Gross observations revealed that the pink eyes and gray coat hair of the novel mutant young mice became progressively darker in color by approximately 3 months after birth. Light and transmission-electron microscopic observations revealed a marked increase in melanin pigmentation of coat hair shafts and choroid of the eye in the novel mice compared to that in the ordinary mice. Sequence analysis of Oca2(p-cas) revealed a 4.1-kb deletion involving exons 15 and 16 of its wild-type gene. However, there was no sequence difference between the two types of mutant mice. Mating experiments suggested that the novel mutant phenotype was not inherited in a simple fashion, due to incomplete penetrance. The novel spontaneous mutant mouse is the first example of progressive hair darkening animals and is an essential animal model for understanding of the regulation mechanisms of melanin biosynthesis with aging. PMID:25739360

  15. Evaluation of cross-linked chitosan microparticles for bone regeneration.

    PubMed

    Bhat, Archana; Dreifke, Michael B; Kandimalla, Yugandhar; Gomez, Carlos; Ebraheim, Nabil A; Jayasuriya, A Champa

    2010-10-01

    The objective of this preliminary study was to evaluate the applying of chitosan (CS)-based microparticles (MPs) in bone regeneration in vivo. The CS MPs were fabricated using our scale-up method, as previously described. Mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) were harvested from the femora and tibiae of Dark Agouti (DA) rats and seeded on CS MPs. An in vitro MSCs attachment experiment was conducted by trypsinizing the cells attached to the MPs at 5, 10, 20 and 30 h. Fluorescence images of MSCs attached to the MPs were taken at 24 and 48 h, using a LIVE/DEAD cell assay. The MSC/osteoblasts (OB) seeded on MPs were then cultured in vitro using osteogenic media and implanted into partial thickness bone defects in rat femurs. There were two groups of rats, including experimental animals and controls, for the in vivo studies. The experimental group were implanted with MSC-seeded MPs and observed at 4 and 8 weeks. The control group of rats did not receive any implant material except the stainless steel plate to support the defect. Four rats per group were used for the study. The femurs were extracted at 4 and 8 weeks post-implantation and bone formation at the defect site was analysed using radiography, microcomputed tomography (µCT) and histology. Among all groups, a significant increase in bone formation was observed in the experimental group at 8 weeks implantation. The results of this study suggested that CS MPs prove to be a successful biomaterial for bone regeneration. PMID:20872740

  16. Dietary emu oil supplementation suppresses 5-fluorouracil chemotherapy-induced inflammation, osteoclast formation, and bone loss.

    PubMed

    Raghu Nadhanan, Rethi; Abimosleh, Suzanne M; Su, Yu-Wen; Scherer, Michaela A; Howarth, Gordon S; Xian, Cory J

    2012-06-01

    Cancer chemotherapy can cause osteopenia or osteoporosis, and yet the underlying mechanisms remain unclear, and currently, no preventative treatments are available. This study investigated damaging effects of 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) on histological, cellular, and molecular changes in the tibial metaphysis and potential protective benefits of emu oil (EO), which is known to possess a potent anti-inflammatory property. Female dark agouti rats were gavaged orally with EO or water (1 ml·day(-1)·rat(-1)) for 1 wk before a single ip injection of 5-FU (150 mg/kg) or saline (Sal) was given. The treatment groups were H(2)O + Sal, H(2)O + 5-FU, EO + 5-FU, and EO + Sal. Oral gavage was given throughout the whole period up to 1 day before euthanasia (days 3, 4, and 5 post-5-FU). Histological analysis showed that H(2)O + 5-FU significantly reduced heights of primary spongiosa on days 3 and 5 and trabecular bone volume of secondary spongiosa on days 3 and 4. It reduced density of osteoblasts slightly and caused an increase in the density of osteoclasts on trabecular bone surface on day 4. EO supplementation prevented reduction of osteoblasts and induction of osteoclasts and bone loss caused by 5-FU. Gene expression studies confirmed an inhibitory effect of EO on osteoclasts since it suppressed 5-FU-induced expression of proinflammatory and osteoclastogenic cytokine TNFα, osteoclast marker receptor activator of nuclear factor-κB, and osteoclast-associated receptor. Therefore, this study demonstrated that EO can counter 5-FU chemotherapy-induced inflammation in bone, preserve osteoblasts, suppress osteoclast formation, and potentially be useful in preventing 5-FU chemotherapy-induced bone loss. PMID:22436700

  17. The major histocompatibility complex genes impact pain response in DA and DA.1U rats.

    PubMed

    Guo, Yuan; Yao, Fan-Rong; Cao, Dong-Yuan; Li, Li; Wang, Hui-Sheng; Xie, Wen; Zhao, Yan

    2015-08-01

    Our recent studies have shown that the difference in basal pain sensitivity to mechanical and thermal stimulation between Dark-Agouti (DA) rats and a novel congenic DA.1U rats is major histocompatibility complex (MHC) genes dependent. In the present study, we further used DA and DA.1U rats to investigate the role of MHC genes in formalin-induced pain model by behavioral, electrophysiological and immunohistochemical methods. Behavioral results showed biphasic nociceptive behaviors increased significantly following the intraplantar injection of formalin in the hindpaw of DA and DA.1U rats. The main nociceptive behaviors were lifting and licking, especially in DA rats (P<0.001 and P<0.01). The composite pain scores (CPS) in DA rats were significantly higher than those in DA.1U rats in both phases of the formalin test (P<0.01). Electrophysiological results also showed the biphasic increase in discharge rates of C and Aδ fibers of L5 dorsal root in the two strains, and the net change of the discharge rate of DA rats was significantly higher than that of DA.1U rats (P<0.05). The mechanical thresholds decreased after formalin injection in both strains (P<0.01), and the net change in the mechanical threshold in DA was greater than that in DA.1U rats (P<0.05). The expression of RT1-B, representation of MHC class II molecule, in laminae I-II of L4/5 spinal cord in DA rats was significantly higher than that in DA.1U rats in the respective experimental group (P<0.05). These results suggested that both DA and DA.1U rats exhibited nociceptive responses in formalin-induced pain model and DA rats were more sensitive to noxious chemical stimulus than DA.1U rats, indicating that MHC genes might contribute to the difference in pain sensitivity. PMID:25861730

  18. Neuroendocrine regulation of appetitive ingestive behavior

    PubMed Central

    Keen-Rhinehart, Erin; Ondek, Katelynn; Schneider, Jill E.

    2013-01-01

    Food availability in nature is often irregular, and famine is commonplace. Increased motivation to engage in ingestive behaviors increases the chance of survival, providing additional potential opportunities for reproduction. Because of the advantages conferred by entraining ingestive behavior to environmental conditions, neuroendocrine mechanisms regulating the motivation to acquire and ingest food have evolved to be responsive to exogenous (i.e., food stored for future consumption) and endogenous (i.e., body fat stores) fuel availability. Motivated behaviors like eating occur in two phases. The appetitive phase brings animals into contact with food (e.g., foraging, food hoarding), and the more reflexive consummatory phase results in ingestion (e.g., chewing, swallowing). Quantifiable appetitive behaviors are part of the natural ingestive behavioral repertoire of species such as hamsters and humans. This review summarizes current knowledge about neuroendocrine regulators of ingestive behavior, with an emphasis appetitive behavior. We will discuss hormonal regulators of appetitive ingestive behaviors, including the orexigenic hormone ghrelin, which potently stimulates foraging and food hoarding in Siberian hamsters. This section includes a discussion of the hormone leptin, its relation to endogenous fat stores, and its role in food deprivation-induced increases in appetitive ingestive behaviors. Next, we discuss how hormonal regulators interact with neurotransmitters involved in the regulation of ingestive behaviors, such as neuropeptide Y (NPY), agouti-related protein (AgRP) and α-melanocyte stimulating hormone (α-MSH), to regulate ingestive behavior. Finally, we discuss the potential impact that perinatal nutrient availability can have on the neuroendocrine regulation of ingestive behavior. Understanding the hormonal mechanisms that connect metabolic fuel availability to central appetite regulatory circuits should provide a better understanding of the

  19. Neural and hormonal control of food hoarding

    PubMed Central

    Keen-Rhinehart, E.; Dailey, M. J.; Teubner, B. J.

    2011-01-01

    Many animals hoard food, including humans, but despite its pervasiveness, little is known about the physiological mechanisms underlying this appetitive behavior. We summarize studies of food hoarding in humans and rodents with an emphasis on mechanistic laboratory studies of species where this behavior importantly impacts their energy balance (hamsters), but include laboratory rat studies although their wild counterparts do not hoard food. The photoperiod and cold can affect food hoarding, but food availability is the most significant environmental factor affecting food hoarding. Food-deprived/restricted hamsters and humans exhibit large increases in food hoarding compared with their fed counterparts, both doing so without overeating. Some of the peripheral and central peptides involved in food intake also affect food hoarding, although many have not been tested. Ad libitum-fed hamsters given systemic injections of ghrelin, the peripheral orexigenic hormone that increases with fasting, mimics food deprivation-induced increases in food hoarding. Neuropeptide Y or agouti-related protein, brain peptides stimulated by ghrelin, given centrally to ad libitum-fed hamsters, duplicates the early and prolonged postfood deprivation increases in food hoarding, whereas central melanocortin receptor agonism tends to inhibit food deprivation and ghrelin stimulation of hoarding. Central or peripheral leptin injection or peripheral cholecystokinin-33, known satiety peptides, inhibit food hoarding. Food hoarding markedly increases with pregnancy and lactation. Because fasted and/or obese humans hoard more food in general, and more high-density/high-fat foods specifically, than nonfasted and/or nonobese humans, understanding the mechanisms underlying food hoarding could provide another target for behavioral/pharmacological approaches to curb obesity. PMID:21653877

  20. Arcuate nucleus destruction does not block food deprivation-induced increases in food foraging and hoarding

    PubMed Central

    Dailey, Megan J.; Bartness, Timothy J.

    2010-01-01

    The mechanisms underlying the control of food intake are considerably better understood than those underlying the appetitive ingestive behaviors of foraging and hoarding of food, despite the prevalence of the latter across species including humans. Neuropeptide Y (NPY) and agouti-related protein (AgRP), two orexigenic neuropeptides known to stimulate food intake in a variety of species, applied centrally to Siberian hamsters increases foraging and especially hoarding with lesser increases in food intake. Both are expressed in the arcuate nucleus (Arc) and their synthesis increases with food deprivation, a naturally-occurring stimulus that markedly increases foraging and hoarding in Siberian hamsters. Therefore, we tested whether destruction of Arc neurons blocks these ingestive behaviors. This was accomplished either by microinjecting NPY conjugated to saporin (NPY-SAP) bilaterally into the Arc to kill NPY receptor-bearing neurons or via neonatal monosodium glutamate (MSG) treatment. For both methods, Arc cresyl violet staining (cell density) and NPY and Y1 receptor immunoreactivity (ir) were significantly decreased. Although baseline foraging and food hoarding were not affected, food deprivation-induced increased food hoarding was surprisingly exaggerated ∼100 % with both types of Arc destruction. We found a substantial amount of remaining NPY-ir fibers, likely emanating from the brainstem, and a significant upregulation of Y1 receptors in Arc NPY projections areas (hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus and perifornical area) after Arc denervation and their activation may have accounted for the exaggerated increases. The converging evidence from both Arc destruction methods suggests an intact Arc is not necessary for food deprivation-induced increases in food foraging and hoarding. PMID:20138163

  1. Hypothalamic expression of genes for appetite regulators and estrogen α, estrogen β and leptin receptors in obese dams and their fetuses.

    PubMed

    Breton, A B; Cockrum, R R; Austin, K J; Cammack, K M; Ford, S P; Hess, B W; Moss, G E; Nathanielsz, P W; Alexander, B M

    2011-12-01

    Under- and over-nutrition during gestation may influence fetal hypothalamic development resulting in individuals predisposed to adverse health effects. This study examined fetuses from obese and control ewes to determine whether dam obesity alters hypothalamic expression of fetal appetite regulatory genes. A second objective was to contrast the expression of appetite regulatory genes in ewes that become the most obese to those that remained in moderate body condition on the same energy-rich diet. Multiparous, western white-faced ewes were weighed and individually fed 100% (control) or 150% (obese) of National Research Council requirements from day 60 before mating until day 75 of gestation. At day 75 of gestation, fetuses were collected and weighed. Hypothalamic tissue from fetal lambs and dams was collected and frozen for mRNA extraction. Dam obesity (P ≥ 0.16), fetal sex (P ≥ 0.44) or their interaction (P ≥ 0.42) did not affect the relative expression of fetal hypothalamic regulators of appetite, including neuropeptide Y, agouti-related protein, pro-opiomelanocortin, cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript and receptors for leptin. Maternal obesity at day 75 of gestation in ewes did not affect developmental mechanisms responsible for the expression of fetal appetite regulatory genes and would not be expected to predispose offspring to adult-onset obesity through disrupted appetite regulation at this developmental time point. In the ewe, appetite regulatory genes did not differ (P > 0.20) with ewe adiposity; however, expression of estrogen receptor α, but not β (P = 0.37), in the medial basal hypothalamus was greater (P = 0.04) in obese than in control ewes. PMID:22440471

  2. Thyroid Transcription Factor‐1 Regulates Feeding Behavior via Melanocortin Pathway in the Hypothalamus

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Jae Geun; Park, Byong Seo; Yun, Chang Ho; Kim, Hyun Jun; Kang, Sang Soo; D’Elia, Angela Valentina; Damante, Giuseppe; Lee, Ki-Up; Park, Jeong Woo; Kim, Eun Sook; Namgoong, Il Seong; Kim, Young Il; Lee, Byung Ju

    2011-01-01

    OBJECTIVE α-Melanocyte–stimulating hormone (α-MSH) and agouti-related peptide (AgRP) control energy homeostasis by their opposing actions on melanocortin receptors (MC3/4R) in the hypothalamus. We previously reported that thyroid transcription factor-1 (TTF-1) controls feeding behavior in the hypothalamus. This study aims to identify the function of TTF-1 in the transcriptional regulation of AgRP and α-MSH synthesis for the control of feeding behavior. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS TTF-1 activity in AgRP and pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) transcription was examined using gel-shift and promoter assays and an in vivo model of TTF-1 synthesis inhibition by intracerebroventricular injection of an antisense (AS) oligodeoxynucleotide (ODN). Double immunohistochemistry was performed to colocalize TTF-1 and AgRP or α-MSH in the hypothalamic arcuate nucleus (ARC). To determine whether TTF-1 action on food intake is mediated through MC3/4R, we measured changes in food intake upon intracerebroventricular injection of MC3/4R antagonists (SHU9119 and AgRP) into rat brain preinjected with the AS ODN. RESULTS TTF-1 stimulated AgRP but inhibited POMC transcription by binding to the promoters of these genes. TTF-1 was widely distributed in the hypothalamus, but we identified some cells coexpressing TTF-1 and AgRP or α-MSH in the ARC. In addition, intracerebroventricular administration of leptin decreased TTF-1 expression in the hypothalamus, and AS ODN-induced inhibition of TTF-1 expression decreased food intake and AgRP expression but increased α-MSH expression. Anorexia induced by the AS ODN was attenuated by the administration of MC3/4R antagonists. CONCLUSIONS TTF-1 transcriptionally regulates synthesis of AgRP and α-MSH in the ARC and affects feeding behavior via the melanocortin pathway. PMID:21282365

  3. Effect of polaprezinc on impaired healing of chronic gastric ulcers in adjuvant-induced arthritic rats--role of insulin-like growth factors (IGF)-1.

    PubMed

    Kato, S; Tanaka, A; Ogawa, Y; Kanatsu, K; Seto, K; Yoneda, T; Takeuchi, K

    2001-01-01

    Polaprezinc, N-(3-aminopropionyl)-L-histidinatozinc, has been shown to stimulate the production of insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) in mesenchymal cells, the polypeptide playing a role in the gastric epithelial wound repair. The present study was performed to examine the effect of polaprezinc on the impaired healing of chronic gastric ulcers in adjuvant-induced arthritic rats, in relation to IGF-1. Arthritis was induced in male Dark Agouti (DA) rats by a single injection of Freund's complete adjuvant (FCA), and the gastric ulcers were induced by thermal cauterization (70 degrees C for 30 sec) 7 days after FCA injection. Omeprazole (30 mg/kg) was administered p.o. once daily, while recombinant human IGF-1 (rhIGF-1) (30 micrograms/kg, s.c.) or polaprezinc (3-10 mg/kg, p.o.) was administered twice daily, starting from 3 days after ulceration for 14 days. The healing of gastric ulcers was significantly delayed in arthritic rats as compared to normal rats on day 10 and 17 following ulceration. The expression of IGF-1 mRNA was markedly increased in the ulcerated mucosa, but this response was apparently attenuated in arthritic rats. Repeated administration of polaprezinc accelerated the healing of gastric ulcers in both normal and arthritic rats, in a dose-dependent manner, and this effect was more pronounced in arthritic rats. Likewise, treatment with omeprazole also significantly promoted the healing of gastric ulcers in both normal and arthritic rats. On the other hand, rhIGF-1 significantly promoted the gastric ulcer healing in arthritic rats without any effect on that in normal rats. These results suggest that the impaired healing of chronic gastric ulcers in arthritic rats is, at least partly, accounted for by less expression of IGF-1, and the polaprezinc improves the delayed healing of gastric ulcers in arthritic rats, probably through an increase in IGF-1 production. PMID:11208487

  4. Stimulation of the hypothalamic ventromedial nuclei by pituitary adenylate cyclase-activating polypeptide induces hypophagia and thermogenesis

    PubMed Central

    Resch, Jon M.; Boisvert, Joanne P.; Hourigan, Allison E.; Mueller, Christopher R.; Yi, Sun Shin

    2011-01-01

    Numerous studies have demonstrated that the hypothalamic ventromedial nuclei (VMN) regulate energy homeostasis by integrating and utilizing behavioral and metabolic mechanisms. The VMN heavily express pituitary adenylate cyclase-activating polypeptide (PACAP) type I receptors (PAC1R). Despite the receptor distribution, most PACAP experiments investigating affects on feeding have focused on intracerebroventricular administration or global knockout mice. To identify the specific contribution of PACAP signaling in the VMN, we injected PACAP directly into the VMN and measured feeding behavior and indices of energy expenditure. Following an acute injection of PACAP, nocturnal food intake was significantly reduced for 6 h after injections without evidence of malaise. In addition, PACAP-induced suppression of feeding also occurred following an overnight fast and could be blocked by a specific PAC1R antagonist. Metabolically, VMN-specific injections of PACAP significantly increased both core body temperature and spontaneous locomotor activity with a concurrent increase in brown adipose uncoupling protein 1 mRNA expression. To determine which signaling pathways were responsive to PACAP administration into the VMN, we measured mRNA expression of well-characterized hypothalamic neuropeptide regulators of feeding. One hour after PACAP administration, expression of pro-opiomelanocortin mRNA was significantly increased in the arcuate nuclei (ARC), with no changes in neuropeptide Y and agouti-related polypeptide mRNA levels. This suggests that PAC1R expressing VMN neurons projecting to pro-opiomelanocortin neurons contribute to hypophagia by involving melanocortin signaling. While the VMN also abundantly express PACAP protein, the present study demonstrates that PACAP input to the VMN can influence the control of energy homeostasis. PMID:21957159

  5. Leptin regulates energy intake but fails to facilitate hibernation in fattening Daurian ground squirrels (Spermophilus dauricus).

    PubMed

    Xing, Xin; Tang, Gang-Bin; Sun, Ming-Yue; Yu, Chao; Song, Shi-Yi; Liu, Xin-Yu; Yang, Ming; Wang, De-Hua

    2016-04-01

    Body fat storage before hibernation affects the timing of immergence in Daurian ground squirrels (Spermophilus dauricus). Leptin is an adipose signal and plays vital role in energy homeostasis mainly by action in brain. To test the hypothesis that leptin plays a role in facilitating the process of hibernation, squirrels were administrated with recombinant murine leptin (1μg/day) through intracerebroventricular (ICV) injection for 12 days during fattening. From day 7 to 12, animals were moved into a cold room (5±1°C) with constant darkness which functioned as hibernaculum. Energy intake, body mass and core body temperature (Tb) were continuously monitored throughout the course of experiment. Resting metabolic rate (RMR) was measured under both warm and cold conditions. At the end of leptin administration, we measured the serum concentration of hormones related to energy regulation, mRNA expression of hypothalamic neuropeptides and uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1) levels in brown adipose tissue (BAT). Our results showed that during leptin administration, the cumulative food intake and increase of body mass were suppressed while Tb and RMR were unaltered. The proportion of torpid squirrels was not different between two groups. At the end of leptin administration, the expressions of hypothalamic neuropeptide Y and agouti gene-related protein were suppressed. There were no differences in UCP1 mRNA expression or protein content in BAT between groups. Our data suggest that leptin can affect energy intake via hypothalamic neuropeptides, but is not involved in the initiation of hibernation in fattening Daurian ground squirrels. PMID:27033037

  6. Cloning, characterization and targeting of the mouse HEXA gene

    SciTech Connect

    Wakamatsu, N.; Trasler, J.M.; Gravel, R.A.

    1994-09-01

    The HEXA gene, encoding the {alpha} subunit of {beta}-hexosaminidase A, is essential for the metabolism of ganglioside G{sub M2}, and defects in this gene cause Tay-Sachs disease in humans. To elucidate the role of the gene in the nervous system of the mouse and to establish a mouse model of Tay-Sachs disease, we have cloned and characterized the HEXA gene and targeted a disruption of the gene in mouse ES cells. The mouse HEXA gene spans {approximately}26 kb and consists of 14 exons, similar to the human gene. A heterogeneous transcription initiation site was identified 21-42 bp 5{prime} of the initiator ATG, with two of the sites fitting the consensus CTCA (A = start) as seen for some weak initiator systems. Promoter analysis showed that the first 150 bp 5{prime} of the ATG contained 85% of promoter activity observed in constructs containing up to 1050 bp of 5{prime} sequence. The active region contained a sequence matching that of the adenovirus major late promoter upstream element factor. A survey of mouse tissues showed that the highest mRNA levels were in (max to min): testis (5.5 x brain cortex), adrenal, epididymis, heart, brain, lung, kidney, and liver (0.3 x brain cortex). A 12 kb BstI/SalI fragment containing nine exons was disrupted with the insertion of the bacterial neo{sup r} gene in exon 11 and was targeted into 129/Sv ES cells by homologous recombination. Nine of 153 G418 resistant clones were correctly targeted as confirmed by Southern blotting. The heterozygous ES cells were microinjected into mouse blastocysts and implanted into pseudo-pregnant mice. Nine male chimeric mice, showing that 40-95% chimerism for the 129/Sv agouti coat color marker, are being bred in an effort to generate germline transmission of the disrupted HEXA gene.

  7. Linoleic acid and stearic acid elicit opposite effects on AgRP expression and secretion via TLR4-dependent signaling pathways in immortalized hypothalamic N38 cells.

    PubMed

    Wang, Songbo; Xiang, Nana; Yang, Liusong; Zhu, Canjun; Zhu, Xiaotong; Wang, Lina; Gao, Ping; Xi, Qianyun; Zhang, Yongliang; Shu, Gang; Jiang, Qingyan

    2016-03-18

    The regulation of food intake is a promising way to combat obesity. It has been implicated that various fatty acids exert different effects on food intake and body weight. However, the underlying mechanism remains poorly understood. The aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of linoleic acid (LA) and stearic acid (SA) on agouti-related protein (AgRP) expression and secretion in immortalized mouse hypothalamic N38 cells and to explore the likely underlying mechanisms. Our results demonstrated that LA inhibited, while SA stimulated AgRP expression and secretion of N38 cells in a dose-dependent manner. In addition, LA suppressed the protein expression of toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4), phosphorylation levels of JNK and IKKα/β, suggesting the inhibition of TLR4-dependent inflammation pathway. However, the above mentioned inhibitory effects of LA were eliminated by TLR4 agonist lipopolysaccharide (LPS). In contrast, SA promoted TLR4 protein expression and activated TLR4-dependent inflammation pathway, with elevated ratio of p-JNK/JNK. While TLR4 siRNA reversed the stimulatory effects of SA on AgRP expression and TLR4-dependent inflammation. Moreover, we found that TLR4 was also involved in LA-enhanced and SA-impaired leptin/insulin signal pathways in N38 cells. In conclusion, our findings indicated that LA elicited inhibitory while SA exerted stimulatory effects on AgRP expression and secretion via TLR4-dependent inflammation and leptin/insulin pathways in N38 cells. These data provided a better understanding of the mechanism underlying fatty acids-regulated food intake and suggested the potential role of long-chain unsaturated fatty acids such as LA in reducing food intake and treating obesity. PMID:26879142

  8. A Pharmacologically Active Monoclonal Antibody against the Human Melanocortin-4 Receptor: Effectiveness After Peripheral and Central Administration

    PubMed Central

    Peter, Jean-Christophe; Lecourt, Anne-Catherine; Weckering, Marjorie; Zipfel, Géraldine; Niehoff, Michael L.; Banks, William A.; Hofbauer, Karl G.

    2010-01-01

    The hypothalamic melanocortin-4 receptor (MC4R) is a constituent of an important pathway regulating food intake and energy expenditure. We produced a monoclonal antibody (mAb) directed against the N-terminal domain of the MC4R and evaluated its potential as a possible therapeutic agent. This mAb (1E8a) showed specific binding to the MC4R in human embryonic kidney 293 cells expressing the human MC4R and blocked the activity of the MC4R under basal conditions and after stimulation with α-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (α-MSH). The inverse agonist action of Agouti-related protein was significantly enhanced in the presence of mAb 1E8a. After a single intracerebroventricular injection into the third ventricle, mAb 1E8a (1 μg) increased 24-h food intake in rats. After 7 days of continuous intracerebroventricular administration, mAb 1E8a increased food intake, body weight, and fat pad weight and induced hyperglycemia. Because the complete mAb was ineffective after intravenous injection, we produced single-chain variable fragments (scFvs) derived from mAb 1E8a. In pharmacokinetic studies it was demonstrated that these scFvs crossed the blood-brain barrier and reached the hypothalamus. Consequently, the scFv 1E8a increased significantly food intake and body weight in rats after intravenous administration (300 μg/kg). The pharmacological profile of mAb 1E8a and the fact that its scFv was active after peripheral administration suggest that derivatives of anti-MC4R mAbs may be useful in the treatment of patients with anorexia or cachexia. PMID:20118207

  9. Pioglitazone administration alters ovarian gene expression in aging obese lethal yellow mice

    PubMed Central

    Brannian, John D; Eyster, Kathleen M; Weber, Mitch; Diggins, Maureen

    2008-01-01

    Background Women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) are often treated with insulin-sensitizing agents, e.g. thiazolidinediones (TZD), which have been shown to reduce androgen levels and improved ovulatory function. Acting via peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR) gamma, TZD alter the expression of a large variety of genes. Lethal yellow (LY; C57BL/6J Ay/a) mice, possessing a mutation (Ay) in the agouti gene locus, exhibit progressive obesity, reproductive dysfunction, and altered metabolic regulation similar to women with PCOS. The current study was designed to test the hypothesis that prolonged treatment of aging LY mice with the TZD, pioglitazone, alters the ovarian expression of genes that may impact reproduction. Methods Female LY mice received daily oral doses of either 0.01 mg pioglitazone (n = 4) or an equal volume of vehicle (DMSO; n = 4) for 8 weeks. At the end of treatment, ovaries were removed and DNA microarrays were used to analyze differential gene expression. Results Twenty-seven genes showed at least a two-fold difference in ovarian expression with pioglitazone treatment. These included leptin, angiopoietin, angiopoietin-like 4, Foxa3, PGE1 receptor, resistin-like molecule-alpha (RELM), and actin-related protein 6 homolog (ARP6). For most altered genes, pioglitazone changed levels of expression to those seen in untreated C57BL/6J(a/a) non-mutant lean mice. Conclusion TZD administration may influence ovarian function via numerous diverse mechanisms that may or may not be directly related to insulin/IGF signaling. PMID:18348723

  10. Peroxisome proliferation-associated control of reactive oxygen species sets melanocortin tone and feeding in diet-induced obesity.

    PubMed

    Diano, Sabrina; Liu, Zhong-Wu; Jeong, Jin Kwon; Dietrich, Marcelo O; Ruan, Hai-Bin; Kim, Esther; Suyama, Shigetomo; Kelly, Kaitlin; Gyengesi, Erika; Arbiser, Jack L; Belsham, Denise D; Sarruf, David A; Schwartz, Michael W; Bennett, Anton M; Shanabrough, Marya; Mobbs, Charles V; Yang, Xiaoyong; Gao, Xiao-Bing; Horvath, Tamas L

    2011-09-01

    Previous studies have proposed roles for hypothalamic reactive oxygen species (ROS) in the modulation of circuit activity of the melanocortin system. Here we show that suppression of ROS diminishes pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) cell activation and promotes the activity of neuropeptide Y (NPY)- and agouti-related peptide (AgRP)-co-producing (NPY/AgRP) neurons and feeding, whereas ROS-activates POMC neurons and reduces feeding. The levels of ROS in POMC neurons were positively correlated with those of leptin in lean and ob/ob mice, a relationship that was diminished in diet-induced obese (DIO) mice. High-fat feeding resulted in proliferation of peroxisomes and elevated peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ (PPAR-γ) mRNA levels within the hypothalamus. The proliferation of peroxisomes in POMC neurons induced by the PPAR-γ agonist rosiglitazone decreased ROS levels and increased food intake in lean mice on high-fat diet. Conversely, the suppression of peroxisome proliferation by the PPAR antagonist GW9662 increased ROS concentrations and c-fos expression in POMC neurons. Also, it reversed high-fat feeding-triggered elevated NPY/AgRP and low POMC neuronal firing, and resulted in decreased feeding of DIO mice. Finally, central administration of ROS alone increased c-fos and phosphorylated signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (pStat3) expression in POMC neurons and reduced feeding of DIO mice. These observations unmask a previously unknown hypothalamic cellular process associated with peroxisomes and ROS in the central regulation of energy metabolism in states of leptin resistance. PMID:21873987

  11. Evidence that diet-induced hyperleptinemia, but not hypothalamic gliosis, causes ghrelin resistance in NPY/AgRP neurons of male mice.

    PubMed

    Briggs, Dana I; Lockie, Sarah H; Benzler, Jonas; Wu, Qunli; Stark, Romana; Reichenbach, Alex; Hoy, Andrew J; Lemus, Moyra B; Coleman, Harold A; Parkington, Helena C; Tups, Alex; Andrews, Zane B

    2014-07-01

    High-fat diet (HFD) feeding causes ghrelin resistance in arcuate neuropeptide Y (NPY)/Agouti-related peptide neurons. In the current study, we investigated the time course over which this occurs and the mechanisms responsible for ghrelin resistance. After 3 weeks of HFD feeding, neither peripheral nor central ghrelin increased food intake and or activated NPY neurons as demonstrated by a lack of Fos immunoreactivity or whole-cell patch-clamp electrophysiology. Pair-feeding studies that matched HFD calorie intake with chow calorie intake show that HFD exposure does not cause ghrelin resistance independent of body weight gain. We observed increased plasma leptin in mice fed a HFD for 3 weeks and show that leptin-deficient obese ob/ob mice are still ghrelin sensitive but become ghrelin resistant when central leptin is coadministered. Moreover, ob/ob mice fed a HFD for 3 weeks remain ghrelin sensitive, and the ability of ghrelin to induce action potential firing in NPY neurons was blocked by leptin. We also examined hypothalamic gliosis in mice fed a chow diet or HFD, as well as in ob/ob mice fed a chow diet or HFD and lean controls. HFD-fed mice exhibited increased glial fibrillary acidic protein-positive cells compared with chow-fed mice, suggesting that hypothalamic gliosis may underlie ghrelin resistance. However, we also observed an increase in hypothalamic gliosis in ob/ob mice fed a HFD compared with chow-fed ob/ob and lean control mice. Because ob/ob mice fed a HFD remain ghrelin sensitive, our results suggest that hypothalamic gliosis does not underlie ghrelin resistance. Further, pair-feeding a HFD to match the calorie intake of chow-fed controls did not increase body weight gain or cause central ghrelin resistance; thus, our evidence suggests that diet-induced hyperleptinemia, rather than diet-induced hypothalamic gliosis or HFD exposure, causes ghrelin resistance. PMID:24742194

  12. Leptin modulates the intrinsic excitability of AgRP/NPY neurons in the arcuate nucleus of the hypothalamus.

    PubMed

    Baver, Scott B; Hope, Kevin; Guyot, Shannon; Bjørbaek, Christian; Kaczorowski, Catherine; O'Connell, Kristen M S

    2014-04-16

    The hypothalamic arcuate nucleus (ARH) is a brain region critical for regulation of food intake and a primary area for the action of leptin in the CNS. In lean mice, the adipokine leptin inhibits neuropeptide Y (NPY) and agouti-related peptide (AgRP) neuronal activity, resulting in decreased food intake. Here we show that diet-induced obesity in mice is associated with persistent activation of NPY neurons and a failure of leptin to reduce the firing rate or hyperpolarize the resting membrane potential. However, the molecular mechanism whereby diet uncouples leptin's effect on neuronal excitability remains to be fully elucidated. In NPY neurons from lean mice, the Kv channel blocker 4-aminopyridine inhibited leptin-induced changes in input resistance and spike rate. Consistent with this, we found that ARH NPY neurons have a large, leptin-sensitive delayed rectifier K(+) current and that leptin sensitivity of this current is blunted in neurons from diet-induced obese mice. This current is primarily carried by Kv2-containing channels, as the Kv2 channel inhibitor stromatoxin-1 significantly increased the spontaneous firing rate in NPY neurons from lean mice. In HEK cells, leptin induced a significant hyperpolarizing shift in the voltage dependence of Kv2.1 but had no effect on the function of the closely related channel Kv2.2 when these channels were coexpressed with the long isoform of the leptin receptor LepRb. Our results suggest that dynamic modulation of somatic Kv2.1 channels regulates the intrinsic excitability of NPY neurons to modulate the spontaneous activity and the integration of synaptic input onto these neurons in the ARH. PMID:24741039

  13. Mutations in different pigmentation genes are associated with parallel melanism in island flycatchers.

    PubMed

    Uy, J Albert C; Cooper, Elizabeth A; Cutie, Stephen; Concannon, Moira R; Poelstra, Jelmer W; Moyle, Robert G; Filardi, Christopher E

    2016-07-13

    The independent evolution of similar traits across multiple taxa provides some of the most compelling evidence of natural selection. Little is known, however, about the genetic basis of these convergent or parallel traits: are they mediated by identical or different mutations in the same genes, or unique mutations in different genes? Using a combination of candidate gene and reduced representation genomic sequencing approaches, we explore the genetic basis of and the evolutionary processes that mediate similar plumage colour shared by isolated populations of the Monarcha castaneiventris flycatcher of the Solomon Islands. A genome-wide association study (GWAS) that explicitly controlled for population structure revealed that mutations in known pigmentation genes are the best predictors of parallel plumage colour. That is, entirely black or melanic birds from one small island share an amino acid substitution in the melanocortin-1 receptor (MC1R), whereas similarly melanic birds from another small island over 100 km away share an amino acid substitution in a predicted binding site of agouti signalling protein (ASIP). A third larger island, which separates the two melanic populations, is inhabited by birds with chestnut bellies that lack the melanic MC1R and ASIP allelic variants. Formal FST outlier tests corroborated the results of the GWAS and suggested that strong, directional selection drives the near fixation of the MC1R and ASIP variants across islands. Our results, therefore, suggest that selection acting on different mutations with large phenotypic effects can drive the evolution of parallel melanism, despite the relatively small population size on islands. PMID:27412275

  14. Meal pattern analysis in neural-specific proopiomelanocortin-deficient mice

    PubMed Central

    Richard, Christian D.; Tolle, Virginie; Low, Malcolm J.

    2011-01-01

    The central melanocortin system, consisting of melanocortin peptides, agouti gene related peptide and their receptors plays a critical role in the homeostatic control of energy balance. Loss of function mutations in the genes encoding proopiomelanocortin or melanocortin MC4 receptors cause profound obesity and hyperphagia. However, little is known about the functional relationship of melanocortin neurocircuits to the temporal organization of meal-taking behavior. We used an operant paradigm that combined lever pressing for food pellet deliveries with free water intake monitored by lickometers to quantify meal patterns in mutant mice that selectively lack proopiomelanocortin expression in hypothalamic neurons (nPOMCKO). Compared to wildtype siblings, nPOMCKO mice consumed 50% more food and water daily and exhibited a more stereotyped feeding pattern characterized by reduced inter-meal and inter-mouse variations. Average meals were larger in size but shorter in duration, with no change in meal number. Consequently, intermeal intervals were prolonged in nPOMCKO mice. Similar patterns were observed in pre-obese juvenile and frankly obese adult mice suggesting that neither age nor degree of obesity was responsible for the altered phenotypes. Spontaneous locomotion and wheel running were decreased in nPOMCKO mice, but circadian variations in locomotor and feeding activity were conserved. These data show that hyperphagia in male nPOMCKO mice is due to increased meal size but not meal number, and this pattern is established by age 5 wk. The combination of larger, more rapidly consumed meals and prolonged intermeal intervals suggests that proopiomelanocortin peptides are necessary for normal meal termination, but not the maintenance of satiety. PMID:21211523

  15. Hormonal, hypothalamic and striatal responses to reduced body weight gain are attenuated in anorectic rats bearing small tumors.

    PubMed

    Pourtau, Line; Leemburg, Susan; Roux, Pascale; Leste-Lasserre, Thierry; Costaglioli, Patricia; Garbay, Bertrand; Drutel, Guillaume; Konsman, Jan Pieter

    2011-05-01

    Lack of compensatory or even reduced food intake is frequently observed in weight-losing cancer patients and contributes to increased morbidity and mortality. Our previous work has shown increased transcription factor expression in the hypothalamus and ventral striatum of anorectic rats bearing small tumors. mRNA expression of molecules known to be involved in pathways regulating appetite in these structures was therefore assessed in this study. Given that pain, pro-inflammatory cytokines and metabolic hormones can modify food intake, spinal cord cellular activation patterns and plasma concentrations of cytokines and hormones were also studied. Morris hepatoma 7777 cells injected subcutaneously in Buffalo rats provoked a 10% lower body weight and 15% reduction in food intake compared to free-feeding tumor-free animals 4 weeks later when the tumor represented 1-2% of body mass. No differences in spinal cord activation patterns or plasma concentration of pro-inflammatory cytokines were observed between groups. However, the changes in plasma ghrelin and leptin concentrations found in food-restricted weight-matched rats in comparison to ad libitum-fed animals did not occur in anorectic tumor-bearing animals. Real-time PCR showed that tumor-bearing rats did not display the increase in hypothalamic agouti-related peptide mRNA observed in food-restricted weight-matched animals. In addition, microarray analysis and real-time PCR revealed increased ventral striatal prostaglandin D synthase expression in food-restricted animals compared to anorectic tumor-bearing rats. These findings indicate that blunted hypothalamic AgRP mRNA expression, probably as a consequence of relatively high leptin and low ghrelin concentrations, and reduced ventral striatal prostaglandin D synthesis play a role in maintaining cancer-associated anorexia. PMID:21334429

  16. Metabolic consequences of methotrexate therapy in tumour-bearing rats.

    PubMed

    Rofe, A M; Bourgeois, C S; Washington, J M; Philcox, J C; Coyle, P

    1994-02-01

    The metabolic response of the tumour-bearing host to methotrexate (MTX) therapy was investigated with particular attention to effects resulting from MTX-induced anorexia. Biochemical changes in female Dark Agouti rats bearing mammary adenocarcinomas and treated with MTX (0.5 mg/kg, 2 i.m. injections, 24 h apart) were compared with untreated (CON) tumour-bearing rats, and tumour-bearing rats pair-fed (PF) to the MTX group. MTX treatment halted progression of the tumour (tumour 6% of bodyweight) while the tumour burden doubled in the CON and PF groups. A number of biochemical and haematological changes were specific to MTX treatment and did not result from decreased food intake. MTX treatment was associated with significantly decreased plasma calcium, bilirubin, alkaline phosphatase, aspartate aminotransferase and the total white cell count. Decreases in plasma albumin and total protein concentrations were observed in both MTX and PF rats. Other parameters commonly used to assess renal and liver function were not significantly affected by MTX. MTX reversed the hypoglycaemia, hyperketonaemia and hypertriglyceridaemia induced by tumour-bearing. In contrast, PF rats had an even more pronounced hypoglycaemia and hyperketonaemia than the CON rats. Measurement of glucose uptake in vivo with 2-deoxy[U-14C]-glucose showed that MTX treatment halved the glucose requirement of the tumour (8.2% of bodyweight compared to 12.2% in the control). It is concluded that the potentially adverse effects of MTX treatment on host metabolism are outweighed by the beneficial effects of a reduced metabolic demand resulting from inhibition of tumour progression. PMID:8157287

  17. Acute treatment with valproic acid and l-thyroxine ameliorates clinical signs of experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis and prevents brain pathology in DA rats.

    PubMed

    Castelo-Branco, Gonçalo; Stridh, Pernilla; Guerreiro-Cacais, André Ortlieb; Adzemovic, Milena Z; Falcão, Ana Mendanha; Marta, Monica; Berglund, Rasmus; Gillett, Alan; Hamza, Kedir Hussen; Lassmann, Hans; Hermanson, Ola; Jagodic, Maja

    2014-11-01

    Multiple sclerosis (MS) is the most common chronic inflammatory demyelinating disease of the central nervous system (CNS) in young adults. Chronic treatments with histone deacetylase inhibitors (HDACis) have been reported to ameliorate experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), a rodent model of MS, by targeting immune responses. We have recently shown that the HDAC inhibition/knockdown in the presence of thyroid hormone (T3) can also promote oligodendrocyte (OL) differentiation and expression of myelin genes in neural stem cells (NSCs) and oligodendrocyte precursors (OPCs). In this study, we found that treatment with an HDACi, valproic acid (VPA), and T3, alone or in combination, directly affects encephalitogenic CD4+ T cells. VPA, but not T3, compromised their proliferation, while both molecules reduced the frequency of IL-17-producing cells. Transfer of T3, VPA and VPA/T3 treated encephalitogenic CD4+ T cells into naïve rats induced less severe EAE, indicating that the effects of these molecules are persistent and do not require their maintenance after the initial stimuli. Thus, we investigated the effect of acute treatment with VPA and l-thyroxine (T4), a precursor of T3, on myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein-induced EAE in Dark Agouti rats, a close mimic of MS. We found that a brief treatment after disease onset led to sustained amelioration of EAE and prevention of inflammatory demyelination in the CNS accompanied with a higher expression of myelin-related genes in the brain. Furthermore, the treatment modulated immune responses, reduced the number of CD4+ T cells and affected the Th1 differentiation program in the brain. Our data indicate that an acute treatment with VPA and T4 after the onset of EAE can produce persistent clinically relevant therapeutic effects by limiting the pathogenic immune reactions while promoting myelin gene expression. PMID:25149263

  18. The (not necessarily) convoluted role of basal radial glia in cortical neurogenesis.

    PubMed

    Hevner, Robert F; Haydar, Tarik F

    2012-02-01

    Recent advances in cell labeling and imaging techniques have dramatically expanded our knowledge of the neural precursor cells responsible for corticogenesis. In particular, radial glial cells are now known to generate several classes of restricted progenitors and neurons. While radial glial cells in the ventricular zone have received the most attention, it has become increasingly clear that a distinct subclass of radial glial cells situated in the subventricular zone (SVZ) and intermediate zone also play an important role in corticogenesis. These delaminated radial glial cells, which lack an apical process attached to the ventricular surface but maintain a basal process, were discovered over 3 decades ago. Recently, they have been further characterized as cortical progenitors and renamed outer, intermediate, or basal radial glia (bRG). Some of these studies indicated that bRG abundance in the outer SVZ (oSVZ) is correlated with enhanced gyrencephaly, particularly in primates and especially human, and therefore suggested that bRG may be responsible for the emergence and evolution of cerebral convolutions. In this issue of Cerebral Cortex, 2 papers provide new information about bRG in common marmosets, a near-lissencephalic primate, and in agouti, a near-gyrencephalic rodent (Garcia-Moreno et al. 2011; Kelava et al. 2011). They demonstrate that bRG are abundant and proliferate in inner as well as oSVZ, in both species. Together, these findings indicate that bRG and the oSVZ might not be correlated with gyrification or phylogeny. Rather, differential regulation of bRG and other progenitor types may enhance the adaptability and diversity of cortical morphogenesis. PMID:22116731

  19. Evidence that MDMA ('ecstasy') increases cannabinoid CB2 receptor expression in microglial cells: role in the neuroinflammatory response in rat brain.

    PubMed

    Torres, Elisa; Gutierrez-Lopez, Maria Dolores; Borcel, Erika; Peraile, Ines; Mayado, Andrea; O'Shea, Esther; Colado, Maria Isabel

    2010-04-01

    3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA, 'ecstasy') produces selective long-lasting serotonergic neurotoxicity in rats. The drug also produces acute hyperthermia which modulates the severity of the neurotoxic response. In addition, MDMA produces signs of neuroinflammation reflected as microglial activation and an increase in the release of interleukin-1beta, the latter of which appears to be a consequence of the hyperthermic response and to be implicated in the neurotoxicity induced by the drug. Over-expression of the cannabinoid CB2 receptor in microglia during non-immune and immune pathological conditions is thought to be aimed at controlling the production of neurotoxic factors such as proinflammatory cytokines. Our objective was to study the pattern of CB2 receptor expression following MDMA and to examine the effect of JWH-015 (a CB2 agonist) on the MDMA-induced neuroinflammatory response as well as 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) neurotoxicity. Adult Dark Agouti rats were given MDMA (12.5 mg/kg, i.p.) and killed 3 h or 24 h later for the determination of CB2 receptor expression. JWH-015 was given 48 h, 24 h and 0.5 h before MDMA and 1 h and/or 6 h later and animals were killed for the determination of microglial activation (3 h and 24 h) and 5-HT neurotoxicity (7 days). MDMA increased CB2 receptor expression shortly after administration and these receptors were found in microglia. JWH-015 decreased MDMA-induced microglial activation and interleukin-1beta release and slightly decreased MDMA-induced 5-HT neurotoxicity. In conclusion, CB2 receptor activation reduces the neuroinflammatory response following MDMA and provides partial neuroprotection against the drug. PMID:20067581

  20. Exposure of MC4R to agonist in the endoplasmic reticulum stabilizes an active conformation of the receptor that does not desensitize

    PubMed Central

    Granell, Susana; Molden, Brent M.; Baldini, Giulia

    2013-01-01

    Melanocortin-4 receptor (MC4R) is a G protein-coupled receptor expressed in neurons of the hypothalamus where it regulates food intake. MC4R responds to an agonist, α-melanocyte–stimulating hormone (α-MSH) and to an antagonist/inverse agonist, agouti-related peptide (AgRP), which are released by upstream neurons. Binding to α-MSH leads to stimulation of receptor activity and suppression of food intake, whereas AgRP has opposite effects. MC4R cycles constantly between the plasma membrane and endosomes and undergoes agonist-mediated desensitization by being routed to lysosomes. MC4R desensitization and increased AgRP expression are thought to decrease the effectiveness of MC4R agonists as an antiobesity treatment. In this study, α-MSH, instead of being delivered extracellularly, is targeted to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) of neuronal cells and cultured hypothalamic neurons. We find that the ER-targeted agonist associates with MC4R at this location, is transported to the cell surface, induces constant cAMP and AMP kinase signaling at maximal amplitude, abolishes desensitization of the receptor, and promotes both cell-surface expression and constant signaling by an obesity-linked MC4R variant, I316S, that otherwise is retained in the ER. Formation of the MC4R/agonist complex in the ER stabilizes the receptor in an active conformation that at the cell surface is insensitive to antagonism by AgRP and at the endosomes is refractory to routing to the lysosomes. The data indicate that targeting agonists to the ER can stabilize an active conformation of a G protein-coupled receptor that does not become desensitized, suggesting a target for therapy. PMID:24248383

  1. A Novel Analytical Strategy to Identify Fusion Transcripts between Repetitive Elements and Protein Coding-Exons Using RNA-Seq.

    PubMed

    Wang, Tianyuan; Santos, Janine H; Feng, Jian; Fargo, David C; Shen, Li; Riadi, Gonzalo; Keeley, Elizabeth; Rosh, Zachary S; Nestler, Eric J; Woychik, Richard P

    2016-01-01

    Repetitive elements (REs) comprise 40-60% of the mammalian genome and have been shown to epigenetically influence the expression of genes through the formation of fusion transcript (FTs). We previously showed that an intracisternal A particle forms an FT with the agouti gene in mice, causing obesity/type 2 diabetes. To determine the frequency of FTs genome-wide, we developed a TopHat-Fusion-based analytical pipeline to identify FTs with high specificity. We applied it to an RNA-seq dataset from the nucleus accumbens (NAc) of mice repeatedly exposed to cocaine. Cocaine was previously shown to increase the expression of certain REs in this brain region. Using this pipeline that can be applied to single- or paired-end reads, we identified 438 genes expressing 813 different FTs in the NAc. Although all types of studied repeats were present in FTs, simple sequence repeats were underrepresented. Most importantly, reverse-transcription and quantitative PCR validated the expression of selected FTs in an independent cohort of animals, which also revealed that some FTs are the prominent isoforms expressed in the NAc by some genes. In other RNA-seq datasets, developmental expression as well as tissue specificity of some FTs differed from their corresponding non-fusion counterparts. Finally, in silico analysis predicted changes in the structure of proteins encoded by some FTs, potentially resulting in gain or loss of function. Collectively, these results indicate the robustness of our pipeline in detecting these new isoforms of genes, which we believe provides a valuable tool to aid in better understanding the broad role of REs in mammalian cellular biology. PMID:27415830

  2. Genetic identification of a neural circuit that suppresses appetite

    PubMed Central

    Carter, Matthew E.; Soden, Marta E.; Zweifel, Larry S.; Palmiter, Richard D.

    2013-01-01

    Appetite suppression occurs following a meal and also during conditions when it is unfavorable to eat, such as during illness or exposure to toxins. A brain region hypothesized to play a role in appetite suppression is the parabrachial nucleus (PBN)1-3, a heterogeneous population of neurons surrounding the superior cerebellar peduncle in the brainstem. The PBN is thought to mediate the suppression of appetite induced by the anorectic hormones amylin and cholecystokinin, as well as lithium chloride and lipopolysaccharide, compounds that mimic the effects of toxic foods and bacterial infections, respectively4-6. Hyperactivity of the PBN is also thought to cause starvation following ablation of orexigenic agouti-related peptide (AgRP) neurons in adult mice1,7. However, the identities of PBN neurons that regulate feeding are unknown, as are the functionally relevant downstream projections. Here we identify calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP)-expressing neurons in the outer external lateral subdivision of the PBN that project to the laterocapsular division of the central nucleus of the amygdala (CeAlc) as forming a functionally important circuit for the suppression of appetite. Using genetically-encoded anatomical, optogenetic8, and pharmacogenetic9 tools, we demonstrate that activation of PBelo CGRP neurons projecting to the CeAlc suppresses appetite. In contrast, inhibition of these neurons increases food intake in circumstances when mice do not normally eat and prevents starvation in adult AgRP neuron-ablated mice. Taken together, our data demonstrate that this neural circuit from the PBN to CeAlc mediates appetite suppression in conditions when it is unfavorable to eat. This neural circuit may provide targets for therapeutic intervention to overcome or promote appetite. PMID:24121436

  3. Deciphering a neuronal circuit that mediates loss of appetite

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Qi; Clark, Michael S.; Palmiter, Richard D.

    2014-01-01

    Hypothalamic neurons that co-express agouti-related protein (AgRP), neuropeptide Y (NPY), and γ-amino-butyric acid (GABA) are known to promote feeding and weight gain by integration of various nutritional, hormonal, and neuronal signals1,2. Ablation of these neurons leads to cessation of feeding that is accompanied by Fos activation in most regions where they project3–6. Previous experiments indicate that the ensuing starvation is due to aberrant activation of the parabrachial nucleus (PBN) and it could be prevented by facilitating GABAA receptor signaling in the PBN within a critical adaptation period5. We hypothesized that loss of GABAergic inhibition from AgRP neurons to the PBN leads to abnormal activation of the PBN, which in turn inhibits feeding. However, the source of the excitatory inputs to the PBN was unknown. Here we show that glutamatergic neurons in the nucleus tractus solitarius (NTS) and caudal serotonergic neurons control the excitability of PBN neurons and inhibit feeding. Blockade of 5-HT3 receptor signaling in the rostral NTS by either chronic administration of ondansetron or genetic inactivation of Tph2 in caudal serotonergic neurons that project to the NTS protects against starvation when AgRP neurons are ablated. Moreover, genetic inactivation of glutamatergic signaling by the NTS onto N-methyl D-aspartate (NMDA)-type glutamate receptors in the PBN prevents starvation. We also demonstrate that suppressing glutamatergic output of the PBN reinstates normal appetite after AgRP neuron ablation, whereas it promotes weight gain without AgRP neuron ablation. Hence, we identify the PBN as an important hub that integrates signals from several brain regions to bidirectionally modulate feeding and body weight. PMID:22419158

  4. Development of a novel pink-eyed dilution mouse model showing progressive darkening of the eyes and coat hair with aging

    PubMed Central

    ISHIKAWA, Akira; SUGIYAMA, Makoto; HONDO, Eiichi; KINOSHITA, Keiji; YAMAGISHI, Yuki

    2015-01-01

    Oca2p-cas (oculocutaneous albinism II; pink-eyed dilution castaneus) is a coat color mutant gene on mouse chromosome 7 that arose spontaneously in wild Mus musculus castaneus mice. Mice homozygous for Oca2p-cas usually exhibit pink eyes and gray coat hair on the non-agouti genetic background, and this ordinary phenotype remains unchanged throughout life. During breeding of a mixed strain carrying this gene on the C57BL/6J background, we discovered a novel spontaneous mutation that causes darkening of the eyes and coat hair with aging. In this study, we developed a novel mouse model showing this unique phenotype. Gross observations revealed that the pink eyes and gray coat hair of the novel mutant young mice became progressively darker in color by approximately 3 months after birth. Light and transmission-electron microscopic observations revealed a marked increase in melanin pigmentation of coat hair shafts and choroid of the eye in the novel mice compared to that in the ordinary mice. Sequence analysis of Oca2p-cas revealed a 4.1-kb deletion involving exons 15 and 16 of its wild-type gene. However, there was no sequence difference between the two types of mutant mice. Mating experiments suggested that the novel mutant phenotype was not inherited in a simple fashion, due to incomplete penetrance. The novel spontaneous mutant mouse is the first example of progressive hair darkening animals and is an essential animal model for understanding of the regulation mechanisms of melanin biosynthesis with aging. PMID:25739360

  5. Dysfunction of intraflagellar transport-A causes hyperphagia-induced obesity and metabolic syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Jacobs, Damon T.; Silva, Luciane M.; Allard, Bailey A.; Schonfeld, Michael P.; Chatterjee, Anindita; Talbott, George C.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Primary cilia extend from the plasma membrane of most vertebrate cells and mediate signaling pathways. Ciliary dysfunction underlies ciliopathies, which are genetic syndromes that manifest multiple clinical features, including renal cystic disease and obesity. THM1 (also termed TTC21B or IFT139) encodes a component of the intraflagellar transport-A complex and mutations in THM1 have been identified in 5% of individuals with ciliopathies. Consistent with this, deletion of murine Thm1 during late embryonic development results in cystic kidney disease. Here, we report that deletion of murine Thm1 during adulthood results in obesity, diabetes, hypertension and fatty liver disease, with gender differences in susceptibility to weight gain and metabolic dysfunction. Pair-feeding of Thm1 conditional knock-out mice relative to control littermates prevented the obesity and related disorders, indicating that hyperphagia caused the obese phenotype. Thm1 ablation resulted in increased localization of adenylyl cyclase III in primary cilia that were shortened, with bulbous distal tips on neurons of the hypothalamic arcuate nucleus, an integrative center for signals that regulate feeding and activity. In pre-obese Thm1 conditional knock-out mice, expression of anorexogenic pro-opiomelanocortin (Pomc) was decreased by 50% in the arcuate nucleus, which likely caused the hyperphagia. Fasting of Thm1 conditional knock-out mice did not alter Pomc nor orexogenic agouti-related neuropeptide (Agrp) expression, suggesting impaired sensing of changes in peripheral signals. Together, these data indicate that the Thm1-mutant ciliary defect diminishes sensitivity to feeding signals, which alters appetite regulation and leads to hyperphagia, obesity and metabolic disease. PMID:27482817

  6. Effect of Zinc on Appetite Regulatory Peptides in the Hypothalamus of Salmonella-Challenged Broiler Chickens.

    PubMed

    Hu, Xiyi; Sheikhahmadi, Ardashir; Li, Xianlei; Wang, Yufeng; Jiao, Hongchao; Lin, Hai; Zhang, Bingkun; Song, Zhigang

    2016-07-01

    The effects of dietary Zinc (Zn) supplementation on the gene expression of appetite regulatory peptides were investigated in Salmonella-infected broiler chickens. Broiler chickens (Arbor Acres, 1 day old) were allocated randomly into 24 pens of 10 birds. The chickens from 12 pens were fed with basal diet and the other with basal diet supplemented with Zn (ZnSO4·H2O, 120 mg/kg). At 5 days of age, the chickens were divided into 4 treatments with 6 pens: basal diet; basal diet and Salmonella challenge; Zn-supplemented diet; Zn-supplemented diet and Salmonella challenge. At 42 days of age, the hypothalamus from 6 chickens per treatment (1 chicken per pen) was individually collected for gene expression determination. Results showed that dietary supplementation of Zn reduced the gene expression of hypothalamic ghrelin and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) (P < 0.05). Salmonella infection upregulated the messenger RNA (mRNA) levels of hypothalamic neuropeptide Y (NPY) and TNF-α. Zn supplementation and Salmonella inoculation were significantly correlated with the mRNA levels of toll-like receptor 2-1 (P < 0.05). However, neither dietary Zn supplementation nor Salmonella inoculation had significant effect on hypothalamic agouti-related protein, cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript, and pro-opiomelanocortin. This study shows that dietary Zn supplementation promoted orexigenic appetite regulatory peptides and reduced the expression of the inflammatory cytokine TNF-α in the hypothalamus of Salmonella-challenged broilers. PMID:26637494

  7. Expression and network analysis of genes related to melanocyte development in the Silky Fowl and White Leghorn embryos.

    PubMed

    Li, Yulin; Zhu, Xuping; Yang, Liu; Li, Junying; Lian, Zhengxing; Li, Ning; Deng, Xuemei

    2011-02-01

    Silky Fowl is a natural mutant with hyperpigmentation of various internal tissues. Although the mechanism of hyperpigmentation remains unclear, recent studies have shown that the abnormal migration of melanoblast and the absence of environmental barrier molecules are responsible for the hyperpigmentation in Silky Fowl. In this study, 13 genes related to melanocyte development were selected to detect expression changes between Silky Fowl and White Leghorn [including SRY-box 10 (Sox10), paired box (Pax3), stem cell factor (Scf), v-kit Hardy-Zuckerman 4 feline sarcoma viral oncogene homolog (Kit), endothelin type-B receptor (Ednrb), endothelin 3 (Edn3), microphthalmia-associated transcription factor (Mitf), tyrosinase (Tyr), tyrosinase-related protein-1 (Trp1), tyrosinase-related protein-2 (Trp2), melanocortin-1 receptor (Mc1r), Agouti-related proteins (Agrp), and Proopiomelanocortin (Pomc)]. Transcript expression was detected in 11 stages from 2.5 to 15 days of incubation. In these embryonic periods, Mitf, Kit, Scf, and Agrp expressed earlier in Silky Fowl than in White Leghorn. Sox10, Ednrb, Kit, Mc1r, and Agrp, associating with the proliferation and differentiation of melanoblast, expressed higher (P < 0.05) in Silky Fowl than White Leghorn during 5-6 days of incubation. After day 8 of incubation, Mitf, Tyr, Trp1, Trp2, and Mc1r expressed higher (P < 0.05) in Silky Fowl than White Leghorn, while Agrp expressed higher (P < 0.05) in White Leghorn than Silky Fowl. Moreover, a regulatory network for melanocyte development was constructed based on the expression data. The network predicted novel regulatory relationships and confirmed relationships that have been reported. These results provide biological insight into the molecular mechanism of hyperpigmentation in the Silky Fowl. However, further investigation is needed to confirm these regulatory relationships. PMID:20848220

  8. Effect of corticosterone on gene expression of feed intake regulatory peptides in laying hens.

    PubMed

    Liu, Lei; Song, Zhigang; Sheikhahmadi, Ardashir; Jiao, Hongchao; Lin, Hai

    2012-08-01

    The present study was conducted to explore the effects of corticosterone (CORT) on the regulation of appetite-associated genes in laying hens. Forty eight laying hens were randomly divided into two groups: one received subcutaneous injection of CORT (2mg/kg body weight, CORT-exposed) and the other received sham-treatment (Control). Treatment of hens with CORT stimulated an increase (P<0.05) in plasma CORT, glucose, uric acid (UA), insulin, cholesterol (Chol) and triiodothyronine (T(3)), but the concentrations of plasma non-esterified fatty acids (NEFA) and triacylglycerol (TG) were decreased (P<0.05). CORT treatment had no significant effect (P>0.05) on the mRNA levels of neuropeptide Y (NPY), corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH), melanocortin receptor 4 and 5 (MCR-4 and MCR-5) and cholecystokinin (CCK) in the hypothalamus when compared with control hens. However, the expression of pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC), agouti-related protein (AgRP) and melanocortin recepter 1 (MCR-1) were significantly (P<0.05) suppressed while the mRNA levels of ghrelin and cocaine-and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART) were significantly upregulated (P<0.05) in CORT-treated hens. Treatment of laying hens with CORT had no significant (P>0.05) effect on the mRNA levels of CCK in the glandular stomach and the duodenum, and those of ghrelin in the glandular stomach, the duodenum and the jejunum. However, the mRNA levels of CCK in the jejunum and the ileum, and those of ghrelin in the ileum were significantly (P<0.05) suppressed by CORT treatment. In conclusion, these results suggest that CORT plays a unique role in some special neuropeptides (e.g., ghrelin, CART, POMC, CCK and MCRs) and a dynamic balance between these appetite-associated peptides in the hypothalamus and the gastrointestinal tract defines the feeding status of CORT-exposed laying hens. PMID:22554475

  9. Enhanced susceptibility of ovaries from obese mice to 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene-induced DNA damage

    SciTech Connect

    Ganesan, Shanthi Nteeba, Jackson Keating, Aileen F.

    2014-12-01

    7,12-Dimethylbenz[a]anthracene (DMBA) depletes ovarian follicles and induces DNA damage in extra-ovarian tissues, thus, we investigated ovarian DMBA-induced DNA damage. Additionally, since obesity is associated with increased offspring birth defect incidence, we hypothesized that a DMBA-induced DNA damage response (DDR) is compromised in ovaries from obese females. Wild type (lean) non agouti (a/a) and KK.Cg-Ay/J heterozygote (obese) mice were dosed with sesame oil or DMBA (1 mg/kg; intraperitoneal injection) at 18 weeks of age, for 14 days. Total ovarian RNA and protein were isolated and abundance of Ataxia telangiectasia mutated (Atm), X-ray repair complementing defective repair in Chinese hamster cells 6 (Xrcc6), breast cancer type 1 (Brca1), Rad 51 homolog (Rad51), poly [ADP-ribose] polymerase 1 (Parp1) and protein kinase, DNA-activated, catalytic polypeptide (Prkdc) were quantified by RT-PCR or Western blot. Phosphorylated histone H2AX (γH2AX) level was determined by Western blotting. Obesity decreased (P < 0.05) basal protein abundance of PRKDC and BRCA1 proteins but increased (P < 0.05) γH2AX and PARP1 proteins. Ovarian ATM, XRCC6, PRKDC, RAD51 and PARP1 proteins were increased (P < 0.05) by DMBA exposure in lean mice. A blunted DMBA-induced increase (P < 0.05) in XRCC6, PRKDC, RAD51 and BRCA1 was observed in ovaries from obese mice, relative to lean counterparts. Taken together, DMBA exposure induced γH2AX as well as the ovarian DDR, supporting that DMBA causes ovarian DNA damage. Additionally, ovarian DDR was partially attenuated in obese females raising concern that obesity may be an additive factor during chemical-induced ovotoxicity. - Highlights: • DMBA induces markers of ovarian DNA damage. • Obesity induces low level ovarian DNA damage. • DMBA-induced DNA repair response is altered by obesity.

  10. Sex differences in the physiology of eating

    PubMed Central

    Asarian, Lori

    2013-01-01

    Hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis function fundamentally affects the physiology of eating. We review sex differences in the physiological and pathophysiological controls of amounts eaten in rats, mice, monkeys, and humans. These controls result from interactions among genetic effects, organizational effects of reproductive hormones (i.e., permanent early developmental effects), and activational effects of these hormones (i.e., effects dependent on hormone levels). Male-female sex differences in the physiology of eating involve both organizational and activational effects of androgens and estrogens. An activational effect of estrogens decreases eating 1) during the periovulatory period of the ovarian cycle in rats, mice, monkeys, and women and 2) tonically between puberty and reproductive senescence or ovariectomy in rats and monkeys, sometimes in mice, and possibly in women. Estrogens acting on estrogen receptor-α (ERα) in the caudal medial nucleus of the solitary tract appear to mediate these effects in rats. Androgens, prolactin, and other reproductive hormones also affect eating in rats. Sex differences in eating are mediated by alterations in orosensory capacity and hedonics, gastric mechanoreception, ghrelin, CCK, glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1), glucagon, insulin, amylin, apolipoprotein A-IV, fatty-acid oxidation, and leptin. The control of eating by central neurochemical signaling via serotonin, MSH, neuropeptide Y, Agouti-related peptide (AgRP), melanin-concentrating hormone, and dopamine is modulated by HPG function. Finally, sex differences in the physiology of eating may contribute to human obesity, anorexia nervosa, and binge eating. The variety and physiological importance of what has been learned so far warrant intensifying basic, translational, and clinical research on sex differences in eating. PMID:23904103

  11. Plasticity in gastrointestinal morphology and enzyme activity in lactating striped hamsters (Cricetulus barabensis).

    PubMed

    Zhang, Ji-Ying; Zhao, Xiao-Ya; Wen, Jing; Tan, Song; Zhao, Zhi-Jun

    2016-05-01

    In small mammals, marked phenotypic plasticity of digestive physiology has been shown to make it easier for them to cope with energetically stressful periods, such as lactation. It has been proposed that the capacity of the gut to digest and absorb food is not the limiting factor to sustained energy intake (SusEI) during peak lactation. In this study, plasticity in energy intake and gastrointestinal morphology was examined in striped hamsters at different stages of reproduction and when raising litters of different sizes. Mechanisms associated with digestive enzymes and neuroendocrine hormones underpinning the plasticity were also examined. Females significantly increased energy intake, digestibility, digestive tract mass and the activity of stomach pepsin and small intestine maltase, sucrase and aminopeptidase in peak lactation compared with the non-productive and post-lactating periods. Further, females raising large litters significantly increased energy intake, digestibility, gastrointestinal mass and activity of digestive enzymes, and weaned heavier offspring compared with those nursing small and medium litters, indicating that the significant plasticity of digestive physiology increased reproductive performance. Agouti-related protein (AgRP) mRNA expression in the hypothalamus was up-regulated significantly in females raising large litters relative to those raising small litters. Serum leptin levels, and mRNA expression of hypothalamus neuropeptide Y (NPY) and the anorexigenic neuropeptides pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) and cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART) did not differ among females raising small, medium and large litters. Leptin levels in lactation may only reflect a state of energy balance rather than being the prime driver of hyperphagia. Some hypothalamic neuropeptides, such as NPY, POMC and CART, may be involved in the limits to the SusEI during lactation. PMID:26944487

  12. Chemical Identity of Hypothalamic Neurons Engaged by Leptin in Reproductive Control

    PubMed Central

    Ratra, Dhirender V.; Elias, Carol F.

    2014-01-01

    The adipocyte-derived hormone leptin plays a critical role as a metabolic cue for the reproductive system. Conditions of low leptin levels observed in negative energy balance and loss-of-function mutations of leptin or leptin receptor genes are characterized by decreased fertility. In recent years, advances have been made identifying possible hypothalamic neurons relaying leptin’s neuroendocrine control of reproductive function. Studies from different laboratories have demonstrated that leptin action in the hypothalamo-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis is exerted via hypothalamic interneurons regulating gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) cells, oppose to direct action on GnRH neurons. Following this observation, studies focused on identifying leptin responsive interneurons. Using a Cre-loxP system to re-express or delete the leptin receptor long form (LepRb) from Kisspeptin neurons, our laboratory found that leptin’s action on Kiss1 cells is neither required nor sufficient for leptin’s role in reproductive function. Endogenous re-expression of LepRb however, in glutamatergic neurons of the ventral premammilary nucleus (PMV) or ablation of agouti-related protein (AgRP) neurons from leptin signaling-deficient mice are both sufficient to induce puberty and improve fertility. Recent studies have also shown that leptin action in first order GABAergic neurons is required for fertility. Together, these studies begin to delineate key neuronal populations involved in leptin’s action in reproduction. In this review, we discuss recent advances made in the field and highlight the questions yet to be answered. PMID:24915437

  13. Evolution of alanine:glyoxylate aminotransferase 1 peroxisomal and mitochondrial targeting. A survey of its subcellular distribution in the livers of various representatives of the classes Mammalia, Aves and Amphibia.

    PubMed

    Danpure, C J; Fryer, P; Jennings, P R; Allsop, J; Griffiths, S; Cunningham, A

    1994-08-01

    As part of a wider study on the molecular evolution of alanine:glyoxylate aminotransferase 1 (AGT1) intracellular compartmentalization, we have determined the subcellular distribution of immunoreactive AGT1, using postembedding protein A-gold immunoelectron microscopy, in the livers of various members of the classes Mammalia, Aves, and Amphibia. As far as organellar distribution is concerned, three categories could be distinguished. In members of the first category (type I), all, or nearly all, of the immunoreactive AGT1 was concentrated within the peroxisomes. In the second category (type II), AGT1 was found more evenly distributed in both peroxisomes and mitochondria. In the third category (type III), AGT1 was localized mainly within the mitochondria with much lower, but widely variable, amounts in the peroxisomes. Type I animals include the human, two great apes (gorilla, orangutan), two Old World monkeys (anubis baboon, Japanese macaque), a New World monkey (white-faced Saki monkey), a lago, morph (European rabbit), a bat (Seba's short-tailed fruit bat), two caviomorph rodents (guinea pig, orange-rumped agouti), and two Australian marsupials (koala, Bennett's wallaby). Type II animals include two New World monkeys (common marmoset, cotton-top tamarin), three prosimians (brown lemur, fat-tailed dwarf lemur, pygmy slow loris), five rodents (a hybrid crested porcupine, Colombian ground squirrel, laboratory rat, laboratory mouse, golden hamster), an American marsupial (grey short-tailed opossum), and a bird (raven). Type III animals include the large tree shrew, three insectivores (common Eurasian mole, European hedgehog, house shrew), four carnivores (domestic cat, ocelot, domestic dog, polecat ferret), and an amphibian (common frog). In addition to these categories, some animals (e.g. guinea pig, common frog) possessed significant amounts of cytosolic AGT1. Whereas the subcellular distribution of AGT1 in some orders (e.g. Insectivora and Carnivora) did not appear

  14. Peptides and food intake.

    PubMed

    Sobrino Crespo, Carmen; Perianes Cachero, Aránzazu; Puebla Jiménez, Lilian; Barrios, Vicente; Arilla Ferreiro, Eduardo

    2014-01-01

    The mechanisms for controlling food intake involve mainly an interplay between gut, brain, and adipose tissue (AT), among the major organs. Parasympathetic, sympathetic, and other systems are required for communication between the brain satiety center, gut, and AT. These neuronal circuits include a variety of peptides and hormones, being ghrelin the only orexigenic molecule known, whereas the plethora of other factors are inhibitors of appetite, suggesting its physiological relevance in the regulation of food intake and energy homeostasis. Nutrients generated by food digestion have been proposed to activate G-protein-coupled receptors on the luminal side of enteroendocrine cells, e.g., the L-cells. This stimulates the release of gut hormones into the circulation such as glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1), oxyntomodulin, pancreatic polypeptides, peptide tyrosine tyrosine, and cholecystokinin, which inhibit appetite. Ghrelin is a peptide secreted from the stomach and, in contrast to other gut hormones, plasma levels decrease after a meal and potently stimulate food intake. Other circulating factors such as insulin and leptin relay information regarding long-term energy stores. Both hormones circulate at proportional levels to body fat content, enter the CNS proportionally to their plasma levels, and reduce food intake. Circulating hormones can influence the activity of the arcuate nucleus (ARC) neurons of the hypothalamus, after passing across the median eminence. Circulating factors such as gut hormones may also influence the nucleus of the tractus solitarius (NTS) through the adjacent circumventricular organ. On the other hand, gastrointestinal vagal afferents converge in the NTS of the brainstem. Neural projections from the NTS, in turn, carry signals to the hypothalamus. The ARC acts as an integrative center, with two major subpopulations of neurons influencing appetite, one of them coexpressing neuropeptide Y and agouti-related protein (AgRP) that increases food

  15. Peptides and Food Intake

    PubMed Central

    Sobrino Crespo, Carmen; Perianes Cachero, Aránzazu; Puebla Jiménez, Lilian; Barrios, Vicente; Arilla Ferreiro, Eduardo

    2014-01-01

    The mechanisms for controlling food intake involve mainly an interplay between gut, brain, and adipose tissue (AT), among the major organs. Parasympathetic, sympathetic, and other systems are required for communication between the brain satiety center, gut, and AT. These neuronal circuits include a variety of peptides and hormones, being ghrelin the only orexigenic molecule known, whereas the plethora of other factors are inhibitors of appetite, suggesting its physiological relevance in the regulation of food intake and energy homeostasis. Nutrients generated by food digestion have been proposed to activate G-protein-coupled receptors on the luminal side of enteroendocrine cells, e.g., the L-cells. This stimulates the release of gut hormones into the circulation such as glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1), oxyntomodulin, pancreatic polypeptides, peptide tyrosine tyrosine, and cholecystokinin, which inhibit appetite. Ghrelin is a peptide secreted from the stomach and, in contrast to other gut hormones, plasma levels decrease after a meal and potently stimulate food intake. Other circulating factors such as insulin and leptin relay information regarding long-term energy stores. Both hormones circulate at proportional levels to body fat content, enter the CNS proportionally to their plasma levels, and reduce food intake. Circulating hormones can influence the activity of the arcuate nucleus (ARC) neurons of the hypothalamus, after passing across the median eminence. Circulating factors such as gut hormones may also influence the nucleus of the tractus solitarius (NTS) through the adjacent circumventricular organ. On the other hand, gastrointestinal vagal afferents converge in the NTS of the brainstem. Neural projections from the NTS, in turn, carry signals to the hypothalamus. The ARC acts as an integrative center, with two major subpopulations of neurons influencing appetite, one of them coexpressing neuropeptide Y and agouti-related protein (AgRP) that increases food

  16. The role of GluN2A and GluN2B NMDA receptor subunits in AgRP and POMC neurons on body weight and glucose homeostasis

    PubMed Central

    Üner, Aykut; Gonçalves, Gabriel H.M.; Li, Wenjing; Porceban, Matheus; Caron, Nicole; Schönke, Milena; Delpire, Eric; Sakimura, Kenji; Bjørbæk, Christian

    2015-01-01

    Objective Hypothalamic agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) expressing neurons play critical roles in control of energy balance. Glutamatergic input via n-methyl-d-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) is pivotal for regulation of neuronal activity and is required in AgRP neurons for normal body weight homeostasis. NMDARs typically consist of the obligatory GluN1 subunit and different GluN2 subunits, the latter exerting crucial differential effects on channel activity and neuronal function. Currently, the role of specific GluN2 subunits in AgRP and POMC neurons on whole body energy and glucose balance is unknown. Methods We used the cre-lox system to genetically delete GluN2A or GluN2B only from AgRP or POMC neurons in mice. Mice were then subjected to metabolic analyses and assessment of AgRP and POMC neuronal function through morphological studies. Results We show that loss of GluN2B from AgRP neurons reduces body weight, fat mass, and food intake, whereas GluN2B in POMC neurons is not required for normal energy balance control. GluN2A subunits in either AgRP or POMC neurons are not required for regulation of body weight. Deletion of GluN2B reduces the number of AgRP neurons and decreases their dendritic length. In addition, loss of GluN2B in AgRP neurons of the morbidly obese and severely diabetic leptin-deficient Lepob/ob mice does not affect body weight and food intake but, remarkably, leads to full correction of hyperglycemia. Lepob/ob mice lacking GluN2B in AgRP neurons are also more sensitive to leptin's anti-obesity actions. Conclusions GluN2B-containing NMDA receptors in AgRP neurons play a critical role in central control of body weight homeostasis and blood glucose balance via mechanisms that likely involve regulation of AgRP neuronal survival and structure, and modulation of hypothalamic leptin action. PMID:26500840

  17. Supplementation of branched-chain amino acids to a reduced-protein diet improves growth performance in piglets: involvement of increased feed intake and direct muscle growth-promoting effect.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Liufeng; Wei, Hongkui; Cheng, Chuanshang; Xiang, Quanhang; Pang, Jiaman; Peng, Jian

    2016-06-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate whether supplementing branched-chain amino acids (AA) (BCAA) along with a reduced-protein diet increases piglet growth, and whether elevated feed intake and muscle growth-promoting effect contribute to this improvement. In Expt 1, twenty-eight weanling piglets were randomly fed one of the following four diets: a positive control (PC) diet, a reduced-protein negative control (NC) diet, an NC diet supplemented with BCAA to the same levels as in the PC diet (test 1 (T1)) and an NC diet supplemented with a 2-fold dose of BCAA in T1 diet (test 2 (T2)) for 28 d. In Expt 2, twenty-one weanling piglets were randomly assigned to NC, T1 and pair-fed T1 (P) groups. NC and T1 diets were the same as in Expt 1, whereas piglets in the P group were individually pair-fed with the NC group. In Expt 1, the NC group had reduced piglet growth and feed intake compared with the PC group, which were restored in T1 and T2 groups, but no differences were detected between T1 and T2 groups. In Expt 2, T1 and P groups showed increases in growth and mass of some muscles compared with the NC group. Increased feed intake after BCAA supplementation was associated with increased mRNA expressions of agouti-related peptide and co-express neuropeptide Y (NPY) and phosphorylation of mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) and ribosomal protein S6 kinase 1 (S6K1), as well as decreased mRNA expressions of melanocortin-4 receptor and cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript and phosphorylation of eukaryotic initiation factor 2α in the hypothalamus. No differences were observed among PC, T1 and T2 groups except for higher NPY mRNA expression in the T2 group than in the PC group (Expt 1). Phosphorylation of mTOR and S6K1 in muscle was enhanced after BCAA supplementation, which was independent of change in feed intake (Expt 2). In conclusion, supplementing BCAA to reduced-protein diets increases feed intake and muscle mass, and contributes to better growth

  18. Intermittent Moderate Energy Restriction Improves Weight Loss Efficiency in Diet-Induced Obese Mice

    PubMed Central

    Seimon, Radhika V.; Shi, Yan-Chuan; Slack, Katy; Lee, Kailun; Fernando, Hamish A.; Nguyen, Amy D.; Zhang, Lei; Lin, Shu; Enriquez, Ronaldo F.; Lau, Jackie

    2016-01-01

    Background Intermittent severe energy restriction is popular for weight management. To investigate whether intermittent moderate energy restriction may improve this approach by enhancing weight loss efficiency, we conducted a study in mice, where energy intake can be controlled. Methods Male C57/Bl6 mice that had been rendered obese by an ad libitum diet high in fat and sugar for 22 weeks were then fed one of two energy-restricted normal chow diets for a 12-week weight loss phase. The continuous diet (CD) provided 82% of the energy intake of age-matched ad libitum chow-fed controls. The intermittent diet (ID) provided cycles of 82% of control intake for 5–6 consecutive days, and ad libitum intake for 1–3 days. Weight loss efficiency during this phase was calculated as (total weight change) ÷ [(total energy intake of mice on CD or ID)–(total average energy intake of controls)]. Subsets of mice then underwent a 3-week weight regain phase involving ad libitum re-feeding. Results Mice on the ID showed transient hyperphagia relative to controls during each 1–3-day ad libitum feeding period, and overall ate significantly more than CD mice (91.1±1.0 versus 82.2±0.5% of control intake respectively, n = 10, P<0.05). There were no significant differences between CD and ID groups at the end of the weight loss or weight regain phases with respect to body weight, fat mass, circulating glucose or insulin concentrations, or the insulin resistance index. Weight loss efficiency was significantly greater with ID than with CD (0.042±0.007 versus 0.018±0.001 g/kJ, n = 10, P<0.01). Mice on the CD exhibited significantly greater hypothalamic mRNA expression of proopiomelanocortin (POMC) relative to ID and control mice, with no differences in neuropeptide Y or agouti-related peptide mRNA expression between energy-restricted groups. Conclusion Intermittent moderate energy restriction may offer an advantage over continuous moderate energy restriction, because it induces

  19. Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging of Rats with Experimental Autoimmune Encephalomyelitis Reveals Brain Cortex Remodeling

    PubMed Central

    Tambalo, Stefano; Peruzzotti-Jametti, Luca; Rigolio, Roberta; Fiorini, Silvia; Bontempi, Pietro; Mallucci, Giulia; Balzarotti, Beatrice; Marmiroli, Paola; Sbarbati, Andrea; Cavaletti, Guido

    2015-01-01

    Cortical reorganization occurring in multiple sclerosis (MS) patients is thought to play a key role in limiting the effect of structural tissue damage. Conversely, its exhaustion may contribute to the irreversible disability that accumulates with disease progression. Several aspects of MS-related cortical reorganization, including the overall functional effect and likely modulation by therapies, still remain to be elucidated. The aim of this work was to assess the extent of functional cortical reorganization and its brain structural/pathological correlates in Dark Agouti rats with experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), a widely accepted preclinical model of chronic MS. Morphological and functional MRI (fMRI) were performed before disease induction and during the relapsing and chronic phases of EAE. During somatosensory stimulation of the right forepaw, fMRI demonstrated that cortical reorganization occurs in both relapsing and chronic phases of EAE with increased activated volume and decreased laterality index versus baseline values. Voxel-based morphometry demonstrated gray matter (GM) atrophy in the cerebral cortex, and both GM and white matter atrophy were assessed by ex vivo pathology of the sensorimotor cortex and corpus callosum. Neuroinflammation persisted in the relapsing and chronic phases, with dendritic spine density in the layer IV sensory neurons inversely correlating with the number of cluster of differentiation 45-positive inflammatory lesions. Our work provides an innovative experimental platform that may be pivotal for the comprehension of key mechanisms responsible for the accumulation of irreversible brain damage and for the development of innovative therapies to reduce disability in EAE/MS. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Since the early 2000s, functional MRI (fMRI) has demonstrated profound modifications in the recruitment of cortical areas during motor, cognitive, and sensory tasks in multiple sclerosis (MS) patients. Experimental autoimmune

  20. Hypothalamic gene expression during voluntary hypophagia in the Sprague-Dawley rat on withdrawal of the palatable liquid diet, Ensure.

    PubMed

    Mercer, Julian G; Duncan, Jacqueline S; Archer, Zoe A

    2014-04-10

    Sprague-Dawley rats over-consume calories over a 10 week period and develop diet-induced obesity (c. 100 g body weight differential vs controls) when fed a control pellet diet supplemented with chocolate Ensure liquid. Subsequent withdrawal of Ensure immediately reduces caloric intake by more than 50%, and results in weight loss, despite control pellet being available ad libitum. To assess the molecular underpinnings of this phenomenon, brains were processed for energy balance and food reward-related gene expression analysis at two time points, 24 h and 4 days after the withdrawal of Ensure, when energy intake was suppressed. Gene expression levels in hypothalamic arcuate nucleus and forebrain nucleus accumbens were compared with rats pair-fed to the same energy intake, i.e. imposed negative energy balance, and to controls fed control pellet ad libitum throughout. Cumulative energy intake was approximately 50% lower across the 4 day post-Ensure period, giving rise to a small reduction in body weight although body adiposity and blood leptin remained elevated (c. 100% and 50%, respectively vs controls) in rats that had previously been fed Ensure. In contrast, pair-feeding reduced blood insulin and leptin by 33% and 55%, respectively. Hypothalamic expression of neuropeptide Y and agouti-related peptide was down-regulated at 24 h in rats previously fed Ensure, indicative of the apparent counter-regulatory changes seen in diet-induced obesity, but was normalised between the 24 h and 4 day time points. By contrast, the effect of cumulative negative energy balance in the pair-fed groups increased with time, up-regulating expression of the orexigenic neuropeptides. There was also a reduction of suppressor of cytokine signalling-3 gene expression in pair-fed groups where leptin levels were low. There were no changes in opioid, dopamine receptor or cannabinoid receptor expression in the nucleus accumbens. Feedback from diet-induced obesity appears to drive voluntary

  1. Reconstructing CNV genotypes using segregation analysis: combining pedigree information with CNV assay

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Repeated blocks of genome sequence have been shown to be associated with genetic diversity and disease risk in humans, and with phenotypic diversity in model organisms and domestic animals. Reliable tests are desirable to determine whether individuals are carriers of copy number variants associated with disease risk in humans and livestock, or associated with economically important traits in livestock. In some cases, copy number variants affect the phenotype through a dosage effect but in other cases, allele combinations have non-additive effects. In the latter cases, it has been difficult to develop tests because assays typically return an estimate of the sum of the copy number counts on the maternally and paternally inherited chromosome segments, and this sum does not uniquely determine the allele configuration. In this study, we show that there is an old solution to this new problem: segregation analysis, which has been used for many years to infer alleles in pedigreed populations. Methods Segregation analysis was used to estimate copy number alleles from assay data on simulated half-sib sheep populations. Copy number variation at the Agouti locus, known to be responsible for the recessive self-colour black phenotype, was used as a model for the simulation and an appropriate penetrance function was derived. The precision with which carriers and non-carriers of the undesirable single copy allele could be identified, was used to evaluate the method for various family sizes, assay strategies and assay accuracies. Results Using relationship data and segregation analysis, the probabilities of carrying the copy number alleles responsible for black or white fleece were estimated with much greater precision than by analyzing assay results for animals individually. The proportion of lambs correctly identified as non-carriers of the undesirable allele increased from 7% when the lambs were analysed alone to 80% when the lambs were analysed in half-sib families

  2. Inhibitory Effect of the Melanocortin Receptor Agonist Melanotan-II (MTII) on Feeding Depends on Dietary Fat Content and not Obesity in Rats on Free-Choice Diets

    PubMed Central

    van den Heuvel, José K.; Eggels, Leslie; van Rozen, Andrea J.; Fliers, Eric; Kalsbeek, Andries; Adan, Roger A. H.; la Fleur, Susanne E.

    2015-01-01

    Introduction: Conflicting data exist on sensitivity changes of the melanocortin system during diet-induced obesity. We hypothesized that melanocortin sensitivity depends on diet composition, in particular on the fat content rather than the level of obesity. The aim of this study was to determine the influence of diet composition on feeding responses to a melanocortin receptor agonist, using free-choice diets that differ in food components. Methods: Male Wistar rats were subjected to a chow (CHOW) diet or a free-choice (fc) diet of either chow, saturated fat and liquid sugar (fcHFHS), chow and saturated fat (fcHF), or chow and liquid sugar (fcHS) for 4 weeks. Melanocortin sensitivity was tested by measuring food intake following administration of the melanocortin 3/4 receptor agonist melanotan II (MTII) or vehicle in the lateral ventricle. In a separate experiment, proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and agouti-related protein (AgRP) mRNA levels were determined in the arcuate nucleus with in situ hybridization in rats subjected to the free-choice diets for 4 weeks. Results: Rats on the fcHFHS diet for 4 weeks show increased caloric intake and body weight gain compared to rats on the CHOW, fcHS and fcHF diet. Caloric intake and body weight gain was comparable between rats on the fcHF, fcHS, and CHOW diet. After 4 weeks diet, POMC and AgRP mRNA levels were not different between diet groups. MTII inhibited caloric intake to a larger extent in rats on the fcHF diet compared to rats on the CHOW, fcHFHS or fcHS diet. Moreover, the fat component was the most inhibited by MTII, and the sugar component the least. Conclusion: Rats on the fcHF diet show stronger food intake inhibition to the melanocortin receptor agonist MTII than rats on the CHOW, fcHS, and fcHFHS diet, which is independent of caloric intake and body weight gain. Our data point toward an important role for diet composition, particularly the dietary fat content, and not obesity in the sensitivity of the melanocortin

  3. Computational Analysis of the Hypothalamic Control of Food Intake

    PubMed Central

    Tabe-Bordbar, Shayan; Anastasio, Thomas J.

    2016-01-01

    Food-intake control is mediated by a heterogeneous network of different neural subtypes, distributed over various hypothalamic nuclei and other brain structures, in which each subtype can release more than one neurotransmitter or neurohormone. The complexity of the interactions of these subtypes poses a challenge to understanding their specific contributions to food-intake control, and apparent consistencies in the dataset can be contradicted by new findings. For example, the growing consensus that arcuate nucleus neurons expressing Agouti-related peptide (AgRP neurons) promote feeding, while those expressing pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC neurons) suppress feeding, is contradicted by findings that low AgRP neuron activity and high POMC neuron activity can be associated with high levels of food intake. Similarly, the growing consensus that GABAergic neurons in the lateral hypothalamus suppress feeding is contradicted by findings suggesting the opposite. Yet the complexity of the food-intake control network admits many different network behaviors. It is possible that anomalous associations between the responses of certain neural subtypes and feeding are actually consistent with known interactions, but their effect on feeding depends on the responses of the other neural subtypes in the network. We explored this possibility through computational analysis. We made a computer model of the interactions between the hypothalamic and other neural subtypes known to be involved in food-intake control, and optimized its parameters so that model behavior matched observed behavior over an extensive test battery. We then used specialized computational techniques to search the entire model state space, where each state represents a different configuration of the responses of the units (model neural subtypes) in the network. We found that the anomalous associations between the responses of certain hypothalamic neural subtypes and feeding are actually consistent with the known structure

  4. Increase of Long-Term ‘Diabesity’ Risk, Hyperphagia, and Altered Hypothalamic Neuropeptide Expression in Neonatally Overnourished ‘Small-For-Gestational-Age’ (SGA) Rats

    PubMed Central

    Schellong, Karen; Neumann, Uta; Rancourt, Rebecca C.; Plagemann, Andreas

    2013-01-01

    Background Epidemiological data have shown long-term health adversity in low birth weight subjects, especially concerning the metabolic syndrome and ‘diabesity’ risk. Alterations in adult food intake have been suggested to be causally involved. Responsible mechanisms remain unclear. Methods and Findings By rearing in normal (NL) vs. small litters (SL), small-for-gestational-age (SGA) rats were neonatally exposed to either normal (SGA-in-NL) or over-feeding (SGA-in-SL), and followed up into late adult age as compared to normally reared appropriate-for-gestational-age control rats (AGA-in-NL). SGA-in-SL rats displayed rapid neonatal weight gain within one week after birth, while SGA-in-NL growth caught up only at juvenile age (day 60), as compared to AGA-in-NL controls. In adulthood, an increase in lipids, leptin, insulin, insulin/glucose-ratio (all p<0.05), and hyperphagia under normal chow as well as high-energy/high-fat diet, modelling modern ‘westernized’ lifestyle, were observed only in SGA-in-SL as compared to both SGA-in-NL and AGA-in-NL rats (p<0.05). Lasercapture microdissection (LMD)-based neuropeptide expression analyses in single neuron pools of the arcuate hypothalamic nucleus (ARC) revealed a significant shift towards down-regulation of the anorexigenic melanocortinergic system (proopiomelanocortin, Pomc) in SGA-in-SL rats (p<0.05). Neuropeptide expression within the orexigenic system (neuropeptide Y (Npy), agouti-related-peptide (Agrp) and galanin (Gal)) was not significantly altered. In essence, the ‘orexigenic index’, proposed here as a neuroendocrine ‘net-indicator’, was increased in SGA-in-SL regarding Npy/Pomc expression (p<0.01), correlated to food intake (p<0.05). Conclusion Adult SGA rats developed increased ‘diabesity’ risk only if exposed to neonatal overfeeding. Hypothalamic malprogramming towards decreased anorexigenic activity was involved into the pathophysiology of this neonatally acquired adverse phenotype. Neonatal

  5. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor is required for axonal growth of selective groups of neurons in the arcuate nucleus

    PubMed Central

    Liao, Guey-Ying; Bouyer, Karine; Kamitakahara, Anna; Sahibzada, Niaz; Wang, Chien-Hua; Rutlin, Michael; Simerly, Richard B.; Xu, Baoji

    2015-01-01

    Objective Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) is a potent regulator of neuronal development, and the Bdnf gene produces two populations of transcripts with either a short or long 3′ untranslated region (3′ UTR). Deficiencies in BDNF signaling have been shown to cause severe obesity in humans; however, it remains unknown how BDNF signaling impacts the organization of neuronal circuits that control energy balance. Methods We examined the role of BDNF on survival, axonal projections, and synaptic inputs of neurons in the arcuate nucleus (ARH), a structure critical for the control of energy balance, using Bdnfklox/klox mice, which lack long 3′ UTR Bdnf mRNA and develop severe hyperphagic obesity. Results We found that a small fraction of neurons that express the receptor for BDNF, TrkB, also expressed proopiomelanocortin (POMC) or neuropeptide Y (NPY)/agouti-related protein (AgRP) in the ARH. Bdnfklox/klox mice had normal numbers of POMC, NPY, and TrkB neurons in the ARH; however, retrograde labeling revealed a drastic reduction in the number of ARH axons that project to the paraventricular hypothalamus (PVH) in these mice. In addition, fewer POMC and AgRP axons were found in the dorsomedial hypothalamic nucleus (DMH) and the lateral part of PVH, respectively, in Bdnfklox/klox mice. Using immunohistochemistry, we examined the impact of BDNF deficiency on inputs to ARH neurons. We found that excitatory inputs onto POMC and NPY neurons were increased and decreased, respectively, in Bdnfklox/klox mice, likely due to a compensatory response to marked hyperphagia displayed by the mutant mice. Conclusion This study shows that the majority of TrkB neurons in the ARH are distinct from known neuronal populations and that BDNF plays a critical role in directing projections from these neurons to the DMH and PVH. We propose that hyperphagic obesity due to BDNF deficiency is in part attributable to impaired axonal growth of TrkB-expressing ARH neurons. PMID:26042201

  6. Residual feed intake studies in Angus-sired cattle reveal a potential role for hypothalamic gene expression in regulating feed efficiency.

    PubMed

    Perkins, S D; Key, C N; Garrett, C F; Foradori, C D; Bratcher, C L; Kriese-Anderson, L A; Brandebourg, T D

    2014-02-01

    Mechanisms underlying variation in residual feed intake (RFI), a heritable feed efficiency measure, are poorly understood while the relationship between RFI and meat quality is uncertain. To address these issues, 2 divergent cohorts consisting of High (HRFI) and Low (LRFI) RFI individuals were created by assessing RFI in 48 Angus-sired steers during a 70 d feeding trial to identify steers with divergent RFI. The association of RFI with indices of meat quality and expression of genes within hypothalamic and adipose tissue was then determined in LRFI and HRFI steers. While on test, feed intake was recorded daily with BW and hip heights recorded at 14 d intervals. Ultrasound measurements of rib eye area (REA) and backfat (BF) were recorded initially and before harvest. Carcass and growth data were analyzed using a mixed model with RFI level (LRFI, HRFI) as the independent variable. The least-square means (lsmeans) for RFI were -1.25 and 1.51 for the LRFI and HRFI cohorts (P < .0001). Dry matter intake was higher for the HRFI individuals versus the LRFI steers (P < .0001) while on test BW gain was not different between the 2 groups (P < 0.73). There were no differences detected in marbling score (P < 0.93), BF (P < 0.61), REA (P < 0.15), yield grade (P < 0.85) or objective Hunter color measures between LRFI and HRFI steers indicating that there was no relationship between RFI and meat quality. Neuropeptide-Y (NPY), relaxin-3 (RLN3), melanocortin 4 receptor (MC4R), and GnRH mRNA expression was 64%, 59%, 58%, 86% lower (P < 0.05), respectively, while gonadotropin inhibiting hormone (GnIH) and pro-opiomelanocortin (POMC) mRNA expression was 198% and 350% higher (P < 0.01) in the arcuate nucleus of LRFI steers. Expression of agouti-related protein (AGRP), relaxin/insulin-like family peptide receptor 1 (RXFP1), and melanocortin 3 receptor mRNA was similar between LRFI and HRFI animals. Pituitary expression of FSHβ (P < 0.03) and LHβ (P < 0.01) was correlated to

  7. Engineering Agatoxin, a Cystine-Knot Peptide from Spider Venom, as a Molecular Probe for In Vivo Tumor Imaging

    PubMed Central

    Norton, Heidi K.; Cochran, Jennifer R.

    2013-01-01

    Background Cystine-knot miniproteins, also known as knottins, have shown great potential as molecular scaffolds for the development of targeted therapeutics and diagnostic agents. For this purpose, previous protein engineering efforts have focused on knottins based on the Ecballium elaterium trypsin inhibitor (EETI) from squash seeds, the Agouti-related protein (AgRP) neuropeptide from mammals, or the Kalata B1 uterotonic peptide from plants. Here, we demonstrate that Agatoxin (AgTx), an ion channel inhibitor found in spider venom, can be used as a molecular scaffold to engineer knottins that bind with high-affinity to a tumor-associated integrin receptor. Methodology/Principal Findings We used a rational loop-grafting approach to engineer AgTx variants that bound to αvβ3 integrin with affinities in the low nM range. We showed that a disulfide-constrained loop from AgRP, a structurally-related knottin, can be substituted into AgTx to confer its high affinity binding properties. In parallel, we identified amino acid mutations required for efficient in vitro folding of engineered integrin-binding AgTx variants. Molecular imaging was used to evaluate in vivo tumor targeting and biodistribution of an engineered AgTx knottin compared to integrin-binding knottins based on AgRP and EETI. Knottin peptides were chemically synthesized and conjugated to a near-infrared fluorescent dye. Integrin-binding AgTx, AgRP, and EETI knottins all generated high tumor imaging contrast in U87MG glioblastoma xenograft models. Interestingly, EETI-based knottins generated significantly lower non-specific kidney imaging signals compared to AgTx and AgRP-based knottins. Conclusions/Significance In this study, we demonstrate that AgTx, a knottin from spider venom, can be engineered to bind with high affinity to a tumor-associated receptor target. This work validates AgTx as a viable molecular scaffold for protein engineering, and further demonstrates the promise of using tumor

  8. Optogenetic Stimulation of Arcuate Nucleus Kiss1 Neurons Reveals a Steroid-Dependent Glutamatergic Input to POMC and AgRP Neurons in Male Mice.

    PubMed

    Nestor, Casey C; Qiu, Jian; Padilla, Stephanie L; Zhang, Chunguang; Bosch, Martha A; Fan, Wei; Aicher, Sue A; Palmiter, Richard D; Rønnekleiv, Oline K; Kelly, Martin J

    2016-06-01

    Kisspeptin (Kiss1) neurons are essential for reproduction, but their role in the control of energy balance and other homeostatic functions remains unclear. Proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and agouti-related peptide (AgRP) neurons, located in the arcuate nucleus (ARC) of the hypothalamus, integrate numerous excitatory and inhibitory inputs to ultimately regulate energy homeostasis. Given that POMC and AgRP neurons are contacted by Kiss1 neurons in the ARC (Kiss1(ARC)) and they express androgen receptors, Kiss1(ARC) neurons may mediate the orexigenic action of testosterone via POMC and/or AgRP neurons. Quantitative PCR analysis of pooled Kiss1(ARC) neurons revealed that mRNA levels for Kiss1 and vesicular glutamate transporter 2 were higher in castrated male mice compared with gonad-intact males. Single-cell RT-PCR analysis of yellow fluorescent protein (YFP) ARC neurons harvested from males injected with AAV1-EF1α-DIO-ChR2:YFP revealed that 100% and 88% expressed mRNAs for Kiss1 and vesicular glutamate transporter 2, respectively. Whole-cell, voltage-clamp recordings from nonfluorescent postsynaptic ARC neurons showed that low frequency photo-stimulation (0.5 Hz) of Kiss1-ChR2:YFP neurons elicited a fast glutamatergic inward current in POMC and AgRP neurons. Paired-pulse, photo-stimulation revealed paired-pulse depression, which is indicative of greater glutamate release, in the castrated male mice compared with gonad-intact male mice. Group I and group II metabotropic glutamate receptor agonists depolarized and hyperpolarized POMC and AgRP neurons, respectively, which was mimicked by high frequency photo-stimulation (20 Hz) of Kiss1(ARC) neurons. Therefore, POMC and AgRP neurons receive direct steroid- and frequency-dependent glutamatergic synaptic input from Kiss1(ARC) neurons in male mice, which may be a critical pathway for Kiss1 neurons to help coordinate energy homeostasis and reproduction. PMID:27093227

  9. Differential gene expression pattern in hypothalamus of chickens during fasting-induced metabolic reprogramming: functions of glucose and lipid metabolism in the feed intake of chickens.

    PubMed

    Fang, Xin-Ling; Zhu, Xiao-Tong; Chen, Sheng-Feng; Zhang, Zhi-Qi; Zeng, Qing-Jie; Deng, Lin; Peng, Jian-Long; Yu, Jian-Jian; Wang, Li-Na; Wang, Song-Bo; Gao, Ping; Jiang, Qing-Yan; Shu, Gang

    2014-11-01

    Fasting-induced hypothalamic metabolic reprogramming is involved in regulating energy homeostasis and appetite in mammals, but this phenomenon remains unclear in poultry. In this study, the expression patterns of a panel of genes related to neuropeptides, glucose, and lipid metabolism enzymes in the hypothalamus of chickens during fasting and refeeding were characterized by microarray analysis and quantitative PCR. Results showed that 48 h of fasting upregulated (P < 0.05) the mRNA expressions of orexigenic neuropeptide Y and agouti-related protein but downregulated (P < 0.05) that of anorexigenic neuropeptide pro-opiomelanocortin; growth hormone-releasing hormone; islet amyloid polypeptide; thyroid-stimulating hormone, β; and glycoprotein hormones, α polypeptide. After 48 h of fasting, the mRNA expression of fatty acid β-oxidation [peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor α (PPARα), carnitine palmitoyltransferase 1A, and forkhead box O1], energy sensor protein [sirtuin 1 (SIRT1) and forkhead box O1], and glycolysis inhibitor (pyruvate dehydrogenase kinase, isozyme 4) were enhanced, but that of fatty acid synthesis and transport associated genes (acetyl-CoA carboxylase α, fatty acid synthase, apolipoprotein A-I, endothelial lipase, and fatty acid binding protein 7) were suppressed. Liver and muscle also demonstrated similar expression patterns of genes related to glucose and lipid metabolism with hypothalamus, except for that of acetyl-CoA carboxylase α, acyl-CoA synthetase long-chain family member 4, and apolipoprotein A-I. The results of intracerebroventricular (ICV) injection experiments confirmed that α-lipoic acid (ALA, pyruvate dehydrogenase kinase, isozyme 4 inhibitor, 0.10 μmol) and NADH (SIRT1 inhibitor, 0.80 μmol) significantly suppressed the appetite of chickens, whereas 2-deoxy-d-glucose (glycolytic inhibitor, 0.12 to 1.20 μmol) and NAD(+) (SIRT1 activator, 0.08 to 0.80 μmol) increased feed intake in chickens. The orexigenic effect of NAD

  10. Alterations in the hypothalamic melanocortin pathway in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

    PubMed

    Vercruysse, Pauline; Sinniger, Jérôme; El Oussini, Hajer; Scekic-Zahirovic, Jelena; Dieterlé, Stéphane; Dengler, Reinhard; Meyer, Thomas; Zierz, Stephan; Kassubek, Jan; Fischer, Wilhelm; Dreyhaupt, Jens; Grehl, Torsten; Hermann, Andreas; Grosskreutz, Julian; Witting, Anke; Van Den Bosch, Ludo; Spreux-Varoquaux, Odile; Ludolph, Albert C; Dupuis, Luc

    2016-04-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, the most common adult-onset motor neuron disease, leads to death within 3 to 5 years after onset. Beyond progressive motor impairment, patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis suffer from major defects in energy metabolism, such as weight loss, which are well correlated with survival. Indeed, nutritional intervention targeting weight loss might improve survival of patients. However, the neural mechanisms underlying metabolic impairment in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis remain elusive, in particular due to the lack of longitudinal studies. Here we took advantage of samples collected during the clinical trial of pioglitazone (GERP-ALS), and characterized longitudinally energy metabolism of patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis in response to pioglitazone, a drug with well-characterized metabolic effects. As expected, pioglitazone decreased glycaemia, decreased liver enzymes and increased circulating adiponectin in patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, showing its efficacy in the periphery. However, pioglitazone did not increase body weight of patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis independently of bulbar involvement. As pioglitazone increases body weight through a direct inhibition of the hypothalamic melanocortin system, we studied hypothalamic neurons producing proopiomelanocortin (POMC) and the endogenous melanocortin inhibitor agouti-related peptide (AGRP), in mice expressing amyotrophic lateral sclerosis-linked mutant SOD1(G86R). We observed lowerPomcbut higherAgrpmRNA levels in the hypothalamus of presymptomatic SOD1(G86R) mice. Consistently, numbers of POMC-positive neurons were decreased, whereas AGRP fibre density was elevated in the hypothalamic arcuate nucleus of SOD1(G86R) mice. Consistent with a defect in the hypothalamic melanocortin system, food intake after short term fasting was increased in SOD1(G86R) mice. Importantly, these findings were replicated in two other amyotrophic lateral

  11. Effects of AgRP inhibition on energy balance and metabolism in rodent models.

    PubMed

    Dutia, Roxanne; Kim, Andrea J; Modes, Matthew; Rothlein, Robert; Shen, Jane M; Tian, Ye Edward; Ihbais, Jumana; Victory, Sam F; Valcarce, Carmen; Wardlaw, Sharon L

    2013-01-01

    Activation of brain melanocortin-4 receptors (MC4-R) by α-melanocyte-stimulating hormone (MSH) or inhibition by agouti-related protein (AgRP) regulates food intake and energy expenditure and can modulate neuroendocrine responses to changes in energy balance. To examine the effects of AgRP inhibition on energy balance, a small molecule, non-peptide compound, TTP2515, developed by TransTech Pharma, Inc., was studied in vitro and in rodent models in vivo. TTP2515 prevented AgRP from antagonizing α-MSH-induced increases in cAMP in HEK 293 cells overexpressing the human MC4-R. When administered to rats by oral gavage TTP2515 blocked icv AgRP-induced increases in food intake, weight gain and adiposity and suppression of T4 levels. In both diet-induced obese (DIO) and leptin-deficient mice, TTP2515 decreased food intake, weight gain, adiposity and respiratory quotient. TTP2515 potently suppressed food intake and weight gain in lean mice immediately after initiation of a high fat diet (HFD) but had no effect on these parameters in lean chow-fed mice. However, when tested in AgRP KO mice, TTP2515 also suppressed food intake and weight gain during HFD feeding. In several studies TTP2515 increased T4 but not T3 levels, however this was also observed in AgRP KO mice. TTP2515 also attenuated refeeding and weight gain after fasting, an effect not evident in AgRP KO mice when administered at moderate doses. This study shows that TTP2515 exerts many effects consistent with AgRP inhibition however experiments in AgRP KO mice indicate some off-target effects of this drug. TTP2515 was particularly effective during fasting and in mice with leptin deficiency, conditions in which AgRP is elevated, as well as during acute and chronic HFD feeding. Thus the usefulness of this drug in treating obesity deserves further exploration, to define the AgRP dependent and independent mechanisms by which TTP2515 exerts its effects on energy balance. PMID:23762342

  12. Regenerative effects of moxibustion on skeletal muscle in collagen-induced arthritic mice.

    PubMed

    Kim, Min-Jung; Namgung, Uk; Hong, Kwon-Eui

    2012-06-01

    In this study, we demonstrate that the direct application of moxibustion significantly enhances muscle regeneration in mice with collagen-induced arthritis (CIA). Twelve Dilute Brown Non-Agouti (DBA)/1 J male mice were randomly divided into the following groups: intact control (n=4), CIA (n=4), and CIA with moxibustion treatment (CIA+moxi, n=4). Mice in the CIA and CIA+moxi groups were immunized twice via intradermal injections of bovine type II collagen (C II) at 3-week intervals. After the second injection, moxibustion was applied to the mouse equivalent of the BL24 and ST36 acupoints with a moxa cone five times/day, every other day (except Sundays), for 3 weeks (a total of 9 treatments were administered). Phospho-Erk1/2, myostatin, TFG-B1, and IGF-1 were analyzed using ELISA. Protein levels in skeletal muscle tissues of the hind limb were analyzed by Western blotting and immunofluorescent staining. Treatment with direct moxibustion led to a marked improvement in CIA and atrophy of individual muscle fibers. Collagen protein signaling in the muscle of the CIA group was stronger than the control and CIA+moxi groups. Myostatin protein expression, as determined by Western blotting and immunofluorescent staining, were stronger in the CIA group compared with the control and CIA+moxi groups. Immunofluorescent staining confirmed that the CIA group had the strongest TGF-B1 protein signals among the three groups. However, in serum analysis the intact control group showed the strongest TGF-B1 protein signaling. RT-PCR analysis of the muscle tissues of the CIA+moxi group showed significant IGF-1 mRNA expression, and the most intense phospho-Erk1/2 protein signaling was detected in the muscle tissues of the CIA group via Western blotting and immunofluorescent staining. These results confirm that the direct administration of moxibustion at Shenshu (BL 23) and Zusanli (ST 36) influences muscle regeneration in the CIA mouse model. Our results suggest that the establishment of

  13. Imprinted genes and transpositions: epigenomic targets for low dose radiation effects. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Jirtle, Randy L.

    2012-10-11

    The overall hypothesis of this grant application is that low dose ionizing radiation (LDIR) elicits adaptive responses in part by causing heritable DNA methylation changes in the epigenome. This novel postulate was tested by determining if the level of DNA methylation at the Agouti viable yellow (A{sup vy}) metastable locus is altered, in a dose-dependent manner, by low dose radiation exposure (<10 cGy) during early gestation. This information is particularly important to ascertain given the increased use of CT scans in disease diagnosis, increased number of people predicted to live and work in space, and the present concern about radiological terrorism. We showed for the first time that LDIR significantly increased DNA methylation at the A{sup vy} locus in a sex-specific manner (p=0.004). Average DNA methylation was significantly increased in male offspring exposed to doses between 0.7 cGy and 7.6 cGy with maximum effects at 1.4 cGy and 3.0 cGy (p<0.01). Offspring coat color was concomitantly shifted towards pseudoagouti (p<0.01). Maternal dietary antioxidant supplementation mitigated both the DNA methylation changes and coat color shift in the irradiated offspring (p<0.05). Thus, LDIR exposure during gestation elicits epigenetic alterations that lead to positive adaptive phenotypic changes that are negated with antioxidants, indicating they are mediated in part by oxidative stress. These findings provide evidence that in the isogenic Avy mouse model epigenetic alterations resulting from LDIR play a role in radiation hormesis, bringing into question the assumption that every dose of radiation is harmful. Our findings not only have significant implications concerning the mechanism of hormesis, but they also emphasize the potential importance of this phenomenon in determining human risk at low radiation doses. Since the epigenetic regulation of genes varies markedly between species, the effect of LDIR on other epigenetically labile genes (e.g. imprinted genes) in

  14. Interleukin 6 Deficiency Modulates the Hypothalamic Expression of Energy Balance Regulating Peptides during Pregnancy in Mice

    PubMed Central

    Pazos, Patricia; Lima, Luis; Casanueva, Felipe F.; Diéguez, Carlos; García, María C.

    2013-01-01

    Pregnancy is associated with hyperphagia, increased adiposity and multiple neuroendocrine adaptations. Maternal adipose tissue secretes rising amounts of interleukin 6 (IL6), which acts peripherally modulating metabolic function and centrally increasing energy expenditure and reducing body fat. To explore the role of IL6 in the central mechanisms governing dam's energy homeostasis, early, mid and late pregnant (gestational days 7, 13 and 18) wild-type (WT) and Il6 knockout mice (Il6-KO) were compared with virgin controls at diestrus. Food intake, body weight and composition as well as indirect calorimetry measurements were performed in vivo. Anabolic and orexigenic peptides: neuropeptide Y (Npy) and agouti-related peptide (Agrp); and catabolic and anorectic neuropeptides: proopiomelanocortin (Pomc), corticotrophin and thyrotropin-releasing hormone (Crh and Trh) mRNA levels were determined by in situ hybridization. Real time-PCR and western-blot were used for additional tissue gene expression and protein studies. Non-pregnant Il6-KO mice were leaner than WT mice due to a decrease in fat but not in lean body mass. Pregnant Il6-KO mice had higher fat accretion despite similar body weight gain than WT controls. A decreased fat utilization in absence of Il6 might explain this effect, as shown by increased respiratory exchange ratio (RER) in virgin Il6-KO mice. Il6 mRNA levels were markedly enhanced in adipose tissue but reduced in hypothalamus of mid and late pregnant WT mice. Trh expression was also stimulated at gestational day 13 and lack of Il6 blunted this effect. Conversely, in late pregnant mice lessened hypothalamic Il6 receptor alpha (Il6ra), Pomc and Crh mRNA were observed. Il6 deficiency during this stage up-regulated Npy and Agrp expression, while restoring Pomc mRNA levels to virgin values. Together these results demonstrate that IL6/IL6Ra system modulates Npy/Agrp, Pomc and Trh expression during mouse pregnancy, supporting a role of IL6 in the central

  15. Rats with a truncated ghrelin receptor (GHSR) do not respond to ghrelin, and show reduced intake of palatable, high-calorie food.

    PubMed

    MacKay, Harry; Charbonneau, Valerie R; St-Onge, Veronique; Murray, Emma; Watts, Alexander; Wellman, Martin K; Abizaid, Alfonso

    2016-09-01

    Ghrelin, a peptide hormone produced by the stomach, is the endogenous ligand for the Growth Hormone Secretagogue Receptor (GHSR). Ghrelin acts on the GHSR to increase food intake, appetitive behaviors, and adiposity. Recently, a rat model with a null mutation to the GHSR gene (FHH-GHSR(m1/Mcwi)) was generated and used in behavioral studies, but the basic metabolic phenotype of this strain as well as that of the background strain (Fawn Hooded Hypertensive, FHH) has not been characterized in detail. Here we compared male FHH-GHSR(m1/Mcwi) rats with their wild-type littermates (FHH-WT) in a number of metabolic parameters. In the 24h of recovery following an acute overnight fast, FHH-GHSR(m1/Mcwi) rats consumed less food than FHH-WT animals, and relative to their body weights, adult FHH-GHSR(m1/Mcwi) rats consumed fewer calories when placed on a high-fat diet. Despite this, FHH-GHSR(m1/Mcwi) rats did not show a difference in diet-induced obesity or weight gain. Fasted FHH-GHSR(m1/Mcwi) rats exhibited increased Agouti-Related Peptide (AgRP) and Neuropeptide Y (NPY) expression in the Arcuate Nucleus (ARC), indicative of altered central regulation of feeding and energy balance. FHH-GHSR(m1/Mcwi) rats exhibited lower levels of home cage locomotor behavior over the entire light/dark cycle, and reduced levels of food anticipatory activity when placed on a restricted feeding schedule. Finally, FHH-GHSR(m1/Mcwi) rats consumed less of a palatable dessert (cookie dough) given after the completion of the scheduled meal. Altogether, our data show that rats lacking a functional GHSR tend to eat less than their wild-type counterparts in the face of acute fasts, chronic high-fat diet exposure, and exposure to a palatable dessert, despite not showing differences in body weight and glucose homeostasis that are characteristic of GHSR null mice. These data indicate that many, but not all responses to GHSR ablation are conserved between rats and mice. The FHH-GHSR(m1/Mcwi) rat thus

  16. Anorexia is Associated with Stress-Dependent Orexigenic Responses to Exogenous Neuropeptide Y.

    PubMed

    Yi, J; Delp, M S; Gilbert, E R; Siegel, P B; Cline, M A

    2016-05-01

    Chicken lines that have been divergently selected for either low (LWS) or high (HWS) body weight at 56 days of age for more than 57 generations have different feeding behaviours in response to a range of i.c.v. injected neurotransmitters. The LWS have different severities of anorexia, whereas the HWS become obese. Previously, we demonstrated that LWS chicks did not respond, whereas HWS chicks increased food intake, after central injection of neuropeptide Y (NPY). The present study aimed to determine the molecular mechanisms underlying the loss of orexigenic function of NPY in LWS. Chicks were divided into four groups: stressed LWS and HWS on day of hatch, and control LWS and HWS. The stressor was a combination of food deprivation and cold exposure. On day 5 post-hatch, each chick received an i.c.v. injection of vehicle or 0.2 nmol of NPY. Only the LWS stressed group did not increase food intake in response to i.c.v. NPY. Hypothalamic mRNA abundance of appetite-associated factors was measured at 1 h post-injection. Interactions of genetic line, stress and NPY treatment were observed for the mRNA abundance of agouti-related peptide (AgRP) and synaptotagmin 1 (SYT1). Intracerebroventricular injection of NPY decreased and increased AgRP and SYT1 mRNA, respectively, in the stressed LWS and increased AgRP mRNA in stressed HWS chicks. Stress was associated with increased NPY, orexin receptor 2, corticotrophin-releasing factor receptor 1, melanocortin receptor 3 (MC3R) and growth hormone secretagogue receptor expression. In conclusion, the loss of responsiveness to exogenous NPY in stressed LWS chicks may be a result of the decreased and increased hypothalamic expression of AgRP and MC3R, respectively. This may induce an intensification of anorexigenic melanocortin signalling pathways in LWS chicks that block the orexigenic effect of exogenous NPY. These results provide insights onto the anorexic condition across species, and especially for forms of inducible anorexia

  17. Effects of Pax3 modifier genes on craniofacial morphology, pigmentation, and viability: A murine model of Waardenburg syndrome variation

    SciTech Connect

    Asher, J.H. Jr.; Harrison, R.W.; Morell, R.; Carey, M.L.

    1996-06-15

    Waardenburg syndrome type 1 is caused by mutations in PAX3. Over 50 human PAX3 mutations that lead to hearing, craniofacial, limb, and pigmentation anomalies have been identified. A PAX3 mutant allele, segregating in a family, can show reduced penetrance and variable expressivity that cannot be explained by the nature of the mutation alone. The Mus musculus Pax3 mutation Sp{sup d} (Splotch-delayed, Pax3{sup Sd}p), coisogenic on the C57BL/6J (B{sub 6}) genetic background, produces in heterozygotes a white belly spot with 100% penetrance and very few other anomalies. By contrast, many Sp{sup d}/+ BC{sub 1} progeny [F{sub 1} {female} Sp{sup d}/+ ({female} Sp{sup d}/+ B{sub 6} x {male} +/+ Mus spretus) x {male} +/+ B{sub 6}] exhibit highly variable craniofacial and pigmentary anomalies. Of the BC{sub 1} Sp{sup d}/+ progeny, 23.9% are estimated to be nonviable, and 32.1% are nonpenetrant for the white belly spot. The penetrance and expressivity of the Sp{sup d}/+ genotype are controlled in part by the genetic background and the sex of the individual. A minimum of two genes interact with Sp{sup d} to influence the craniofacial features of these mice. One of these genes may be either X-linked or sex-influenced, while the other is autosomal. The A-locus (Agouti) or a gene closely linked to A also plays a role in determining craniofacial features. At least one additional gene, possibly the A-locus or a gene linked to A, interacts with Sp{sup d} and determines the presence and size of the white belly spot. The viability of BC{sub 1} mice is influenced by at least three factors: Sp{sup d}, A-locus alleles or a gene closely linked to the A-locus, and the sex of the mouse. The BC{sub 1} mice provide an opportunity to identify genes that interact with and modify the expression of Pax3 and serve as a model to identify the genes that modify the expression of human PAX3 mutations. 65 refs., 3 figs., 6 tabs.

  18. A composite six bp in-frame deletion in the melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R) gene is associated with the Japanese brindling coat colour in rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus)

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background In the domestic rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus), classical genetic studies have identified five alleles at the Extension locus: ED (dominant black), ES (steel, weaker version of ED), E (wild type, normal extension of black), eJ(Japanese brindling, mosaic distribution of black and yellow) and e (non-extension of black, yellow/red with white belly). Sequencing almost the complete coding sequence (CDS) of the rabbit MC1R gene, we recently identified two in-frame deletions associated with dominant black (c.280_285del6; alleles ED or ES) and recessive red (c.304_333del30; allele e) coat colours. It remained to characterize the eJallele whose phenotypic effect is similar to the Orange and Sex-linked yellow loci of cat and Syrian hamster. Results We sequenced the whole CDS in 25 rabbits of different coat colours including 10 Japanese and 10 Rhinelander (tricolour) rabbits and identified another 6 bp-in frame deletion flanked by a G > A transition in 5' (c.[124G>A;125_130del6]) that was present in all animals with Japanese brindling coat colour and pattern. These mutations eliminate two amino acids in the first transmembrane domain and, in addition, cause an amino acid substitution at position 44 of the wild type sequence. Genotyping 371 rabbits of 31 breeds with different coat colour this allele (eJ) was present in homozygous state in Japanese, Rhinelander and Dutch tricolour rabbits only (except one albino rabbit). Rabbits with eJ/eJ genotype were non fixed at the non-agouti mutation we previously identified in the ASIP gene. Segregation in F1 and F2 families confirmed the order of dominance already determined by classical genetic experiments with a possible dose effect evident comparing eJ/eJ and eJ/e animals. MC1R mRNA was expressed in black hair skin regions only. Conclusions The c.[124A;125_130del6] allele may be responsible for a MC1R variant determining eumelanin production in the black areas. However, the mechanism determining the presence of both red

  19. Transcriptional Evidence for the Role of Chronic Venlafaxine Treatment in Neurotrophic Signaling and Neuroplasticity Including also Glutatmatergic- and Insulin-Mediated Neuronal Processes

    PubMed Central

    Tamási, Viola; Petschner, Peter; Adori, Csaba; Kirilly, Eszter; Ando, Romeo D.; Tothfalusi, Laszlo; Juhasz, Gabriella; Bagdy, Gyorgy

    2014-01-01

    Objectives Venlafaxine (VLX), a serotonine-noradrenaline reuptake inhibitor, is one of the most commonly used antidepressant drugs in clinical practice for the treatment of major depressive disorder (MDD). Despite being more potent than its predecessors, similarly to them, the therapeutical effect of VLX is visible only 3–4 weeks after the beginning of treatment. Furthermore, recent papers show that antidepressants, including also VLX, enhance the motor recovery after stroke even in non depressed persons. In the present, transcriptomic-based study we looked for changes in gene expressions after a long-term VLX administration. Methods Osmotic minipumps were implanted subcutaneously into Dark Agouti rats providing a continuous (40 mg/kg/day) VLX delivery for three weeks. Frontal regions of the cerebral cortex were isolated and analyzed using Illumina bead arrays to detect genes showing significant chances in expression. Gene set enrichment analysis was performed to identify specific regulatory networks significantly affected by long term VLX treatment. Results Chronic VLX administration may have an effect on neurotransmitter release via the regulation of genes involved in vesicular exocytosis and receptor endocytosis (such as Kif proteins, Myo5a, Sv2b, Syn2 or Synj2). Simultaneously, VLX activated the expression of genes involved in neurotrophic signaling (Ntrk2, Ntrk3), glutamatergic transmission (Gria3, Grin2b and Grin2a), neuroplasticity (Camk2g/b, Cd47), synaptogenesis (Epha5a, Gad2) and cognitive processes (Clstn2). Interestingly, VLX increased the expression of genes involved in mitochondrial antioxidant activity (Bcl2 and Prdx1). Additionally, VLX administration also modulated genes related to insulin signaling pathway (Negr1, Ppp3r1, Slc2a4 and Enpp1), a mechanism that has recently been linked to neuroprotection, learning and memory. Conclusions Our results strongly suggest that chronic VLX treatment improves functional reorganization and brain plasticity

  20. Effect of residual feed intake on hypothalamic gene expression and meat quality in Angus-sired cattle grown during the hot season.

    PubMed

    Perkins, S D; Key, C N; Marvin, M N; Garrett, C F; Foradori, C D; Bratcher, C L; Kriese-Anderson, L A; Brandebourg, T D

    2014-04-01

    The relationship between heat stress, meat quality, and residual feed intake (RFI) is unknown in growing steers. To address this issue, high RFI (HRFI) and low RFI (LRFI) individuals were compared by assessing RFI in 48 Angus-sired steers during a 70-d feeding trial conducted during July through September to identify steers with calculated RFI at least 2 SD apart. The association of RFI with indices of meat quality and expression of genes within hypothalamic and adipose tissue was then determined in LRFI and HRFI steers. While on test, feed intake was recorded daily with BW and hip heights recorded every 14 d. Ultrasound measurements of rib eye area (REA) and backfat (BF) were recorded initially and before harvest. Carcass and growth data were analyzed using a mixed model with RFI level (LRFI and HRFI) as the independent variable. The least square means for RFI were -1.2 and 0.99 kg DMI/d, respectively, for the LRFI and HRFI cohorts (P < 0.0001). Dry matter intake was higher for the HRFI individuals versus the LRFI steers (P < 0.0001) while on-test gain was not different (P < 0.95). Marbling score was greater in LRFI than HRFI steers (P < 0.05). However, there were no differences in REA (P < 0.53), BF (P < 0.65), yield grade (P < 0.24), or objective Hunter color measures between LRFI and HRFI steers indicating there was no consistent relationship between RFI and indices of meat quality. Hypothalamic neuropeptide Y (NPY), agouti related protein (AGRP), relaxin-3 (RLN3), melanocortin 3 receptor, and relaxin/insulin-like family peptide receptor 1 (RXFP1) mRNA were expressed 280, 185, 202, 183, and 163% greater, respectively (P < 0.01), while proopiomelanocortin (POMC) mRNA was expressed 42% lower in LRFI than HRFI animals (P < 0.05). Hypothalamic GnRH mRNA expression was 67% lower while gonadotropin inhibiting hormone (GnIH) mRNA was 209% higher in LRFI than HRFI animals (P < 0.01). Pituitary expression of FSHβ and LHβ correlated to hypothalamic GnRH levels (P < 0

  1. Age-associated changes in rat immune system: lessons learned from experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis.

    PubMed

    Djikić, Jasmina; Nacka-Aleksić, Mirjana; Pilipović, Ivan; Stojić-Vukanić, Zorica; Bufan, Biljana; Kosec, Duško; Dimitrijević, Mirjana; Leposavić, Gordana

    2014-10-01

    Aging is associated with the decline in immune response to infectious agents and tumors and increasing risk of autoimmunity, but the incidence of autoimmune diseases does not increase in the elderly. To elucidate the cellular and molecular mechanisms influencing clinical expression of autoimmunity in aged animals, the phenotypic and functional characteristics of mononuclear cells isolated from the spinal cords of 3-month-old (young) and 26-month-old (aged) Dark Agouti rats immunized to induce experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE) - the model of multiple sclerosis, the most common autoimmune disease of the central nervous system, were examined. Aged rats were less susceptible to EAE induction, and the neurological and histological picture was milder in those rats which developed the clinically manifested disease. At the peak of the disease, several times fewer mononuclear cells and T lymphocytes were isolated from the spinal cords of aged rats compared with the young ones. The frequency of CD4+ cells among TCRαβ+ lymphocytes, as well as that of reactivated CD134(OX40)+ cells within its CD4+ T-lymphocyte subpopulation, was less in spinal cords of aged compared with young rats. Additionally, CD134 surface density on CD4+ lymphocytes was decreased in the spinal cord of aged rats. The changes in CD134 expression most likely reflected in part age-related intrinsic changes in CD4+ lymphocytes as the expression of this molecule was also impaired on in vitro stimulated naïve CD4+ splenocytes from aged rats compared with young animals. In addition, greater frequency of CD8+ lymphocytes with regulatory phenotypes could also contribute to impaired CD4+ cell reactivation in aged rats. The increased apoptosis of CD4+ cells from aged rats was consistent with their impaired reactivation and it was accompanied by the greater frequency of CD4+CD11b+CD45(int/high) cells, which are supposed to be actively engaged in apoptotic cell phagocytosis and to have immunoregulatory

  2. A closer look at evolution: Variants (SNPs) of genes involved in skin pigmentation, including EXOC2, TYR, TYRP1, and DCT, are associated with 25(OH)D serum concentration.

    PubMed

    Saternus, Roman; Pilz, Stefan; Gräber, Stefan; Kleber, Marcus; März, Winfried; Vogt, Thomas; Reichrath, Jörg

    2015-01-01

    Vitamin D deficiency is common in the Caucasian population and is associated with increased incidence and unfavorable outcome of many diseases, including various types of cancer, infectious, cardiovascular, and autoimmune diseases. Individual factors that predispose for a person's vitamin D status, such as skin type, have been identified, but limited data exist on genetic determinants of serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25[OH]D) concentration. We have tested the hypothesis that variants of genes (single nucleotide polymorphisms [SNPs]) involved in skin pigmentation are predictive of serum 25(OH)D levels. Serum 25(OH)D and SNPs (n = 960) related to genes with relevance for skin pigmentation (tyrosinase [TYR], TYR-related protein 1 [TYRP1], dopachrome tautomerase [DCT], oculocutaneous albinism II [OCA2], two pore segment channel 2 [TPCN2], solute carrier family 24 A4 [SLC24A4], solute carrier family 45 A2 [SLC45A2], agouti signalling peptide [ASIP], cyclic AMP-dependent transcription factor [ATF1], microphthalmia-associated transcription factor [MITF], proopiomelanocortin [POMC], cAMP-dependent protein kinase catalytic subunit beta [PRKACB], cAMP-dependent protein kinase catalytic subunit gamma [PRKACG], cAMP-dependent protein kinase type I-alpha regulatory subunit [PRKAR1A], cAMP-dependent protein kinase type II-alpha regulatory subunit [PRKAR2A], cAMP-dependent protein kinase type II-beta regulatory subunit [PRKAR2B], tubulin beta-3 chain/melanocortin receptor 1 [TUBB3/MC1R], Cadherin-1 [CDH1], catenin beta 1 [CTNNB1], Endothelin 1 [EDN1], endothelin 3 [EDN3], endothelin receptor type B [EDNRB], fibroblast growth factor 2 [FGF2], KIT, KIT ligand [KITLG], nerve growth factor [NGF], interferon regulatory factor 4 [IRF4], exocyst complex component 2 [EXOC2], and tumor protein 53 [TP53]) were analyzed in a cohort of participants of the Ludwigshafen Risk and Cardiovascular Health Study (n = 2970). A total of 46 SNPs were associated (P <.05) with lower or higher serum 25(OH

  3. Long-term neuronal damage and recovery after a single dose of MDMA: expression and distribution of serotonin transporter in the rat brain.

    PubMed

    Kirilly, Eszter

    2010-09-01

    "Ecstasy", 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), an amphetamine analogue is one of the most widely used recreational drugs. In spite of the fact that neurotoxic effects of MDMA has been found in several species from rodents to non-human primates, and results increasingly point to damage also in human MDMA users, data about the sensitivity of different brain areas and the recovery after neuronal damage are scarce. Serotonin transporter (5-HTT) mRNA in the raphe nuclei also has not been examined. Humans with genetic predisposition for the slow metabolism of MDMA, the so-called "poor metabolizers" of debrisoquin are at higher risk. Five- 9% of the Caucasian population is considered to carry this phenotype. These studies were carried out in Dark Agouti rats, a special strain that show decreased microsomal CYP2D1 isoenzyme activity, and thus may serve as a model of vulnerable human users. These works were designed to characterize MDMA-induced damage and recovery of the serotonergic system including sleep and morphological changes within 180 days. In our experiments we investigated the 5-HTT mRNA expression in the brainstem and medullary raphe nuclei, 5-HTT immunoreactive (IR) fibre densities in several brain areas, and 16 functional measures of sleep in response to a single dose of +/- MDMA (15mg\\kg). Furthermore, behavioural experiments were performed 21 days after MDMA treatment. We found similar changes in 5-HTT mRNA expression in the examined raphe nuclei, namely transient increases 7 days after MDMA treatment followed by transient decreases at 21 days. Significant (20-40%), widespread reductions in 5-HTT-IR fibre density were detected in most brain areas at 7 and 21 days after MDMA administration. All cortical, but only some brainstem areas were damaged. Parallel to the neuronal damage we observed significant reductions in rapid eye movement (REM) sleep latency, increased fragmentation of sleep and increases in delta power spectra in non-REM sleep. At 180 days