Excessive hepatic glucose production (HGP) contributes significantly to the hyperglycemia of type 2 diabetes; however, the molecular mechanism underlying this dysregulation remains poorly understood. Here, we show that fasting temporally increases the expression of H19 long noncoding RNA (lncRNA) in nondiabetic mouse liver, whereas its level is chronically elevated in diet-induced diabetic mice, consistent with the previously reported chronic hepatic H19 increase in diabetic patients. Importantly, liver-specific H19 overexpression promotes HGP, hyperglycemia, and insulin resistance, while H19 depletion enhances insulin-dependent suppression of HGP. Using genome-wide methylation and transcriptome analyses, we demonstrate that H19 knockdown in hepatic cells alters promoter methylation and expression of Hnf4a, a master gluconeogenic transcription factor, and that this regulation is recapitulated in vivo. Our findings offer a mechanistic explanation of lncRNA H19’s role in the pathogenesis of diabetic hyperglycemia and suggest that targeting hepatic H19 may hold the potential of new treatment for this disease.
Na Zhang, Tingting Geng, Zhangsheng Wang, Ruling Zhang, Tiefeng Cao, Joao Paulo Camporez, Shi-Ying Cai, Ya Liu, Luisa Dandolo, Gerald I. Shulman, Gordon G. Carmichael, Hugh S. Taylor, Yingqun Huang
Cystic fibrosis–related (CF-related) diabetes (CFRD) is an increasingly common and devastating comorbidity of CF, affecting approximately 35% of adults with CF. However, the underlying causes of CFRD are unclear. Here, we examined cystic fibrosis transmembrane conductance regulator (CFTR) islet expression and whether the CFTR participates in islet endocrine cell function using murine models of β cell CFTR deletion and normal and CF human pancreas and islets. Specific deletion of CFTR from murine β cells did not affect β cell function. In human islets, CFTR mRNA was minimally expressed, and CFTR protein and electrical activity were not detected. Isolated CF/CFRD islets demonstrated appropriate insulin and glucagon secretion, with few changes in key islet-regulatory transcripts. Furthermore, approximately 65% of β cell area was lost in CF donors, compounded by pancreatic remodeling and immune infiltration of the islet. These results indicate that CFRD is caused by β cell loss and intraislet inflammation in the setting of a complex pleiotropic disease and not by intrinsic islet dysfunction from CFTR mutation.
Nathaniel J. Hart, Radhika Aramandla, Gregory Poffenberger, Cody Fayolle, Ariel H. Thames, Austin Bautista, Aliya F. Spigelman, Jenny Aurielle B. Babon, Megan E. DeNicola, Prasanna K. Dadi, William S. Bush, Appakalai N. Balamurugan, Marcela Brissova, Chunhua Dai, Nripesh Prasad, Rita Bottino, David A. Jacobson, Mitchell L. Drumm, Sally C. Kent, Patrick E. MacDonald, Alvin C. Powers
Mutations in the gene encoding the protein kinase A (PKA) catalytic subunit α have been found to be responsible for cortisol-producing adenomas (CPAs). In this study, we identified by whole-exome sequencing the somatic mutation p.S54L in the PRKACB gene, encoding the catalytic subunit β (Cβ) of PKA, in a CPA from a patient with severe Cushing syndrome. Bioluminescence resonance energy transfer and surface plasmon resonance assays revealed that the mutation hampers formation of type I holoenzymes and that these holoenzymes were highly sensitive to cAMP. PKA activity, measured both in cell lysates and with recombinant proteins, based on phosphorylation of a synthetic substrate, was higher under basal conditions for the mutant enzyme compared with the WT, while maximal activity was lower. These data suggest that at baseline the PRKACB p.S54L mutant drove the adenoma cells to higher cAMP signaling activity, probably contributing to their autonomous growth. Although the role of PRKACB in tumorigenesis has been suggested, we demonstrated for the first time to our knowledge that a PRKACB mutation can lead to an adrenal tumor. Moreover, this observation describes another mechanism of PKA pathway activation in CPAs and highlights the particular role of residue Ser54 for the function of PKA.
Stéphanie Espiard, Matthias J. Knape, Kerstin Bathon, Guillaume Assié, Marthe Rizk-Rabin, Simon Faillot, Windy Luscap-Rondof, Daniel Abid, Laurence Guignat, Davide Calebiro, Friedrich W. Herberg, Constantine A. Stratakis, Jérôme Bertherat
BACKGROUND. Sodium glucose cotransporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibitors are the most recently approved class of drugs for type 2 diabetes and provide both glycemic efficacy and cardiovascular risk reduction. A number of safety issues have been identified, including treatment-emergent bone fractures. To understand the overall clinical profile, these safety issues must be balanced against an attractive efficacy profile. Our study was designed to investigate pathophysiological mechanisms mediating treatment-emergent adverse effects on bone health. METHODS. We conducted a single-blind randomized crossover study in hospitalized healthy adults (n = 25) receiving either canagliflozin (300 mg/d) or placebo for 5 days. The primary end-point was the drug-induced change in AUC for plasma intact fibroblast growth factor 23 (FGF23) immunoactivity between 24 and 72 hours. RESULTS. Canagliflozin administration increased placebo-subtracted mean levels of serum phosphorus (+16%), plasma FGF23 (+20%), and plasma parathyroid hormone (PTH) (+25%), while decreasing the level of 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D (–10%). There was substantial interindividual variation in the magnitude of each of these pharmacodynamic responses. The increase in plasma FGF23 was correlated with the increase in serum phosphorus, and the decrease in plasma 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D was correlated with the increase in plasma FGF23. CONCLUSIONS. Canagliflozin induced a prompt increase in serum phosphorus, which triggers downstream changes in FGF23, 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D, and PTH, with potential to exert adverse effects on bone health. These pharmacodynamic data provide a foundation for future research to elucidate pathophysiological mechanisms of adverse effects on bone health, with the objective of devising therapeutic strategies to mitigate the drug-associated fracture risk. TRIAL REGISTRATION. ClinicalTrial.gov (NCT02404870). FUNDING. Supported by the Intramural Program of NIDDK.
Jenny E. Blau, Viviana Bauman, Ellen M. Conway, Paolo Piaggi, Mary F. Walter, Elizabeth C. Wright, Shanna Bernstein, Amber B. Courville, Michael T. Collins, Kristina I. Rother, Simeon I. Taylor
BACKGROUND. The effect of gene expression data on diagnosis remains limited. Here, we show how diagnosis and classification of growth hormone deficiency (GHD) can be achieved from a single blood sample using a combination of transcriptomics and random forest analysis. METHODS. Prepubertal treatment-naive children with GHD (n = 98) were enrolled from the PREDICT study, and controls (n = 26) were acquired from online data sets. Whole blood gene expression was correlated with peak growth hormone (GH) using rank regression and a random forest algorithm tested for prediction of the presence of GHD and in classification of GHD as severe (peak GH <4 μg/l) and nonsevere (peak ≥4 μg/l). Performance was assessed using area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC-ROC). RESULTS. Rank regression identified 347 probe sets in which gene expression correlated with peak GH concentrations (r = ± 0.28, P < 0.01). These 347 probe sets yielded an AUC-ROC of 0.95 for prediction of GHD status versus controls and an AUC-ROC of 0.93 for prediction of GHD severity. CONCLUSION. This study demonstrates highly accurate diagnosis and disease classification for GHD using a combination of transcriptomics and random forest analysis. TRIAL REGISTRATION. NCT00256126 and NCT00699855. FUNDING. Merck and the National Institute for Health Research (CL-2012-06-005).
Philip G. Murray, Adam Stevens, Chiara De Leonibus, Ekaterina Koledova, Pierre Chatelain, Peter E. Clayton
Clinical and experimental data indicate a beneficial effect of estrogens on energy and glucose homeostasis associated with improved insulin sensitivity and positive effects on insulin secretion. The aim of the study was to investigate the impact of estrogens on proglucagon-producing cells, pancreatic α cells, and enteroendocrine L cells. The consequences of sexual hormone deprivation were evaluated in ovariectomized mice (ovx). Ovx mice exhibited impaired glucose tolerance during oral glucose tolerance tests (OGTT), which was associated with decreased GLP-1 intestinal and pancreatic secretion and content, an effect that was reversed by estradiol (E2) treatment. Indeed, E2 increased oral glucose–induced GLP-1 secretion in vivo and GLP-1 secretion from primary culture of mouse and human α cells through the activation of all 3 estrogen receptors (ERs), whereas E2-induced GLP-1 secretion from mouse and human intestinal explants occurred only by ERβ activation. Underlying the implication of ERβ, its selective agonist WAY20070 was able to restore glucose tolerance in ovx mice at least partly through plasma GLP-1 increase. We conclude that E2 directly controls both α- and L cells to increase GLP-1 secretion, in addition to its effects on insulin and glucagon secretion, highlighting the potential beneficial role of the estrogenic pathway and, more particularly, of ERβ agonists to prevent type 2 diabetes.
Sandra Handgraaf, Rodolphe Dusaulcy, Florian Visentin, Jacques Philippe, Yvan Gosmain
Androgen excess is a hallmark of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), a prevalent yet poorly understood endocrine disorder. Evidence from women and preclinical animal models suggests that elevated perinatal androgens can elicit PCOS onset in adulthood, implying androgen actions in both PCOS ontogeny and adult pathophysiology. Prenatally androgenized (PNA) mice exhibit a robust increase of progesterone-sensitive GABAergic inputs to gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) neurons implicated in the pathogenesis of PCOS. It is unclear when altered GABAergic wiring develops in the brain, and whether these central abnormalities are dependent upon adult androgen excess. Using GnRH-GFP–transgenic mice, we determined that increased GABA input to GnRH neurons occurs prior to androgen excess and the manifestation of reproductive impairments in PNA mice. These data suggest that brain circuit abnormalities precede the postpubertal development of PCOS traits. Despite the apparent developmental programming of circuit abnormalities, long-term blockade of androgen receptor signaling from early adulthood rescued normal GABAergic wiring onto GnRH neurons, improved ovarian morphology, and restored reproductive cycles in PNA mice. Therefore, androgen excess maintains changes in female brain wiring linked to PCOS features and the blockade of androgen receptor signaling reverses both the central and peripheral PNA-induced PCOS phenotype.
Mauro S.B. Silva, Melanie Prescott, Rebecca E. Campbell
Autoimmune-mediated destruction of pancreatic islet β cells results in type 1 diabetes (T1D). Serum islet autoantibodies usually develop in genetically susceptible individuals in early childhood before T1D onset, with multiple islet autoantibodies predicting diabetes development. However, most at-risk children remain islet-antibody negative, and no test currently identifies those likely to seroconvert. We sought a genomic signature predicting seroconversion risk by integrating longitudinal peripheral blood gene expression profiles collected in high-risk children included in the BABYDIET and DIPP cohorts, of whom 50 seroconverted. Subjects were followed for 10 years to determine time of seroconversion. Any cohort effect and the time of seroconversion were corrected to uncover genes differentially expressed (DE) in seroconverting children. Gene expression signatures associated with seroconversion were evident during the first year of life, with 67 DE genes identified in seroconverting children relative to those remaining antibody negative. These genes contribute to T cell–, DC-, and B cell–related immune responses. Near-birth expression of ADCY9, PTCH1, MEX3B, IL15RA, ZNF714, TENM1, and PLEKHA5, along with HLA risk score predicted seroconversion (AUC 0.85). The ubiquitin-proteasome pathway linked DE genes and T1D susceptibility genes. Therefore, a gene expression signature in infancy predicts risk of seroconversion. Ubiquitination may play a mechanistic role in diabetes progression.
Ahmed M. Mehdi, Emma E. Hamilton-Williams, Alexandre Cristino, Anette Ziegler, Ezio Bonifacio, Kim-Anh Le Cao, Mark Harris, Ranjeny Thomas
Neuregulins (NRGs) are emerging as an important family of signaling ligands that regulate glucose and lipid homeostasis. NRG1 lowers blood glucose levels in obese mice, whereas the brown fat–enriched secreted factor NRG4 protects mice from high-fat diet–induced insulin resistance and hepatic steatosis. However, the therapeutic potential of NRGs remains elusive, given the poor plasma half-life of the native ligands. Here, we engineered a fusion protein using human NRG1 and the Fc domain of human IgG1 (NRG1-Fc) that exhibited extended half-life in circulation and improved potency in receptor signaling. We evaluated its efficacy in improving metabolic parameters and dissected the mechanisms of action. NRG1-Fc treatment triggered potent AKT activation in the liver, lowered blood glucose, improved insulin sensitivity, and suppressed food intake in obese mice. NRG1-Fc acted as a potent secretagogue for the metabolic hormone FGF21; however, the latter was largely dispensable for its metabolic effects. NRG1-Fc directly targeted the hypothalamic POMC neurons to promote membrane depolarization and increase firing rate. Together, NRG1-Fc exhibits improved pharmacokinetic properties and exerts metabolic benefits through dual inhibition of hepatic gluconeogenesis and caloric intake.
Peng Zhang, Henry Kuang, Yanlin He, Sharon O. Idiga, Siming Li, Zhimin Chen, Zhao Yang, Xing Cai, Kezhong Zhang, Matthew J. Potthoff, Yong Xu, Jiandie D. Lin
Progressive chronic kidney diseases (CKDs) are on the rise worldwide. However, the sequence of events resulting in CKD progression remain poorly understood. Animal models of CKD exploring these issues are confounded by systemic toxicities or surgical interventions to acutely induce kidney injury. Here we report the generation of a CKD mouse model through the inducible podocyte-specific ablation of an essential endogenous molecule, the chromatin structure regulator CCCTC-binding factor (CTCF), which leads to rapid podocyte loss (iCTCFpod–/–). As a consequence, iCTCFpod–/– mice develop severe progressive albuminuria, hyperlipidemia, hypoalbuminemia, and impairment of renal function, and die within 8–10 weeks. CKD progression in iCTCFpod–/– mice leads to high serum phosphate and elevations in fibroblast growth factor 23 (FGF23) and parathyroid hormone that rapidly cause bone mineralization defects, increased bone resorption, and bone loss. Dissection of the timeline leading to glomerular pathology in this CKD model led to the surprising observation that podocyte ablation and the resulting glomerular filter destruction is sufficient to drive progressive CKD and osteodystrophy in the absence of interstitial fibrosis. This work introduces an animal model with significant advantages for the study of CKD progression, and it highlights the need for podocyte-protective strategies for future kidney therapeutics.
Marta Christov, Abbe R. Clark, Braden Corbin, Samy Hakroush, Eugene P. Rhee, Hiroaki Saito, Dan Brooks, Eric Hesse, Mary Bouxsein, Niels Galjart, Ji Yong Jung, Peter Mundel, Harald Jüppner, Astrid Weins, Anna Greka
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