BBA - Molecular and Cell Biology of Lipids (v.1791, #2)

Obesity is currently a worldwide epidemic and public health burden that increases the risk for developing insulin resistance and several chronic diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. The multifactorial causes of obesity include several genetic, dietary and lifestyle variables that together result in an imbalance between energy intake and energy expenditure. Dietary approaches to limit fat intake are commonly prescribed to achieve the hypocaloric conditions necessary for weight loss. But dietary fat restriction is often accompanied by increased carbohydrate intake, which can dramatically increase endogenous fatty acid synthesis depending upon carbohydrate composition. Since both dietary and endogenously synthesized fatty acids contribute to the whole-body fatty acid pool, obesity can therefore result from excessive fat or carbohydrate consumption. Stearoyl-Coenzyme A desaturase-1 (SCD1) is a delta-9 fatty acid desaturase that converts saturated fatty acids into monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) and this activity is elevated by dietary carbohydrate. Mice lacking Scd1 are protected from obesity and insulin resistance and are characterized by decreased fatty acid synthesis and increased fatty acid oxidation. In this review, we address the association of high-carbohydrate diets with increased SCD activity and summarize the current literature on the subject of SCD1 and body weight regulation.
Keywords: Stearoyl-CoA desaturase; SCD1; Obesity; Insulin; Carbohydrate; Lipogenesis;

Expression of phospholipases A2 in primary human lung macrophages by Giorgio Giannattasio; Ying Lai; Francescopaolo Granata; Carine M. Mounier; Laxman Nallan; Rob Oslund; Christina C. Leslie; Gianni Marone; Gérard Lambeau; Michael H. Gelb; Massimo Triggiani (92-102).
Macrophages are a major source of lipid mediators in the human lung. Expression and contribution of cytosolic (cPLA2) and secreted phospholipases A2 (sPLA2) to the generation of lipid mediators in human macrophages are unclear. We investigated the expression and role of different PLA2s in the production of lipid mediators in primary human lung macrophages. Macrophages express the alpha, but not the zeta isoform of group IV and group VIA cPLA2 (iPLA2). Two structurally-divergent inhibitors of group IV cPLA2 completely block arachidonic acid release by macrophages in response to non-physiological (Ca2+ ionophores and phorbol esters) and physiological agonists (lipopolysaccharide and Mycobacterium protein derivative). These inhibitors also reduce by 70% the synthesis of platelet-activating factor by activated macrophages. Among the full set of human sPLA2s, macrophages express group IIA, IID, IIE, IIF, V, X and XIIA, but not group IB and III enzymes. Me-Indoxam, a potent and cell impermeable inhibitor of several sPLA2s, has no effect on arachidonate release or platelet-activating factor production. Agonist-induced exocytosis is not influenced by cPLA2 inhibitors at concentrations that block arachidonic acid release. Our results indicate that human macrophages express cPLA2-alpha, iPLA2 and several sPLA2s. Cytosolic PLA2-alpha is the major enzyme responsible for lipid mediator production in human macrophages.
Keywords: Arachidonic acid; Platelet activating factor; Phospholipase A2; Lung macrophage; Eicosanoid; Inflammation;

Chronic leptin treatment stimulates lipid oxidation in immortalized and primary mouse skeletal muscle cells by Yunike Akasaka; Masaki Tsunoda; Tomohiro Ide; Koji Murakami (103-109).
Leptin administration enhances lipid oxidation in skeletal muscle. Nevertheless, direct and chronic effect of leptin has not been well characterized. Here, we measured the effect of leptin on skeletal muscles and their signaling pathways using differentiated C2C12 myotubes and primary myotube cultures. Differentiated myotubes expressed both the short and long forms of leptin receptors. Leptin increased lipid oxidation in myotubes in a concentration- and time-dependent manner, with significant induction of lipid oxidation occurring after 6 h. Actinomycin D completely blocked leptin-induced lipid oxidation. Leptin significantly increased phosphorylation of JAK2 and STAT3 in myotubes, and leptin-induced lipid oxidation was abolished by treatment with a JAK2 inhibitor or STAT3 siRNA. We then used mouse myotubes to measure these effects under physiological conditions. Leptin increased lipid oxidation, which again was blocked by a JAK2 inhibitor and STAT3 siRNA. These results suggest that the JAK2/STAT3 signaling pathway may underlie the chronic effects of leptin on lipid oxidation in skeletal muscles.
Keywords: Leptin; Muscle cell; Lipid oxidation; JAK; STAT;

The fungus Aspergillus tamarii metabolizes progesterone to testololactone in high yield through a sequential four step enzymatic pathway which, has demonstrated flexibility in handling a range of steroidal probes. These substrates have revealed that subtle changes in the molecular structure of the steroid lead to significant changes in route of metabolism. It was therefore of interest to determine the metabolism of a range of 5-ene containing steroidal substrates. Remarkably the primary route of 5-ene steroid metabolism involved a 3β-hydroxy-steroid dehydrogenase/Δ5–Δ4 isomerase (3β-HSD/isomerase) enzyme(s), generating 3-one-4-ene functionality and identified for the first time in a fungus with the ability to handle both dehydroepiansdrosterone (DHEA) as well as C-17 side-chain containing compounds such as pregnenolone and 3β-hydroxy-16α,17α-epoxypregn-5-en-20-one. Uniquely in all the steroids tested, 3β-HSD/isomerase activity only occurred following lactonization of the steroidal ring-D. Presence of C-7 allylic hydroxylation, in either epimeric form, inhibited 3β-HSD/isomerase activity and of the substrates tested, was only observed with DHEA and its 13α-methyl analogue. In contrast to previous studies of fungi with 3β-HSD/isomerase activity DHEA could also enter a minor hydroxylation pathway. Pregnenolone and 3β-hydroxy-16α,17α-epoxypregn-5-en-20-one were metabolized solely through the putative 3β-HSD/isomerase pathway, indicating that a 17β-methyl ketone functionality inhibits allylic oxidation at C-7. The presence of the 3β-HSD/isomerase in A. tamarii and the transformation results obtained in this study highlight an important potential role that fungi may have in the generation of environmental androgens.
Keywords: Aspergillus tamarii; Lactonization; Hydroxylation; 3β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase/isomerase; Environmental androgen; Sex change;

Mobilization of steryl esters from lipid particles of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae by Andrea Wagner; Karlheinz Grillitsch; Erich Leitner; Günther Daum (118-124).
In the yeast as in other eukaryotes, formation and hydrolysis of steryl esters (SE) are processes linked to lipid storage. In Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the three SE hydrolases Tgl1p, Yeh1p and Yeh2p contribute to SE mobilization from their site of storage, the lipid particles/droplets. Here, we provide evidence for enzymatic and cellular properties of these three hydrolytic enzymes. Using the respective single, double and triple deletion mutants and strains overexpressing the three enzymes, we demonstrate that each SE hydrolase exhibits certain substrate specificity. Interestingly, disturbance in SE mobilization also affects sterol biosynthesis in a type of feedback regulation. Sterol intermediates stored in SE and set free by SE hydrolases are recycled to the sterol biosynthetic pathway and converted to the final product, ergosterol. This recycling implies that the vast majority of sterol precursors are transported from lipid particles to the endoplasmic reticulum, where sterol biosynthesis is completed. Ergosterol formed through this route is then supplied to its subcellular destinations, especially the plasma membrane. Only a minor amount of sterol precursors are randomly distributed within the cell after cleavage from SE. Conclusively, SE storage and mobilization although being dispensable for yeast viability contribute markedly to sterol homeostasis and distribution.
Keywords: Sterol; Steryl ester; Lipid particle; Lipid droplet; Yeast; Steryl ester hydrolase;

Purple photosynthetic bacteria synthesize the acyclic carotenoids spheroidene and spirilloxanthin which are ketolated to spheroidenone and 2,2′-diketospirilloxanthin under aerobic growth. For the studies of the catalytic reaction of the ketolating enzyme, the crtA genes from Rubrivivax gelatinosus and Rhodobacter capsulatus encoding acyclic carotenoid 2-ketolases were expressed in Escherichia coli to functional enzymes. With the purified enzyme from the latter, the requirement of molecular oxygen and reduced ferredoxin for the catalytic activity was determined. Furthermore, the putative intermediate 2-HO-spheroidene was in vitro converted to the corresponding 2-keto product. Therefore, a monooxygenase mechanism involving two consecutive hydroxylation steps at C-2 were proposed for this enzyme. By functional pathway complementation studies in E. coli and enzyme kinetic studies, the product specificity of both enzymes were investigated. It appears that the ketolases could catalyze most intermediates and products of the spheroidene and spirilloxanthin pathway. This was also the case for the enzyme from Rba. capsulatus from which spirilloxanthin synthesis is absent. In general, the ketolase of Rvi. gelatinosus had a better specificity for spheroidene, HO-spheroidene and spirilloxanthin as substrates than the ketolase from Rba. capsulatus.
Keywords: 2,2′-Diketospirilloxanthin; Product specificity of carotenoid 2-ketolases; Rhodobacter capsulatus; Rubrivivax gelatinosus; Spheroidene; Spheroidenone; Spirilloxanthin;

Few studies have examined effects of feeding animals a diet deficient in n-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) but with an adequate amount of n-3 PUFAs. To do this, we fed post-weaning male rats a control n-6 and n-3 PUFA adequate diet and an n-6 deficient diet for 15 weeks, and measured stable lipid and fatty acid concentrations in different organs. The deficient diet contained nutritionally essential linoleic acid (LA,18:2n-6) as 2.3% of total fatty acids (10% of the recommended minimum LA requirement for rodents) but no arachidonic acid (AA, 20:4n-6), and an adequate amount (4.8% of total fatty acids) of α-linolenic acid (18:3n-3). The deficient compared with adequate diet did not significantly affect body weight, but decreased testis weight by 10%. AA concentration was decreased significantly in serum (− 86%), brain (− 27%), liver (− 68%), heart (− 39%), testis (− 25%), and epididymal adipose tissue (− 77%). Eicosapentaenoic (20:5n-3) and docosahexaenoic acid (22:6n-3) concentrations were increased in all but adipose tissue, and the total monounsaturated fatty acid concentration was increased in all organs. The concentration of 20:3n-9, a marker of LA deficiency, was increased by the deficient diet, and serum concentrations of triacylglycerol, total cholesterol and total phospholipid were reduced. In summary, 15 weeks of dietary n-6 PUFA deficiency with n-3 PUFA adequacy significantly reduced n-6 PUFA concentrations in different organs of male rats, while increasing n-3 PUFA and monounsaturated fatty acid concentrations. This rat model could be used to study metabolic, functional and behavioral effects of dietary n-6 PUFA deficiency.
Keywords: Linoleic acid; Arachidonic acid; Dietary deficiency; PUFA;

Regulation of hepatic fatty acid elongase 5 by LXRα–SREBP-1c by Yan Qin; Knut Tomas Dalen; Jan-Åke Gustafsson; Hilde I. Nebb (140-147).
Dietary essential fatty acids linoleic acid and α-linolenic acid are converted to arachidonic-, eicosapentaenoic-, and docosahexaenoic acid under tight regulation by nutritional status and hormones. Hepatic fatty acid elongase 5 (Elovl5) elongates C18-20 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) and is important for biosynthesis of C20–22 PUFAs. We demonstrate that Liver X Receptor α (LXRα) and sterol regulatory binding protein-1c (SREBP-1c) regulate hepatic Elovl5 expression. LXRα and LXRβ play different roles in maintenance of basal expression of Elovl5. LXRα is necessary for basal as well as LXR agonist induced Elovl5 transcription. Promoter studies revealed that the mouse Elovl5 gene is a direct SREBP-1c target. The up-regulation of Elovl5 expression by LXR agonist is likely secondary to the induction of SREBP-1c. PUFAs repress expression of SREBP-1c and Elovl5, but when combined with LXR ligand stimulation, which increases SREBP-1c mRNA and nuclear SREBP-1c, Elovl5 mRNA levels are restored to normal. Our studies suggest that an LXRα–SREBP-1c pathway plays a regulatory role in hepatic biosynthesis of PUFAs through transcriptional activation of Elovl5 as well as other desaturases. The stimulatory role of LXRα–SREBP-1c in the production of PUFAs enables the possibility for a feedback regulation of hepatic lipogenesis through PUFA mediated repression of SREBP-1c expression.
Keywords: PUFAs; Fatty acid elongase 5; Liver X receptor; Sterol-regulatory binding protein;