FOXO1 in the ventromedial hypothalamus regulates energy balance.
ABSTRACT The transcription factor FOXO1 plays a central role in metabolic homeostasis by regulating leptin and insulin activity in many cell types, including neurons. However, the neurons mediating these effects and the identity of the molecular targets through which FOXO1 regulates metabolism remain to be defined. Here, we show that the ventral medial nucleus of the hypothalamus (VMH) is a key site of FOXO1 action. We found that mice lacking FOXO1 in steroidogenic factor 1 (SF-1) neurons of the VMH are lean due to increased energy expenditure. The mice also failed to appropriately suppress energy expenditure in response to fasting. Furthermore, these mice displayed improved glucose tolerance due to increased insulin sensitivity in skeletal muscle and heart. Gene expression profiling and sequence analysis revealed several pathways regulated by FOXO1. In addition, we identified the nuclear receptor SF-1 as a direct FOXO1 transcriptional target in the VMH. Collectively, our data suggest that the transcriptional networks modulated by FOXO1 in VMH neurons are key components in the regulation of energy balance and glucose homeostasis.
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ABSTRACT: Leptin is an adipocyte hormone that functions as an afferent signal in a negative feedback loop regulating body weight, and acts by interacting with a receptor in the hypothalamus and other tissues. Leptin treatment has potent effects on lipid metabolism, and leads to a large, specific reduction of adipose tissue mass after several days. Here we show that leptin also acts acutely to increase glucose metabolism, although studies of leptin's effect on glucose metabolism have typically been confounded by the weight-reducing actions of leptin treatment, which by itself could affect glucose homoeostasis. We have demonstrated acute in vivo effects of intravenous and intracerebroventricular administrations of leptin on glucose metabolism. A five-hour intravenous infusion of leptin into wild-type mice increased glucose turnover and glucose uptake, but decreased hepatic glycogen content. The plasma levels of insulin and glucose did not change. Similar effects were observed after both intravenous and intracerebroventricular infusion of leptin, suggesting that effects of leptin on glucose metabolism are mediated by the central nervous system (CNS). These data indicate that leptin induces a complex metabolic response with effects on glucose as well as lipid metabolism. This response is unique to leptin, which suggests that new efferent signals emanate from the CNS after leptin treatment.Nature 10/1997; 389(6649):374-7. · 36.28 Impact Factor
Article: PI3K signaling in the ventromedial hypothalamic nucleus is required for normal energy homeostasis.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Phosphatidyl inositol 3-kinase (PI3K) signaling in the hypothalamus has been implicated in the regulation of energy homeostasis, but the critical brain sites where this intracellular signal integrates various metabolic cues to regulate food intake and energy expenditure are unknown. Here, we show that mice with reduced PI3K activity in the ventromedial hypothalamic nucleus (VMH) are more sensitive to high-fat diet-induced obesity due to reduced energy expenditure. In addition, inhibition of PI3K in the VMH impaired the ability to alter energy expenditure in response to acute high-fat diet feeding and food deprivation. Furthermore, the acute anorexigenic effects induced by exogenous leptin were blunted in the mutant mice. Collectively, our results indicate that PI3K activity in VMH neurons plays a physiologically relevant role in the regulation of energy expenditure.Cell metabolism 07/2010; 12(1):88-95. · 17.35 Impact Factor
Article: Distinct effects of leptin and a melanocortin receptor agonist injected into medial hypothalamic nuclei on glucose uptake in peripheral tissues.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: The medial hypothalamus mediates leptin-induced glucose uptake in peripheral tissues, and brain melanocortin receptors (MCRs) mediate certain central effects of leptin. However, the contributions of the leptin receptor and MCRs in individual medial hypothalamic nuclei to regulation of peripheral glucose uptake have remained unclear. We examined the effects of an injection of leptin and the MCR agonist MT-II into medial hypothalamic nuclei on glucose uptake in peripheral tissues. Leptin or MT-II was injected into the ventromedial (VMH), dorsomedial (DMH), arcuate nucleus (ARC), or paraventricular (PVH) hypothalamus or the lateral ventricle (intracerebroventricularly) in freely moving mice. The MCR antagonist SHU9119 was injected intracerebroventricularly. Glucose uptake was measured by the 2-[(3)H]deoxy-d-glucose method. Leptin injection into the VMH increased glucose uptake in skeletal muscle, brown adipose tissue (BAT), and heart, whereas that into the ARC increased glucose uptake in BAT, and that into the DMH or PVH had no effect. SHU9119 abolished these effects of leptin injected into the VMH. Injection of MT-II either into the VMH or intracerebroventricularly increased glucose uptake in skeletal muscle, BAT, and heart, whereas that into the PVH increased glucose uptake in BAT, and that into the DMH or ARC had no effect. The VMH mediates leptin- and MT-II-induced glucose uptake in skeletal muscle, BAT, and heart. These effects of leptin are dependent on MCR activation. The leptin receptor in the ARC and MCR in the PVH regulate glucose uptake in BAT. Medial hypothalamic nuclei thus play distinct roles in leptin- and MT-II-induced glucose uptake in peripheral tissues.Diabetes 09/2009; 58(12):2757-65. · 8.29 Impact Factor