Jay D Horton

University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, Texas, United States

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Publications (88)763.98 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: The hormone erythropoietin (EPO), which is synthesized in the kidney or liver of adult mammals, controls erythrocyte production and is regulated by the stress-responsive transcription factor hypoxia-inducible factor-2 (HIF-2). We previously reported that the lysine acetyltransferase CREB-binding protein (CBP) is required for HIF-2α acetylation and efficient HIF-2-dependent EPO induction during hypoxia. We now show that these processes require acetate-dependent acetyl CoA synthetase 2 (ACSS2). In human Hep3B hepatoma cells and in EPO-generating organs of hypoxic or acutely anemic mice, acetate levels rise and ACSS2 is required for HIF-2α acetylation, CBP-HIF-2α complex formation, CBP-HIF-2α recruitment to the EPO enhancer and efficient induction of EPO gene expression. In acutely anemic mice, acetate supplementation augments stress erythropoiesis in an ACSS2-dependent manner. Moreover, in acquired and inherited chronic anemia mouse models, acetate supplementation increases EPO expression and the resting hematocrit. Thus, a mammalian stress-responsive acetate switch controls HIF-2 signaling and EPO induction during pathophysiological states marked by tissue hypoxia.
    Nature medicine. 08/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: In this study we examined the role of phosphatidic acid (PA) in hepatic glucose production (HGP) and development of hepatic insulin resistance in mice that lack AGPAT2. Liver LPA and PA levels were increased ~2-fold and ~5-fold respectively in male Agpat2-/- mice compared to WT mice. In the absence of AGPAT2, the liver can synthesize PAs by activating diacylglycerol kinase or phospholipase D, both of which were elevated in the livers of Agpat2-/- mice. We found that PAs C16:0/18:1 and C18:1/20:4 enhanced HGP in primary WT hepatocytes, an effect that was further enhanced in primary hepatocytes from Agpat2-/- mice. LPAs C16:0 and C18:1 failed to increase HGP in primary hepatocytes. The activation of HGP was accompanied by an upregulation of the key gluconeogenic enzymes glucose-6-phosphatase and phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase. This activation was suppressed by insulin in the WT primary hepatocytes but not in the Agpat2-/- primary hepatocytes. Thus, the lack of normal insulin signaling in Agpat2-/- livers allows unrestricted PA-induced gluconeogenesis significantly contributing to the development of hyperglycemia in these mice.
    Journal of Biological Chemistry 01/2014; · 4.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Leptin is essential for energy homeostasis and regulation of food intake. Patients with congenital generalized lipodystrophy (CGL) due to mutations in 1-acylglycerol-3-phosphate-O-acyltransferase 2 (AGPAT2) and the CGL murine model Agpat2-/- mice, both, have severe insulin resistance, diabetes mellitus, hepatic steatosis and low plasma leptin levels. In this study, we show that continuous leptin treatment of Agpat2-/- mice for 28 days reduced plasma insulin and glucose levels and normalized hepatic steatosis and hypertriglyceridemia in Agpat2-/- mice. Leptin also partially, but significantly reversed the low plasma thyroxine and high corticosterone levels found in Agpat2-/- mice. Levels of carbohydrate response element binding protein (ChREBP) were reduced, whereas lipogenic gene expression were increased in the livers of Agpat2-/- mice, suggesting that deregulated ChREBP contributed to the development of fatty livers in these mice and that this transcription factor is a target of leptins beneficial metabolic action. Leptin administration did not change hepatic fatty acid oxidation enzymes mRNA levels in Agpat2-/- mice. The selective deletion of leptin receptors only in hepatocytes did not prevent the positive metabolic actions of leptin in Agpat2-/- mice, supporting the previous studies suggesting that the majority of metabolic actions of leptin are dependent on its action in non-hepatocyte cells and/or the central nervous system.
    The Journal of Lipid Research 11/2013; · 4.39 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin type 9 (PCSK9) binds to LDL receptors, leading to their degradation. Genetics studies have shown that loss-of-function mutations in PCSK9 result in reduced plasma LDL cholesterol and decreased risk of coronary heart disease. We aimed to investigate the safety and efficacy of ALN-PCS, a small interfering RNA that inhibits PCSK9 synthesis, in healthy volunteers with raised cholesterol who were not on lipid-lowering treatment. We did a randomised, single-blind, placebo-controlled, phase 1 dose-escalation study in healthy adult volunteers with serum LDL cholesterol of 3·00 mmol/L or higher. Participants were randomly assigned in a 3:1 ratio by computer algorithm to receive one dose of intravenous ALN-PCS (with doses ranging from 0·015 to 0·400 mg/kg) or placebo. The primary endpoint was safety and tolerability of ALN-PCS. Secondary endpoints were the pharmacokinetic characteristics of ALN-PCS and its pharmacodynamic effects on PCSK9 and LDL cholesterol. Study participants were masked to treatment assignment. Analysis was per protocol and we used ANCOVA to analyse pharmacodynamic endpoint data. This trial is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT01437059. Of 32 participants, 24 were randomly allocated to receive a single dose of ALN-PCS (0·015 mg/kg [n=3], 0·045 mg/kg [n=3], 0·090 mg/kg [n=3], 0·150 mg/kg [n=3], 0·250 mg/kg [n=6], or 0·400 mg/kg [n=6]) and eight to placebo. The proportions of patients affected by treatment-emergent adverse events were similar in the ALN-PCS and placebo groups (19 [79%] vs seven [88%]). ALN-PCS was rapidly distributed, with peak concentration and area under the curve (0 to last measurement) increasing in a roughly dose-proportional way across the dose range tested. In the group given 0·400 mg/kg of ALN-PCS, treatment resulted in a mean 70% reduction in circulating PCSK9 plasma protein (p<0·0001) and a mean 40% reduction in LDL cholesterol from baseline relative to placebo (p<0·0001). Our results suggest that inhibition of PCSK9 synthesis by RNA interference (RNAi) provides a potentially safe mechanism to reduce LDL cholesterol concentration in healthy individuals with raised cholesterol. These results support the further assessment of ALN-PCS in patients with hypercholesterolaemia, including those being treated with statins. This study is the first to show an RNAi drug being used to affect a clinically validated endpoint (ie, LDL cholesterol) in human beings. Alnylam Pharmaceuticals.
    The Lancet 10/2013; · 39.06 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Dendrite and synapse development are critical for establishing appropriate neuronal circuits, and disrupted timing of these events can alter neural connectivity. Using microarrays, we have identified a nuclear factor I (NFI)-regulated temporal switch program linked to dendrite formation in developing mouse cerebellar granule neurons (CGNs). NFI function was required for upregulation of many synapse-related genes as well as downregulation of genes expressed in immature CGNs. Chromatin immunoprecipitation analysis revealed that a central feature of this program was temporally regulated NFI occupancy of late-expressed gene promoters. Developing CGNs undergo a hyperpolarizing shift in membrane potential, and depolarization inhibits their dendritic and synaptic maturation via activation of calcineurin (CaN) (Okazawa et al., 2009). Maintaining immature CGNs in a depolarized state blocked NFI temporal occupancy of late-expressed genes and the NFI switch program via activation of the CaN/nuclear factor of activated T-cells, cytoplasmic (NFATc) pathway and promotion of late-gene occupancy by NFATc4, and these mechanisms inhibited dendritogenesis. Conversely, inhibition of the CaN/NFATc pathway in CGNs maturing under physiological nondepolarizing conditions upregulated the NFI switch program, NFI temporal occupancy, and dendrite formation. NFATc4 occupied the promoters of late-expressed NFI program genes in immature mouse cerebellum, and its binding was temporally downregulated with development. Further, NFI temporal binding and switch gene expression were upregulated in the developing cerebellum of Nfatc4 (-/-) mice. These findings define a novel NFI switch and temporal occupancy program that forms a critical link between membrane potential/CaN and dendritic maturation in CGNs. CaN inhibits the program and NFI occupancy in immature CGNs by promoting NFATc4 binding to late-expressed genes. As maturing CGNs become more hyperpolarized, NFATc4 binding declines leading to onset of NFI temporal binding and the NFI switch program.
    Journal of Neuroscience 02/2013; 33(7):2860-2872. · 6.91 Impact Factor
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    Russell A Debose-Boyd, Jay D Horton
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    ABSTRACT: An unexpected connection between a secretory protein called PCSK9 and Sec24A, a well known protein-transport protein, could lead to the development of novel treatments for patients with high levels of low-density lipoproteins in their blood.
    eLife Sciences 01/2013; 2:e00663.
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    ABSTRACT: We established a model of chronic portal vein catheterization in an awake non-human primate to provide a comprehensive evaluation of the metabolic response to low-carbohydrate, high-fat (LCHF; 20% carbohydrate and 65% fat) and high-carbohydrate, low-fat (HCLF; 65% carbohydrate and 20% fat) meal ingestion. Each meal was given one week apart to 5 young adult (7.8±1.3 yrs old) male baboons. A [U-(13)C]glucose tracer was added to the meal and a [6,6-(2)H(2)]glucose tracer was infused systemically to assess glucose kinetics. Plasma area-under-the-curves (AUCs) of glucose, insulin, and c-peptide in the femoral artery and of glucose and insulin in the portal vein were higher (P≤0.05) after ingestion of the HCLF than the LCHF meal. Compared with the LCHF meal, the rate of appearance of ingested glucose into the portal vein and the systemic circulation was greater after the HCLF meal (P<0.05). Endogenous glucose production decreased by ~40% after ingestion of the HCLF meal, but was not affected by the LCHF meal (P<0.05). Portal vein blood flow increased (P<0.001) to a similar extent after consumption of either meal. In conclusion, a LCHF diet causes minimal changes in the rate of glucose appearance in both portal and systemic circulations, does not affect the rate of endogenous glucose production, and causes minimal stimulation of c-peptide and insulin. These observations demonstrate that LCHF diets cause minimal perturbations in glucose homeostasis and pancreatic β-cell activity.
    AJP Endocrinology and Metabolism 12/2012; · 4.51 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Postprandially, the liver experiences an extensive metabolic reprogramming that is required for the switch from glucose production to glucose assimilation. Upon refeeding, the unfolded protein response (UPR) is rapidly, though only transiently, activated. Activation of the UPR results in a cessation of protein translation, increased chaperone expression, and increased ER-mediated protein degradation, but it is not clear how the UPR is involved in the postprandial switch to alternate fuel sources. Activation of the inositol-requiring enzyme 1 (IRE1) branch of the UPR signaling pathway triggers expression of the transcription factor Xbp1s. Using a mouse model with liver-specific inducible Xbp1s expression, we demonstrate that Xbp1s is sufficient to provoke a metabolic switch characteristic of the postprandial state, even in the absence of caloric influx. Mechanistically, we identified UDP-galactose-4-epimerase (GalE) as a direct transcriptional target of Xbp1s and as the key mediator of this effect. Our results provide evidence that the Xbp1s/GalE pathway functions as a novel regulatory nexus connecting the UPR to the characteristic postprandial metabolic changes in hepatocytes.
    The Journal of clinical investigation 12/2012; · 15.39 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Individuals with type 2 diabetes have an increased risk of atherosclerosis. One factor underlying this is dyslipidemia, which in hyperinsulinemic subjects with early type 2 diabetes is typically characterized by increased VLDL secretion but normal LDL cholesterol levels, possibly reflecting enhanced catabolism of LDL via hepatic LDLRs. Recent studies have also suggested that hepatic insulin signaling sustains LDLR levels. We therefore sought to elucidate the mechanisms linking hepatic insulin signaling to regulation of LDLR levels. In WT mice, insulin receptor knockdown by shRNA resulted in decreased hepatic mTORC1 signaling and LDLR protein levels. It also led to increased expression of PCSK9, a known post-transcriptional regulator of LDLR expression. Administration of the mTORC1 inhibitor rapamycin caused increased expression of PCSK9, decreased levels of hepatic LDLR protein, and increased levels of VLDL/LDL cholesterol in WT but not Pcsk9-/- mice. Conversely, mice with increased hepatic mTORC1 activity exhibited decreased expression of PCSK9 and increased levels of hepatic LDLR protein levels. Pcsk9 is regulated by the transcription factor HNF1α, and our further detailed analyses suggest that increased mTORC1 activity leads to activation of PKCδ, reduced activity of HNF4α and HNF1α, decreased PCSK9 expression, and ultimately increased hepatic LDLR protein levels, which result in decreased circulating LDL levels. We therefore suggest that PCSK9 inhibition could be an effective way to reduce the adverse side effect of increased LDL levels that is observed in transplant patients taking rapamycin as immunosuppressive therapy.
    The Journal of clinical investigation 03/2012; 122(4):1262-70. · 15.39 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Insulin resistance leads to hypertriglyceridemia and hepatic steatosis and is associated with increased SREBP-1c, a transcription factor that activates fatty acid synthesis. Here, we show that steatosis in insulin-resistant ob/ob mice was abolished by deletion of Scap, an escort protein necessary for generating nuclear isoforms of all three SREBPs. Scap deletion reduced lipid synthesis and prevented fatty livers despite persistent obesity, hyperinsulinemia, and hyperglycemia. Scap deficiency also prevented steatosis in mice fed high-fat diets. Steatosis was also prevented when siRNAs were used to silence Scap in livers of sucrose-fed hamsters, a model of diet-induced steatosis and hypertriglyceridemia. This silencing reduced all three nuclear SREBPs, decreasing lipid biosynthesis and abolishing sucrose-induced hypertriglyceridemia. These results demonstrate that SREBP activation is essential for development of diabetic hepatic steatosis and carbohydrate-induced hypertriglyceridemia, but not insulin resistance. Inhibition of SREBP activation has therapeutic potential for treatment of hypertriglyceridemia and fatty liver disease.
    Cell metabolism 02/2012; 15(2):240-6. · 17.35 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Adiponectin overexpression in mice increases insulin sensitivity independent of adiposity. Here, we combined stable isotope infusion and in vivo measurements of lipid flux with transcriptomic analysis to characterize fatty acid metabolism in transgenic mice that overexpress adiponectin via the aP2-promoter (ADNTg). Compared with controls, fasted ADNTg mice demonstrated a 31% reduction in plasma free fatty acid concentrations (P = 0.008), a doubling of ketones (P = 0.028), and a 68% increase in free fatty acid turnover in plasma (15.1 ± 1.5 vs. 25.3 ± 6.8 mg/kg · min, P = 0.011). ADNTg mice had 2-fold more brown adipose tissue mass, and triglyceride synthesis and turnover were 5-fold greater in this organ (P = 0.046). Epididymal white adipose tissue was slightly reduced, possibly due to the approximately 1.5-fold increase in the expression of genes involved in oxidation (peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor α, peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-γ coactivator 1α, and uncoupling protein 3). In ADNTg liver, lipogenic gene expression was reduced, but there was an unexpected increase in the expression of retinoid pathway genes (hepatic retinol binding protein 1 and retinoic acid receptor beta and adipose Cyp26A1) and liver retinyl ester content (64% higher, P < 0.02). Combined, these data support a physiological link between adiponectin signaling and increased efficiency of triglyceride synthesis and hydrolysis, a process that can be controlled by retinoids. Interactions between adiponectin and retinoids may underlie adiponectin's effects on intermediary metabolism.
    Endocrinology 11/2011; 153(1):113-22. · 4.72 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Obesity is associated with unfavorable alterations in plasma lipid concentrations. Data obtained from studies in cultured cells and rodent models show that Protein Convertase Subtilisn/Kexin 9 (PCSK9), a secreted protein that leads to degradation of LDL receptors in the liver, is an important regulator of plasma LDL cholesterol concentrations. Recent evidence suggests that PCSK9 may also regulate the very low density lipoprotein (VLDL) receptor expression and VLDL-triglyceride (TG) metabolism. The purpose of this study was to determine whether circulating PCSK9 concentrations are correlated with VLDL-triglyceride kinetics in obese people. Plasma PCSK9 concentration and VLDL-TG kinetics were evaluated in 39 nondiabetic, obese subjects (body mass index 36.9 ± 4.3 kg/m(2)). Body composition was assessed by using dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry, and VLDL-TG kinetics were assessed by using stable isotopically labeled tracer infusion. We found that plasma PCSK9 concentrations correlated significantly with percent body fat (r = 0.322, P = 0.046) and serum LDL-cholesterol concentrations (r = 0.333, P = 0.036), but not with VLDL-TG secretion rate (r = 0.083, P = 0.614) or clearance rate (r = 0.032, P = 0.845). These data suggest that PCSK9 is likely involved in LDL-cholesterol metabolism, but it is not a clinically important regulator of VLDL kinetics in obese individuals.
    Translational research : the journal of laboratory and clinical medicine. 11/2011; 158(5):302-6.
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    ABSTRACT: Loss-of-function mutations in 1-acylglycerol-3-phosphate O-acyltransferase (AGPAT) 2 in humans and mice result in loss of both the white and brown adipose tissues from birth. AGPAT2 generates precursors for the synthesis of glycerophospholipids and triacylglycerols. Loss of adipose tissue, or lipodystrophy, results in hyperinsulinemia, diabetes mellitus, and severe hepatic steatosis. Here, we analyzed biochemical properties of human AGPAT2 and its close homolog, AGPAT1, and we studied their role in liver by transducing their expression via recombinant adenoviruses in Agpat2−/− mice. The in vitro substrate specificities of AGPAT1 and AGPAT2 are quite similar for lysophosphatidic acid and acyl-CoA. Protein homology modeling of both the AGPATs with glycerol-3-phosphate acyltransferase 1 (GPAT1) revealed that they have similar tertiary protein structure, which is consistent with their similar substrate specificities. When co-expressed, both isoforms co-localize to the endoplasmic reticulum. Despite such similarities, restoring AGPAT activity in liver by overexpression of either AGPAT1 or AGPAT2 in Agpat2−/− mice failed to ameliorate the hepatic steatosis. From these studies, we suggest that the role of AGPAT1 or AGPAT2 in liver lipogenesis is minimal and that accumulation of liver fat is primarily a consequence of insulin resistance and loss of adipose tissue in Agpat2−/− mice.
    Journal of Biological Chemistry 10/2011; 286(43):37676-37691. · 4.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Loss-of-function mutations in 1-acylglycerol-3-phosphate O-acyltransferase (AGPAT) 2 in humans and mice result in loss of both the white and brown adipose tissues from birth. AGPAT2 generates precursors for the synthesis of glycerophospholipids and triacylglycerols. Loss of adipose tissue, or lipodystrophy, results in hyperinsulinemia, diabetes mellitus, and severe hepatic steatosis. Here, we analyzed biochemical properties of human AGPAT2 and its close homolog, AGPAT1, and we studied their role in liver by transducing their expression via recombinant adenoviruses in Agpat2(-/-) mice. The in vitro substrate specificities of AGPAT1 and AGPAT2 are quite similar for lysophosphatidic acid and acyl-CoA. Protein homology modeling of both the AGPATs with glycerol-3-phosphate acyltransferase 1 (GPAT1) revealed that they have similar tertiary protein structure, which is consistent with their similar substrate specificities. When co-expressed, both isoforms co-localize to the endoplasmic reticulum. Despite such similarities, restoring AGPAT activity in liver by overexpression of either AGPAT1 or AGPAT2 in Agpat2(-/-) mice failed to ameliorate the hepatic steatosis. From these studies, we suggest that the role of AGPAT1 or AGPAT2 in liver lipogenesis is minimal and that accumulation of liver fat is primarily a consequence of insulin resistance and loss of adipose tissue in Agpat2(-/-) mice.
    Journal of Biological Chemistry 08/2011; 286(43):37676-91. · 4.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Loss-of-function mutations in 1-acylglycerol-3-phosphate-O-acyltransferase 2 (AGPAT2) in humans and mice result in loss of both the white and brown adipose tissue from birth. AGPAT2 generates precursors for the synthesis of glycerophospholipids and triacylglycerols. Loss of adipose tissue or lipodystrophy results in hyperinsulinemia, diabetes mellitus and severe hepatic steatosis. Here, we analyzed biochemical properties of human AGPAT2 and its close homolog, AGPAT1, and studied their role in liver by transducing their expression via recombinant adenoviruses in Agpat2-/- mice. The in-vitro substrate specificities of AGPAT1 and AGPAT2 are quite similar for lysophosphatidic acid and acyl-CoA. Protein homology modeling of both the AGPATs with glycerol-3-phosphate acyltransferase 1 (GPAT1) revealed that they have similar tertiary protein structure, which is consistent with their similar substrate specificities. When co-expressed, both isoforms co-localize to the endoplasmic reticulum. Despite such similarities, restoring AGPAT activity in liver by over expression of either AGPAT1 or AGPAT2 in Agpat2-/- mice failed to ameliorate the hepatic steatosis. From these studies we suggest that the role of AGPAT1 or AGPAT2 in liver lipogenesis is minimal and that accumulation of liver fat is primarily a consequence of insulin resistance and loss of adipose tissue in Agpat2-/- mice.
    Journal of Biological Chemistry 08/2011; · 4.65 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The carbohydrate response element binding protein (ChREBP), a basic helix-loop-helix/leucine zipper transcription factor, plays a critical role in the control of lipogenesis in the liver. To identify the direct targets of ChREBP on a genome-wide scale and provide more insight into the mechanism by which ChREBP regulates glucose-responsive gene expression, we performed chromatin immunoprecipitation-sequencing and gene expression analysis. We identified 1153 ChREBP binding sites and 783 target genes using the chromatin from HepG2, a human hepatocellular carcinoma cell line. A motif search revealed a refined consensus sequence (CABGTG-nnCnG-nGnSTG) to better represent critical elements of a functional ChREBP binding sequence. Gene ontology analysis shows that ChREBP target genes are particularly associated with lipid, fatty acid and steroid metabolism. In addition, other functional gene clusters related to transport, development and cell motility are significantly enriched. Gene set enrichment analysis reveals that ChREBP target genes are highly correlated with genes regulated by high glucose, providing a functional relevance to the genome-wide binding study. Furthermore, we have demonstrated that ChREBP may function as a transcriptional repressor as well as an activator.
    PLoS ONE 07/2011; · 3.53 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a burgeoning health problem that affects one-third of adults and an increasing number of children in developed countries. The disease begins with the aberrant accumulation of triglyceride in the liver, which in some individuals elicits an inflammatory response that can progress to cirrhosis and liver cancer. Although NAFLD is strongly associated with obesity and insulin resistance, its pathogenesis remains poorly understood, and therapeutic options are limited. Here, we discuss recent mechanistic insights into NAFLD, focusing primarily on those that have emerged from human genetic and metabolic studies.
    Science 06/2011; 332(6037):1519-23. · 31.20 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The carbohydrate response element binding protein (ChREBP), a basic helix-loop-helix/leucine zipper transcription factor, plays a critical role in the control of lipogenesis in the liver. To identify the direct targets of ChREBP on a genome-wide scale and provide more insight into the mechanism by which ChREBP regulates glucose-responsive gene expression, we performed chromatin immunoprecipitation-sequencing and gene expression analysis. We identified 1153 ChREBP binding sites and 783 target genes using the chromatin from HepG2, a human hepatocellular carcinoma cell line. A motif search revealed a refined consensus sequence (CABGTG-nnCnG-nGnSTG) to better represent critical elements of a functional ChREBP binding sequence. Gene ontology analysis shows that ChREBP target genes are particularly associated with lipid, fatty acid and steroid metabolism. In addition, other functional gene clusters related to transport, development and cell motility are significantly enriched. Gene set enrichment analysis reveals that ChREBP target genes are highly correlated with genes regulated by high glucose, providing a functional relevance to the genome-wide binding study. Furthermore, we have demonstrated that ChREBP may function as a transcriptional repressor as well as an activator.
    PLoS ONE 01/2011; 6(7):e22544. · 3.53 Impact Factor
  • Jeffrey D Browning, Jay D Horton
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    ABSTRACT: Proprotein convertase, subtilisin/kexin type 9 (PCSK9), a key regulator of plasma LDL-cholesterol (LDL-c) and cardiovascular risk, is produced in liver and secreted into plasma where it binds hepatic LDL receptors (LDLR), leading to their degradation. PCSK9 is transcriptionally activated by sterol response element-binding protein (SREBP)-2, a transcription factor that also activates all genes for cholesterol synthesis as well as the LDLR. Here we investigated the relationship between plasma PCSK9 levels and the lathosterol-to-cholesterol ratio, a marker of cholesterol biosynthesis, in 18 healthy subjects during a 48 h fast. In all individuals, plasma PCSK9 levels declined steadily during the fasting period, reaching a nadir at 36 h that was ∼58% lower than levels measured in the fed state (P < 0.001). Similarly, the lathosterol-to-cholesterol ratio declined in parallel with plasma PCSK9 concentrations during the fast, reaching a nadir at 36 h that was ∼28% lower than that measured in the fed state (P = 0.024). In summary, fasting has a marked effect on plasma PCSK9 concentrations, which is mirrored by measures of cholesterol synthesis in humans. Inasmuch as cholesterol synthesis and PCSK9 are both regulated by SREBP-2, these results suggest that plasma PCSK9 levels may serve as a surrogate marker of hepatic SREBP-2 activity in humans.
    The Journal of Lipid Research 11/2010; 51(11):3359-63. · 4.39 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Spot 14 (S14) is a protein that is abundantly expressed in lipogenic tissues and is regulated in a manner similar to other enzymes involved in fatty acid synthesis. Deletion of S14 in mice decreased lipid synthesis in lactating mammary tissue, but the mechanism of S14's action is unknown. Here we present the crystal structure of S14 to 2.65 Å and biochemical data showing that S14 can form heterodimers with MIG12. MIG12 modulates fatty acid synthesis by inducing the polymerization and activity of acetyl-CoA carboxylase, the first committed enzymatic reaction in the fatty acid synthesis pathway. Coexpression of S14 and MIG12 leads to heterodimers and reduced acetyl-CoA carboxylase polymerization and activity. The structure of S14 suggests a mechanism whereby heterodimer formation with MIG12 attenuates the ability of MIG12 to activate ACC.
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 10/2010; 107(44):18820-5. · 9.81 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

11k Citations
763.98 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 1996–2014
    • University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center
      • • Department of Molecular Genetics
      • • Department of Internal Medicine
      Dallas, Texas, United States
  • 2013
    • University of North Texas at Dallas
      Dallas, Texas, United States
  • 2010–2011
    • Washington University in St. Louis
      • Center for Human Nutrition
      Saint Louis, MO, United States
  • 1999
    • University of Texas at Dallas
      Richardson, Texas, United States