[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Brown adipose tissue (BAT) is a key tissue for energy expenditure via fat and glucose oxidation for thermogenesis. In this study, we demonstrate that the myostatin/activin receptor IIB (ActRIIB) pathway, which serves as an important negative regulator of muscle growth, is also a negative regulator of brown adipocyte differentiation. In parallel to the anticipated hypertrophy of skeletal muscle, the pharmacological inhibition of ActRIIB in mice, using a neutralizing antibody, increases the amount of BAT without directly affecting white adipose tissue. Mechanistically, inhibition of ActRIIB inhibits Smad3 signaling and activates the expression of myoglobin and PGC-1 coregulators in brown adipocytes. Consequently, ActRIIB blockade in brown adipose tissue enhances mitochondrial function and uncoupled respiration, translating into beneficial functional consequences, including enhanced cold tolerance and increased energy expenditure. Importantly, ActRIIB inhibition enhanced energy expenditure only at ambient temperature or in the cold and not at thermoneutrality, where nonshivering thermogenesis is minimal, strongly suggesting that brown fat activation plays a prominent role in the metabolic actions of ActRIIB inhibition.
Molecular and cellular biology 05/2012; 32(14):2871-9. · 6.06 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Mutations in leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 (LRRK2) cause late-onset Parkinson's disease (PD), but the underlying pathophysiological mechanisms and the normal function of this large multidomain protein remain speculative. To address the role of this protein in vivo, we generated three different LRRK2 mutant mouse lines. Mice completely lacking the LRRK2 protein (knock-out, KO) showed an early-onset (age 6 weeks) marked increase in number and size of secondary lysosomes in kidney proximal tubule cells and lamellar bodies in lung type II cells. Mice expressing a LRRK2 kinase-dead (KD) mutant from the endogenous locus displayed similar early-onset pathophysiological changes in kidney but not lung. KD mutants had dramatically reduced full-length LRRK2 protein levels in the kidney and this genetic effect was mimicked pharmacologically in wild-type mice treated with a LRRK2-selective kinase inhibitor. Knock-in (KI) mice expressing the G2019S PD-associated mutation that increases LRRK2 kinase activity showed none of the LRRK2 protein level and histopathological changes observed in KD and KO mice. The autophagy marker LC3 remained unchanged but kidney mTOR and TCS2 protein levels decreased in KD and increased in KO and KI mice. Unexpectedly, KO and KI mice suffered from diastolic hypertension opposed to normal blood pressure in KD mice. Our findings demonstrate a role for LRRK2 in kidney and lung physiology and further show that LRRK2 kinase function affects LRRK2 protein steady-state levels thereby altering putative scaffold/GTPase activity. These novel aspects of peripheral LRRK2 biology critically impact ongoing attempts to develop LRRK2 selective kinase inhibitors as therapeutics for PD.
Human Molecular Genetics 08/2011; 20(21):4209-23. · 7.69 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In vitro, concentrations ≥ 10 μM of nilotinib were needed to induce markers of cytotoxicity, apoptosis, and endoplasmic reticulum stress in both neonatal rat ventricular myocytes, a putative target tissue, and non-target heart fibroblasts, indicating a lack of cardiomyocyte-specific nilotinib toxicity in vitro. In rats, oral nilotinib treatment at 80 mg/kg for 4 weeks induced increased heart weight; however, this was not associated with relevant histopathological changes or effects on heart function. Thus, nilotinib at and above clinically relevant concentrations (4.27 μM) did not induce overt cardiovascular pathologies or heart failure in vitro or in vivo under study conditions.
Leukemia research 12/2010; 35(5):631-7. · 2.36 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cytotoxic concentrations of imatinib mesylate (10-50 microM) were required to trigger markers of apoptosis and endoplasmic reticulum stress response in neonatal rat ventricular myocytes and fibroblasts, with no significant differences observed between c-Abl silenced and nonsilenced cells. In mice, oral or intraperitoneal imatinib treatment did not induce cardiovascular pathology or heart failure. In rats, high doses of oral imatinib did result in some cardiac hypertrophy. Multi-organ toxicities may have increased the cardiac workload and contributed to the cardiac hypertrophy observed in rats only. These data suggest that imatinib is not cardiotoxic at clinically relevant concentrations (5 microM).
Leukemia research 09/2010; 34(9):1180-8. · 2.36 Impact Factor