bims-mimbat Biomed News
on Mitochondrial metabolism in brown adipose tissue
Issue of 2022‒07‒03
fourteen papers selected by
José Carlos de Lima-Júnior
University of California San Francisco

  1. Nat Metab. 2022 Jun;4(6): 775-790
      Obesity induces chronic inflammation resulting in insulin resistance and metabolic disorders. Cold exposure can improve insulin sensitivity in humans and rodents, but the mechanisms have not been fully elucidated. Here, we find that cold resolves obesity-induced inflammation and insulin resistance and improves glucose tolerance in diet-induced obese mice. The beneficial effects of cold exposure on improving obesity-induced inflammation and insulin resistance depend on brown adipose tissue (BAT) and liver. Using targeted liquid chromatography with tandem mass spectrometry, we discovered that cold and β3-adrenergic stimulation promote BAT to produce maresin 2 (MaR2), a member of the specialized pro-resolving mediators of bioactive lipids that play a role in the resolution of inflammation. Notably, MaR2 reduces inflammation in obesity in part by targeting macrophages in the liver. Thus, BAT-derived MaR2 could contribute to the beneficial effects of BAT activation in resolving obesity-induced inflammation and may inform therapeutic approaches to combat obesity and its complications.
  2. iScience. 2022 Jul 15. 25(7): 104547
      Brown adipose tissue (BAT) has a role in maintaining systemic metabolic health in rodents and humans. Here, we show that metabolic stress induces BAT to produce coagulation factors, which then-together with molecules derived from the circulation-promote BAT dysfunction and systemic glucose intolerance. When mice were fed a high-fat diet (HFD), the levels of tissue factor, coagulation Factor VII (FVII), activated coagulation Factor X (FXa), and protease-activated receptor 1 (PAR1) expression increased significantly in BAT. Genetic or pharmacological suppression of coagulation factor-PAR1 signaling in BAT ameliorated its whitening and improved thermogenic response and systemic glucose intolerance in mice with dietary obesity. Conversely, the activation of coagulation factor-PAR1 signaling in BAT caused mitochondrial dysfunction in brown adipocytes and systemic glucose intolerance in mice fed normal chow. These results indicate that BAT produces endogenous coagulation factors that mediate pleiotropic effects via PAR1 signaling under metabolic stress.
    Keywords:  Biological sciences; Cell biology; Human Physiology; Human metabolism
  3. Arch Biochem Biophys. 2022 Jun 28. pii: S0003-9861(22)00225-9. [Epub ahead of print] 109341
      Carnosine, which is abundant in meat, is a dipeptide composed of β-alanine and histidine, known to afford various health benefits. It has been suggested that carnosine can elicit an anti-obesity effect via induction and activation of brown/beige adipocytes responsible for non-shivering thermogenesis. However, the relationship between carnosine and brown/beige adipocytes has not been comprehensively elucidated. We hypothesized that β-alanine directly modulates brown/beige adipogenesis and performed an in vitro assessment to test this hypothesis. HB2 brown preadipocytes were differentiated using insulin from day 0. Cells were treated with various concentrations of β-alanine (12.5-100 μM) during adipogenesis (days 0-8) and differentiation (days 8-10). Then, cells were further stimulated with or without forskolin, an activator of the cAMP-dependent protein kinase pathway, on day 8 or day 10 for 4 h before harvesting. We observed that HB2 cells expressed molecules related to the transport and signal transduction of β-alanine. Treatment with β-alanine during brown adipogenesis dose-dependently enhanced forskolin-induced Ucp1 expression; this was not observed in differentiated brown adipocytes. Consistent with these findings, treatment with β-alanine during days 0-8 increased phosphorylation levels of CREB in forskolin-treated HB2 cells. In addition, β-alanine treatment during brown adipogenesis increased the expression of Pparα, known to induce brown/beige adipogenesis, in a dose-dependent manner. These findings revealed that β-alanine could target HB2 adipogenic cells and enhance forskolin-induced Ucp1 expression during brown adipogenesis, possibly by accelerating phosphorylation and activation of CREB. Thus, β-alanine, a carnosine-constituting amino acid, might directly act on brown adipogenic cells to stimulate energy expenditure.
    Keywords:  Brown adipocytes; CREB; Carnosine; UCP1; β-Alanine
  4. J Exp Biol. 2022 Jun 15. pii: jeb242612. [Epub ahead of print]225(12):
      We investigated the role of mitochondrial function in the avian thermoregulatory response to a cold environment. Using black-capped chickadees (Poecile atricapillus) acclimated to cold (-10°C) and thermoneutral (27°C) temperatures, we expected to observe an upregulation of pectoralis muscle and liver respiratory capacity that would be visible in mitochondrial adjustments in cold-acclimated birds. We also predicted that these adjustments would correlate with thermogenic capacity (Msum) and basal metabolic rate (BMR). Using tissue high-resolution respirometry, mitochondrial performance was measured as respiration rate triggered by proton leak and the activity of complex I (OXPHOSCI) and complex I+II (OXPHOSCI+CII) in the liver and pectoralis muscle. The activity of citrate synthase (CS) and cytochrome c oxidase (CCO) was also used as a marker of mitochondrial density. We found 20% higher total CS activity in the whole pectoralis muscle and 39% higher total CCO activity in the whole liver of cold-acclimated chickadees relative to that of birds kept at thermoneutrality. This indicates that cold acclimation increased overall aerobic capacity of these tissues. Msum correlated positively with mitochondrial proton leak in the muscle of cold-acclimated birds while BMR correlated with OXPHOSCI in the liver with a pattern that differed between treatments. Consequently, this study revealed a divergence in mitochondrial metabolism between thermal acclimation states in birds. Some functions of the mitochondria covary with thermogenic capacity and basal maintenance costs in patterns that are dependent on temperature and body mass.
    Keywords:   M sum ; Birds; Cold acclimation; LEAK; Metabolic intensity; Mitochondria; Oxidative phosphorylation
  5. Mol Metab. 2022 Jun 24. pii: S2212-8778(22)00104-1. [Epub ahead of print] 101535
      OBJECTIVE: Sarco/endoplasmic reticulum Ca2+-ATPase (SERCA) transports Ca2+ from the cytosol into the ER and is essential for appropriate regulation of intracellular Ca2+ homeostasis. The objective of this study was to test the hypothesis that SERCA pumps are involved in the regulation of white adipocyte hormone secretion and other aspects of adipose tissue function and that this control is disturbed in obesity-induced type-2 diabetes.METHODS: SERCA expression was measured in isolated human and mouse adipocytes as well as in whole mouse adipose tissue by Western blot and RT-qPCR. To test the significance of SERCA2 in adipocyte functionality and whole-body metabolism, we generated adipocyte-specific SERCA2 knockout mice. The mice were metabolically phenotyped by glucose tolerance and tracer studies, histological analyses, measurements of glucose-stimulated insulin release in isolated islets, and gene/protein expression analyses. We also tested the effect of pharmacological SERCA inhibition and genetic SERCA2 ablation in cultured adipocytes. Intracellular and mitochondrial Ca2+ levels were recorded with dual-wavelength ratio imaging and mitochondrial function was assessed by Seahorse technology.
    RESULTS: We demonstrate that SERCA2 is downregulated in white adipocytes from patients with obesity and type-2 diabetes as well as in adipocytes from diet-induced obese mice. SERCA2-ablated adipocytes display disturbed Ca2+ homeostasis associated with upregulated ER stress markers and impaired hormone release. These adipocyte alterations are linked to mild lipodystrophy, reduced adiponectin levels, and impaired glucose tolerance. Interestingly, adipocyte-specific SERCA2 ablation leads to increased glucose uptake in white adipose tissue while glucose uptake is reduced in brown adipose tissue. This dichotomous effect on glucose uptake is due to differently regulated mitochondrial function. In white adipocytes, SERCA2 deficiency triggers an adaptive increase in FGF21, increased mitochondrial UCP1 levels, and increased oxygen consumption rate (OCR). In contrast, brown SERCA2 null adipocytes display reduced OCR despite increased mitochondrial content and UCP1 levels compared to wild type controls.
    CONCLUSIONS: Our data suggest causal links between reduced white adipocyte SERCA2 levels, deranged adipocyte Ca2+ homeostasis, adipose tissue dysfunction and type-2 diabetes.
    Keywords:  Atp2a2; FGF21; SERCA2; adipokine; adiponectin; adipose tissue; brown adipose tissue; calcium; endoplasmatic reticulum; mitochondria; obesity; type-2 diabetes
  6. Nat Commun. 2022 Jun 30. 13(1): 3771
      For any given level of overall adiposity, individuals vary considerably in fat distribution. The inherited basis of fat distribution in the general population is not fully understood. Here, we study up to 38,965 UK Biobank participants with MRI-derived visceral (VAT), abdominal subcutaneous (ASAT), and gluteofemoral (GFAT) adipose tissue volumes. Because these fat depot volumes are highly correlated with BMI, we additionally study six local adiposity traits: VAT adjusted for BMI and height (VATadj), ASATadj, GFATadj, VAT/ASAT, VAT/GFAT, and ASAT/GFAT. We identify 250 independent common variants (39 newly-identified) associated with at least one trait, with many associations more pronounced in female participants. Rare variant association studies extend prior evidence for PDE3B as an important modulator of fat distribution. Local adiposity traits (1) highlight depot-specific genetic architecture and (2) enable construction of depot-specific polygenic scores that have divergent associations with type 2 diabetes and coronary artery disease. These results - using MRI-derived, BMI-independent measures of local adiposity - confirm fat distribution as a highly heritable trait with important implications for cardiometabolic health outcomes.
  7. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2022 Jul 05. 119(27): e2123090119
      Energy-converting NADH:ubiquinone oxidoreductase, respiratory complex I, is essential for cellular energy metabolism coupling NADH oxidation to proton translocation. The mechanism of proton translocation by complex I is still under debate. Its membrane arm contains an unusual central axis of polar and charged amino acid residues connecting the quinone binding site with the antiporter-type subunits NuoL, NuoM, and NuoN, proposed to catalyze proton translocation. Quinone chemistry probably causes conformational changes and electrostatic interactions that are propagated through these subunits by a conserved pattern of predominantly lysine, histidine, and glutamate residues. These conserved residues are thought to transfer protons along and across the membrane arm. The distinct charge distribution in the membrane arm is a prerequisite for proton translocation. Remarkably, the central subunit NuoM contains a conserved glutamate residue in a position that is taken by a lysine residue in the two other antiporter-type subunits. It was proposed that this charge asymmetry is essential for proton translocation, as it should enable NuoM to operate asynchronously with NuoL and NuoN. Accordingly, we exchanged the conserved glutamate in NuoM for a lysine residue, introducing charge symmetry in the membrane arm. The stably assembled variant pumps protons across the membrane, but with a diminished H+/e- stoichiometry of 1.5. Thus, charge asymmetry is not essential for proton translocation by complex I, casting doubts on the suggestion of an asynchronous operation of NuoL, NuoM, and NuoN. Furthermore, our data emphasize the importance of a balanced charge distribution in the protein for directional proton transfer.
    Keywords:  NADH dehydrogenase; biological energy conversion; complex I; proton translocation; respiratory chain
  8. Sci Rep. 2022 Jul 01. 12(1): 9727
      Maintaining energy production efficiency is of vital importance to plants growing under changing environments. Cardiolipin localized in the inner mitochondrial membrane plays various important roles in mitochondrial function and its activity, although the regulation of mitochondrial morphology to various stress conditions remains obscure, particularly in the context of changes in cellular water relations and metabolisms. By combining single-cell metabolomics with transmission electron microscopy, we have investigated the adaptation mechanism in tomato trichome stalk cells at moderate salt stress to determine the kinetics of cellular parameters and metabolisms. We have found that turgor loss occurred just after the stress conditions, followed by the contrasting volumetric changes in mitochondria and cells, the accumulation of TCA cycle-related metabolites at osmotic adjustment, and a temporal increase in cardiolipin concentration, resulting in a reversible topological modification in the tubulo-vesicular cristae. Because all of these cellular events were dynamically observed in the same single-cells without causing any disturbance for redox states and cytoplasmic streaming, we conclude that turgor pressure might play a regulatory role in the mitochondrial morphological switch throughout the temporal activation of cardiolipin biosynthesis, which sustains mitochondrial respiration and energy conversion even under the salt stress conditions.
  9. Commun Biol. 2022 Jul 01. 5(1): 649
      Mitochondrial ultrastructure represents a pinnacle of form and function, with the inner mitochondrial membrane (IMM) forming isolated pockets of cristae membrane (CM), separated from the inner-boundary membrane (IBM) by cristae junctions (CJ). Applying structured illumination and electron microscopy, a novel and fundamental function of MICU1 in mediating Ca2+ control over spatial membrane potential gradients (SMPGs) between CM and IMS was identified. We unveiled alterations of SMPGs by transient CJ openings when Ca2+ binds to MICU1 resulting in spatial cristae depolarization. This Ca2+/MICU1-mediated plasticity of the CJ further provides the mechanistic bedrock of the biphasic mitochondrial Ca2+ uptake kinetics via the mitochondrial Ca2+ uniporter (MCU) during intracellular Ca2+ release: Initially, high Ca2+ opens CJ via Ca2+/MICU1 and allows instant Ca2+ uptake across the CM through constantly active MCU. Second, MCU disseminates into the IBM, thus establishing Ca2+ uptake across the IBM that circumvents the CM. Under the condition of MICU1 methylation by PRMT1 in aging or cancer, UCP2 that binds to methylated MICU1 destabilizes CJ, disrupts SMPGs, and facilitates fast Ca2+ uptake via the CM.
  10. J Biol Chem. 2022 Jun 25. pii: S0021-9258(22)00645-7. [Epub ahead of print] 102203
      Lipoic acid is a sulfur containing cofactor indispensable for the function of several metabolic enzymes. In microorganisms, lipoic acid can be salvaged from the surroundings by Lipoate protein ligase A (LplA), an ATP-dependent enzyme. Alternatively, it can be synthesized by the sequential actions of Lipoate protein ligase B (LipB) and Lipoyl synthase (LipA). LipB takes up the octanoyl chain from C8-acyl carrier protein (C8-ACP), a byproduct of the type II fatty acid synthesis pathway, and transfers it to a conserved lysine of the lipoyl domain of a dehydrogenase. However, the molecular basis of its substrate recognition is still not fully understood. Using E. coli LipB as a model enzyme, we show here that the octanoyl-transferase mainly recognizes the 4'-phosphopantetheine-tethered acyl-chain of its donor substrate and weakly binds the apo-acyl carrier protein. We demonstrate LipB can accept octanoate from its own ACP and noncognate ACPs, as well as C8-CoA. Furthermore, our 1H STD and 31P NMR studies demonstrate the binding of adenosine, as well as the phosphopantetheine arm of CoA to LipB, akin to binding to LplA. Finally, we show a conserved 71RGG73 loop, analogous to the lipoate binding loop of LplA, is required for full LipB activity. Collectively, our studies highlight commonalities between LipB and LplA in their mechanism of substrate recognition. This knowledge could be of significance in the treatment of mitochondrial fatty acid synthesis related disorders.
    Keywords:  ACP; Acyl carrier protein; C(8)-CoA; CoA; Glycine cleavage system H protein; Lipoate protein ligase B; NMR; lipoic acid synthesis
  11. Sci Adv. 2022 Jul;8(26): eabn7901
      Exposure to cold triggers a spike in cytosolic calcium (Ca2+) that often leads to transcriptional reprogramming in plants. However, how this Ca2+ signal is perceived and relayed to the downstream cold signaling pathway remains unknown. Here, we show that the CALCIUM-DEPENDENT PROTEIN KINASE 28 (CPK28) initiates a phosphorylation cascade to specify transcriptional reprogramming downstream of cold-induced Ca2+ signal. Plasma membrane (PM)-localized CPK28 is activated rapidly upon cold shock within 10 seconds in a Ca2+-dependent manner. CPK28 then phosphorylates and promotes the nuclear translocation of NIN-LIKE PROTEIN 7 (NLP7), a transcription factor that specifies the transcriptional reprogramming of cold-responsive gene sets in response to Ca2+, thereby positively regulating plant response to cold stress. This study elucidates a previously unidentified mechanism by which the CPK28-NLP7 regulatory module integrates cold-evoked Ca2+ signal and transcriptome and thus uncovers a key strategy for the rapid perception and transduction of cold signals from the PM to the nucleus.
  12. Nat Commun. 2022 Jun 27. 13(1): 3682
      The bacterial respiratory electron transport system (ETS) is branched to allow condition-specific modulation of energy metabolism. There is a detailed understanding of the structural and biochemical features of respiratory enzymes; however, a holistic examination of the system and its plasticity is lacking. Here we generate four strains of Escherichia coli harboring unbranched ETS that pump 1, 2, 3, or 4 proton(s) per electron and characterized them using a combination of synergistic methods (adaptive laboratory evolution, multi-omic analyses, and computation of proteome allocation). We report that: (a) all four ETS variants evolve to a similar optimized growth rate, and (b) the laboratory evolutions generate specific rewiring of major energy-generating pathways, coupled to the ETS, to optimize ATP production capability. We thus define an Aero-Type System (ATS), which is a generalization of the aerobic bioenergetics and is a metabolic systems biology description of respiration and its inherent plasticity.
  13. Mol Cell. 2022 Jun 24. pii: S1097-2765(22)00544-5. [Epub ahead of print]
      Bicarbonate (HCO3-) ions maintain pH homeostasis in eukaryotic cells and serve as a carbonyl donor to support cellular metabolism. However, whether the abundance of HCO3- is regulated or harnessed to promote cell growth is unknown. The mechanistic target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1) adjusts cellular metabolism to support biomass production and cell growth. We find that mTORC1 stimulates the intracellular transport of HCO3- to promote nucleotide synthesis through the selective translational regulation of the sodium bicarbonate cotransporter SLC4A7. Downstream of mTORC1, SLC4A7 mRNA translation required the S6K-dependent phosphorylation of the translation factor eIF4B. In mTORC1-driven cells, loss of SLC4A7 resulted in reduced cell and tumor growth and decreased flux through de novo purine and pyrimidine synthesis in human cells and tumors without altering the intracellular pH. Thus, mTORC1 signaling, through the control of SLC4A7 expression, harnesses environmental bicarbonate to promote anabolic metabolism, cell biomass, and growth.
    Keywords:  SLC4A7/NBCn1; bicarbonate metabolism; mTOR signaling; purine metabolism; pyrimidine metabolism