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Find video protocols related to scientific articles indexed in Pubmed.
Manufacturing and characterization of a recombinant adeno-associated virus type 8 reference standard material.
Hum. Gene Ther.
PUBLISHED: 10-03-2014
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Abstract Gene therapy approaches using recombinant adeno-associated virus serotype 2 (rAAV2) and serotype 8 (rAAV8) have achieved significant clinical benefits. The generation of rAAV Reference Standard Materials (RSM) is key to providing points of reference for particle titer, vector genome titer, and infectious titer for gene transfer vectors. Following the example of the rAAV2RSM, here we have generated and characterized a novel RSM based on rAAV serotype 8. The rAAV8RSM was produced using transient transfection, and the purification was based on density gradient ultracentrifugation. The rAAV8RSM was distributed for characterization along with standard assay protocols to 16 laboratories worldwide. Mean titers and 95% confidence intervals were determined for capsid particles (mean, 5.50×10(11) pt/ml; CI, 4.26×10(11) to 6.75×10(11) pt/ml), vector genomes (mean, 5.75×10(11) vg/ml; CI, 3.05×10(11) to 1.09×10(12) vg/ml), and infectious units (mean, 1.26×10(9) IU/ml; CI, 6.46×10(8) to 2.51×10(9) IU/ml). Notably, there was a significant degree of variation between institutions for each assay despite the relatively tight correlation of assay results within an institution. This outcome emphasizes the need to use RSMs to calibrate the titers of rAAV vectors in preclinical and clinical studies at a time when the field is maturing rapidly. The rAAV8RSM has been deposited at the American Type Culture Collection (VR-1816) and is available to the scientific community.
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Pancreatic transduction by helper-dependent adenoviral vectors via intraductal delivery.
Hum. Gene Ther.
PUBLISHED: 07-22-2014
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Pancreatic gene transfer could be useful to treat several diseases, such as diabetes mellitus, cystic fibrosis, chronic pancreatitis, or pancreatic cancer. Helper-dependent adenoviral vectors (HDAds) are promising tools for gene therapy because of their large cloning capacity, high levels of transgene expression, and long-term persistence in immunocompetent animals. Nevertheless, the ability of HDAds to transduce the pancreas in vivo has not been investigated yet. Here, we have generated HDAds carrying pancreas-specific expression cassettes, that is, driven either by the elastase or insulin promoter, using a novel and convenient plasmid family and homologous recombination in bacteria. These HDAds were delivered to the pancreas of immunocompetent mice via intrapancreatic duct injection. HDAds, encoding a CMV-GFP reporter cassette, were able to transduce acinar and islet cells, but transgene expression was lost 15 days postinjection in correlation with severe lymphocytic infiltration. When HDAds encoding GFP under the control of the specific elastase promoter were used, expression was detected in acinar cells, but similarly, the expression almost disappeared 30 days postinjection and lymphocytic infiltration was also observed. In contrast, long-term transgene expression (>8 months) was achieved with HDAds carrying the insulin promoter and the secretable alkaline phosphatase as the reporter gene. Notably, transduction of the liver, the preferred target for adenovirus, was minimal by this route of delivery. These data indicate that HDAds could be used for pancreatic gene therapy but that selection of the expression cassette is of critical importance to achieve long-term expression of the transgene in this tissue.
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Sustained stimulation and expansion of Tregs by IL2 control autoimmunity without impairing immune responses to infection, vaccination and cancer.
Clin. Immunol.
PUBLISHED: 01-22-2014
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Interleukin 2 (IL2) is the key cytokine supporting survival and function of regulatory T cells (Tregs). We recently reported that low-dose IL2 safely expands/stimulates Tregs and improves autoimmune conditions in humans. Further development of IL2 in autoimmune diseases will require chronic IL2 administration, which could affect beneficial effector immune responses regulated by Tregs. We used recombinant adeno-associated viral vector (rAAV)-mediated gene transfer to continuously release IL2 in mice and assessed its long-term effects on immune responses. A single rAAV-IL2 injection enabled sustained stimulation and expansion of Tregs without inducing Teff activation and prevented diabetes in NOD mice. After several weeks of IL2 production, mice responded normally to a viral challenge and to vaccination, and had pregnancies with offspring that developed normally. They showed no change in the occurrence and growth of chemically-induced tumors. Altogether, chronic low-dose IL2 treatment does not affect beneficial effector immune responses at doses that prevent autoimmune diabetes.
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In vivo adeno-associated viral vector-mediated genetic engineering of white and brown adipose tissue in adult mice.
Diabetes
PUBLISHED: 09-16-2013
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Adipose tissue is pivotal in the regulation of energy homeostasis through the balance of energy storage and expenditure and as an endocrine organ. An inadequate mass and/or alterations in the metabolic and endocrine functions of adipose tissue underlie the development of obesity, insulin resistance, and type 2 diabetes. To fully understand the metabolic and molecular mechanism(s) involved in adipose dysfunction, in vivo genetic modification of adipocytes holds great potential. Here, we demonstrate that adeno-associated viral (AAV) vectors, especially serotypes 8 and 9, mediated efficient transduction of white (WAT) and brown adipose tissue (BAT) in adult lean and obese diabetic mice. The use of short versions of the adipocyte protein 2 or uncoupling protein-1 promoters or micro-RNA target sequences enabled highly specific, long-term AAV-mediated transgene expression in white or brown adipocytes. As proof of concept, delivery of AAV vectors encoding for hexokinase or vascular endothelial growth factor to WAT or BAT resulted in increased glucose uptake or increased vessel density in targeted depots. This method of gene transfer also enabled the secretion of stable high levels of the alkaline phosphatase marker protein into the bloodstream by transduced WAT. Therefore, AAV-mediated genetic engineering of adipose tissue represents a useful tool for the study of adipose pathophysiology and, likely, for the future development of new therapeutic strategies for obesity and diabetes.
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New insights into adipose tissue VEGF-A actions in the control of obesity and insulin resistance.
Adipocyte
PUBLISHED: 06-28-2013
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Vascular endothelial growth factor A (VEGF-A) is classically viewed as a key factor in angiogenesis and tissue remodeling. However, recent evidence suggests a potential role of this growth factor in the control of energy metabolism and adipose tissue function. In this regard, we and others have described the effects of the up and downregulation of VEGF-A in adipose tissue on the control of energy homeostasis. VEGF-A overexpression protects against diet-induced obesity and insulin resistance. The observation that VEGF-A overexpression leads to an increase in brown adipose tissue (BAT) thermogenesis and also promotes a "BAT-like" phenotype in white adipose tissue depots is of particular relevance for the understanding of the mechanisms underlying obesity development. In addition, VEGF-A may not only have pro-inflammatory but also anti-inflammatory properties, with a chemotactic activity specific for M2 anti-inflammatory macrophages. This new scientific evidence highlights the importance that VEGF-A actions on metabolism could have on the design of new treatments for obesity, insulin resistance and obesity-related disorders.
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Whole body correction of mucopolysaccharidosis IIIA by intracerebrospinal fluid gene therapy.
J. Clin. Invest.
PUBLISHED: 04-25-2013
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For most lysosomal storage diseases (LSDs) affecting the CNS, there is currently no cure. The BBB, which limits the bioavailability of drugs administered systemically, and the short half-life of lysosomal enzymes, hamper the development of effective therapies. Mucopolysaccharidosis type IIIA (MPS IIIA) is an autosomic recessive LSD caused by a deficiency in sulfamidase, a sulfatase involved in the stepwise degradation of glycosaminoglycan (GAG) heparan sulfate. Here, we demonstrate that intracerebrospinal fluid (intra-CSF) administration of serotype 9 adenoassociated viral vectors (AAV9s) encoding sulfamidase corrects both CNS and somatic pathology in MPS IIIA mice. Following vector administration, enzymatic activity increased throughout the brain and in serum, leading to whole body correction of GAG accumulation and lysosomal pathology, normalization of behavioral deficits, and prolonged survival. To test this strategy in a larger animal, we treated beagle dogs using intracisternal or intracerebroventricular delivery. Administration of sulfamidase-encoding AAV9 resulted in transgenic expression throughout the CNS and liver and increased sulfamidase activity in CSF. High-titer serum antibodies against AAV9 only partially blocked CSF-mediated gene transfer to the brains of dogs. Consistently, anti-AAV antibody titers were lower in CSF than in serum collected from healthy and MPS IIIA-affected children. These results support the clinical translation of this approach for the treatment of MPS IIIA and other LSDs with CNS involvement.
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Insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I)-induced chronic gliosis and retinal stress lead to neurodegeneration in a mouse model of retinopathy.
J. Biol. Chem.
PUBLISHED: 04-25-2013
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Insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) exerts multiple effects on different retinal cell types in both physiological and pathological conditions. Despite the growth factors extensively described neuroprotective actions, transgenic mice with increased intraocular levels of IGF-I showed progressive impairment of electroretinographic amplitudes up to complete loss of response, with loss of photoreceptors and bipolar, ganglion, and amacrine neurons. Neurodegeneration was preceded by the overexpression of genes related to retinal stress, acute-phase response, and gliosis, suggesting that IGF-I altered normal retinal homeostasis. Indeed, gliosis and microgliosis were present from an early age in transgenic mice, before other alterations occurred, and were accompanied by signs of oxidative stress and impaired glutamate recycling. Older mice also showed overproduction of pro-inflammatory cytokines. Our results suggest that, when chronically increased, intraocular IGF-I is responsible for the induction of deleterious cellular processes that can lead to neurodegeneration, and they highlight the importance that this growth factor may have in the pathogenesis of conditions such as ischemic or diabetic retinopathy.
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Treatment of diabetes and long-term survival after insulin and glucokinase gene therapy.
Diabetes
PUBLISHED: 02-01-2013
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Diabetes is associated with severe secondary complications, largely caused by poor glycemic control. Treatment with exogenous insulin fails to prevent these complications completely, leading to significant morbidity and mortality. We previously demonstrated that it is possible to generate a "glucose sensor" in skeletal muscle through coexpression of glucokinase and insulin, increasing glucose uptake and correcting hyperglycemia in diabetic mice. Here, we demonstrate long-term efficacy of this approach in a large animal model of diabetes. A one-time intramuscular administration of adeno-associated viral vectors of serotype 1 encoding for glucokinase and insulin in diabetic dogs resulted in normalization of fasting glycemia, accelerated disposal of glucose after oral challenge, and no episodes of hypoglycemia during exercise for >4 years after gene transfer. This was associated with recovery of body weight, reduced glycosylated plasma proteins levels, and long-term survival without secondary complications. Conversely, exogenous insulin or gene transfer for insulin or glucokinase alone failed to achieve complete correction of diabetes, indicating that the synergistic action of insulin and glucokinase is needed for full therapeutic effect. This study provides the first proof-of-concept in a large animal model for a gene transfer approach to treat diabetes.
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Adult onset global loss of the fto gene alters body composition and metabolism in the mouse.
PLoS Genet.
PUBLISHED: 01-03-2013
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The strongest BMI-associated GWAS locus in humans is the FTO gene. Rodent studies demonstrate a role for FTO in energy homeostasis and body composition. The phenotypes observed in loss of expression studies are complex with perinatal lethality, stunted growth from weaning, and significant alterations in body composition. Thus understanding how and where Fto regulates food intake, energy expenditure, and body composition is a challenge. To address this we generated a series of mice with distinct temporal and spatial loss of Fto expression. Global germline loss of Fto resulted in high perinatal lethality and a reduction in body length, fat mass, and lean mass. When ratio corrected for lean mass, mice had a significant increase in energy expenditure, but more appropriate multiple linear regression normalisation showed no difference in energy expenditure. Global deletion of Fto after the in utero and perinatal period, at 6 weeks of age, removed the high lethality of germline loss. However, there was a reduction in weight by 9 weeks, primarily as loss of lean mass. Over the subsequent 10 weeks, weight converged, driven by an increase in fat mass. There was a switch to a lower RER with no overall change in food intake or energy expenditure. To test if the phenotype can be explained by loss of Fto in the mediobasal hypothalamus, we sterotactically injected adeno-associated viral vectors encoding Cre recombinase to cause regional deletion. We observed a small reduction in food intake and weight gain with no effect on energy expenditure or body composition. Thus, although hypothalamic Fto can impact feeding, the effect of loss of Fto on body composition is brought about by its actions at sites elsewhere. Our data suggest that Fto may have a critical role in the control of lean mass, independent of its effect on food intake.
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Morphofunctional changes underlying intestinal dysmotility in diabetic RIP-I/hIFN? transgenic mice.
Int J Exp Pathol
PUBLISHED: 11-03-2011
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The pathogenetic mechanisms underlying gastrointestinal dysmotility in diabetic patients remain poorly understood, although enteric neuropathy, damage to interstitial cells of Cajal (ICC) and smooth muscle cell injury are believed to play a role. The aim of this study was to investigate the morphological and functional changes underlying intestinal dysmotility in RIP-I/hIFN? transgenic mice treated with multiple very low doses of streptozotocin (20 mg/kg, i.p., 5 days). Compared with vehicle-treated mice, streptozotocin-treated animals developed type 1 diabetes mellitus, with sustained hyperglycaemia for 3.5?months, polyphagia, polydipsia and increased faecal output without changes in faecal water content (metabolic cages). Diabetic mice had a longer intestine, longer ileal villi and wider colonic crypts (conventional microscopy) and displayed faster gastric emptying and intestinal transit. Contractility studies showed selective impaired neurotransmission in the ileum and mid-colon of diabetic mice. Compared with controls, the ileal and colonic myenteric plexus of diabetic mice revealed ultrastructural features of neuronal degeneration and HuD immunohistochemistry on whole-mount preparations showed 15% reduction in neuronal numbers. However, no immunohistochemical changes in apoptosis-related markers were noted. Lower absolute numbers of neuronal nitric oxide synthase- and choline acetyltransferase-immunopositive neurons and enhanced vasoactive intestinal polypeptide and substance P immunopositivity were observed. Ultrastructural and immunohistochemical analyses did not reveal changes in the enteric glial or ICC networks. In conclusion, this model of diabetic enteropathy shows enhanced intestinal transit associated with intestinal remodelling, including neuroplastic changes, and overt myenteric neuropathy. Such abnormalities are likely to reflect neuroadaptive and neuropathological changes occurring in this diabetic model.
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Liver production of sulfamidase reverses peripheral and ameliorates CNS pathology in mucopolysaccharidosis IIIA mice.
Mol. Ther.
PUBLISHED: 10-18-2011
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Mucopolysaccharidosis type IIIA (MPSIIIA) is an inherited lysosomal storage disease caused by deficiency of sulfamidase, resulting in accumulation of the glycosaminoglycan (GAG) heparan sulfate. It is characterized by severe progressive neurodegeneration, together with somatic alterations, which lead to death during adolescence. Here, we tested the ability of adeno-associated virus (AAV) vector-mediated genetic modification of either skeletal muscle or liver to revert the already established disease phenotype of 2-month-old MPSIIIA males and females. Intramuscular administration of AAV-Sulfamidase failed to achieve significant therapeutic benefit in either gender. In contrast, AAV8-mediated liver-directed gene transfer achieved high and sustained levels of circulating active sulfamidase, which reached normal levels in females and was fourfold higher in males, and completely corrected lysosomal GAG accumulation in most somatic tissues. Remarkably, a 50% reduction of GAG accumulation was achieved throughout the entire brain of males, which correlated with a partial improvement of the pathology of cerebellum and cortex. Liver-directed gene transfer expanded the lifespan of MPSIIIA males, underscoring the importance of reaching supraphysiological plasma levels of enzyme for maximal therapeutic benefit. These results show how liver-directed gene transfer can reverse somatic and ameliorate neurological pathology in MPSIIIA.
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Protein kinase C delta (PKC?) affects proliferation of insulin-secreting cells by promoting nuclear extrusion of the cell cycle inhibitor p21Cip1/WAF1.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 08-16-2011
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High fat diet-induced hyperglycemia and palmitate-stimulated apoptosis was prevented by specific inhibition of protein kinase C delta (PKC?) in ?-cells. To understand the role of PKC? in more detail the impact of changes in PKC? activity on proliferation and survival of insulin-secreting cells was analyzed under stress-free conditions.
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Left ventricular dysfunction with reduced functional cardiac reserve in diabetic and non-diabetic LDL-receptor deficient apolipoprotein B100-only mice.
Cardiovasc Diabetol
PUBLISHED: 04-10-2011
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Lack of suitable mouse models has hindered the studying of diabetic macrovascular complications. We examined the effects of type 2 diabetes on coronary artery disease and cardiac function in hypercholesterolemic low-density lipoprotein receptor-deficient apolipoprotein B100-only mice (LDLR-/-ApoB100/100).
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Characterization of a recombinant adeno-associated virus type 2 Reference Standard Material.
Hum. Gene Ther.
PUBLISHED: 09-16-2010
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A recombinant adeno-associated virus serotype 2 Reference Standard Material (rAAV2 RSM) has been produced and characterized with the purpose of providing a reference standard for particle titer, vector genome titer, and infectious titer for AAV2 gene transfer vectors. Production and purification of the reference material were carried out by helper virus-free transient transfection and chromatographic purification. The purified bulk material was vialed, confirmed negative for microbial contamination, and then distributed for characterization along with standard assay protocols and assay reagents to 16 laboratories worldwide. Using statistical transformation and modeling of the raw data, mean titers and confidence intervals were determined for capsid particles ({X}, 9.18?x?10¹¹ particles/ml; 95% confidence interval [CI], 7.89?x?10¹¹ to 1.05?x?10¹² particles/ml), vector genomes ({X}, 3.28?x?10¹? vector genomes/ml; 95% CI, 2.70?x?10¹? to 4.75?x?10¹? vector genomes/ml), transducing units ({X}, 5.09?x?10? transducing units/ml; 95% CI, 2.00?x?10? to 9.60?x?10? transducing units/ml), and infectious units ({X}, 4.37?x?10? TCID?? IU/ml; 95% CI, 2.06?x?10? to 9.26?x?10? TCID?? IU/ml). Further analysis confirmed the identity of the reference material as AAV2 and the purity relative to nonvector proteins as greater than 94%. One obvious trend in the quantitative data was the degree of variation between institutions for each assay despite the relatively tight correlation of assay results within an institution. This relatively poor degree of interlaboratory precision and accuracy was apparent even though attempts were made to standardize the assays by providing detailed protocols and common reagents. This is the first time that such variation between laboratories has been thoroughly documented and the findings emphasize the need in the field for universal reference standards. The rAAV2 RSM has been deposited with the American Type Culture Collection and is available to the scientific community to calibrate laboratory-specific internal titer standards. Anticipated uses of the rAAV2 RSM are discussed.
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Production, purification and characterization of adeno-associated vectors.
Curr Gene Ther
PUBLISHED: 09-10-2010
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The use of recombinant adeno-associated viral vectors (rAAVs) as gene transfer tools has increased dramatically during the past last several years, establishing AAV as the vector of choice for many therapeutic applications. With the steady advance of the field toward clinical studies, and the isolation and engineering of several novel AAV serotypes, efficient, scalable, and versatile production and purification methods are continuously under development. Here, we review the current state of the art in the various production and purification methods for rAAVs. Classical parameters and methodologies to characterize rAAV stocks will be also discussed.
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Enforced expression of protein kinase C in skeletal muscle causes physical inactivity, fatty liver and insulin resistance in the brain.
J. Cell. Mol. Med.
PUBLISHED: 06-24-2010
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Among the multitude of dysregulated signalling mechanisms that comprise insulin resistance in divergent organs, the primary events in the development of type 2 diabetes are not well established. As protein kinase C (PKC) activation is consistently present in skeletal muscle of obese and insulin resistant subjects, we generated a transgenic mouse model that overexpresses constitutively active PKC-beta(2) in skeletal muscle to test whether activation of PKC is sufficient to cause an aversive whole-body phenotype. Upon this genetic modification, increased serine phosphorylation in Irs1 was observed and followed by impaired (3)H-deoxy-glucose uptake and muscle glycogen content, and transgenic mice exhibited insulin and glucose intolerance as they age. Muscle histochemistry revealed an increase in lipid deposition (intramyocellular lipids), and transgenic mice displayed impaired expression of transcriptional regulators of genes involved in fatty acid oxidation (peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-gamma, PGC-1beta, acyl-CoA oxidase) and lipolysis (hormone-sensitive lipase). In this regard, muscle of transgenic mice exhibited a reduced capacity to oxidize palmitate and contained less mitochondria as determined by citrate synthase activity. Moreover, the phenotype included a profound decrease in the daily running distance, intra-abdominal and hepatic fat accumulation and impaired insulin action in the brain. Together, our data suggest that activation of a classical PKC in skeletal muscle as present in the pre-diabetic state is sufficient to cause disturbances in whole-body glucose and lipid metabolism followed by profound alterations in oxidative capacity, ectopic fat deposition and physical activity.
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Hypothalamic-specific manipulation of Fto, the ortholog of the human obesity gene FTO, affects food intake in rats.
PLoS ONE
PUBLISHED: 01-19-2010
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Sequence variants in the first intron of FTO are strongly associated with human obesity and human carriers of the risk alleles show evidence for increased appetite and food intake. Mice globally lacking Fto display a complex phenotype characterised by both increased energy expenditure and increased food intake. The site of action of FTO on energy balance is unclear. Fasting reduces levels of Fto mRNA in the arcuate nucleus (ARC) of the hypothalamus, a site where Fto expression is particularly high. In this study, we have extended this nutritional link by demonstrating that consumption of a high fat diet (45%) results in a 2.5 fold increase in Arc Fto expression. We have further explored the role of hypothalamic Fto in the control of food intake by using stereotactic injections coupled with AAV technology to bi-directionally modulate Fto expression. An over expression of Fto protein by 2.5-fold in the ARC results in a 14% decrease in average daily food intake in the first week. In contrast, knocking down Arc Fto expression by 40% increases food intake by 16%. mRNA levels of Agrp, Pomc and Npy, ARC-expressed genes classically associated with the control of food intake, were not affected by the manipulation of Fto expression. However, over expression of Fto resulted in a 4-fold increase in the mRNA levels of Stat3, a signalling molecule critical for leptin receptor signalling, suggesting a possible candidate for the mediation of Ftos actions. These data provide further support for the notion that FTO itself can influence key components of energy balance, and is therefore a strong candidate for the mediation of the robust association between FTO intronic variants and adiposity. Importantly, this provide the first indication that selective alteration of FTO levels in the hypothalamus can influence food intake, a finding consistent with the reported effects of FTO alleles on appetite and food intake in man.
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Overexpression of kinase-negative protein kinase Cdelta in pancreatic beta-cells protects mice from diet-induced glucose intolerance and beta-cell dysfunction.
Diabetes
PUBLISHED: 10-13-2009
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In vitro models suggest that free fatty acid-induced apoptotic beta-cell death is mediated through protein kinase C (PKC)delta. To examine the role of PKCdelta signaling in vivo, transgenic mice overexpressing a kinase-negative PKCdelta (PKCdeltaKN) selectively in beta-cells were generated and analyzed for glucose homeostasis and beta-cell survival.
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Scavenger function of resident autofluorescent perivascular macrophages and their contribution to the maintenance of the blood-retinal barrier.
Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci.
PUBLISHED: 07-15-2009
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The retina contains two distinct populations of monocyte-derived cells: perivascular macrophages, and microglia. The present study was undertaken to evaluate the presence and function in mouse and human retinas of a subtype of resident perivascular macrophages with scavenger function, different from microglia, in physiological conditions and during retinopathy.
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Increased intraocular insulin-like growth factor-I triggers blood-retinal barrier breakdown.
J. Biol. Chem.
PUBLISHED: 05-27-2009
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Blood-retinal barrier (BRB) breakdown is a key event in diabetic retinopathy and other ocular disorders that leads to increased retinal vascular permeability. This causes edema and tissue damage resulting in visual impairment. Insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I) is involved in these processes, although the relative contribution of increased systemic versus intraocular IGF-I remains controversial. Here, to elucidate the role of this factor in BRB breakdown, transgenic mice with either local or systemic elevations of IGF-I have been examined. High intraocular IGF-I, resulting from overexpression of IGF-I in the retina, increased IGF-I receptor content and signaling and led to accumulation of vascular endothelial growth factor. This was parallel to up-regulation of vascular Intercellular adhesion molecule I and retinal infiltration by bone marrow-derived microglial cells. These alterations resulted in increased vessel paracellular permeability to both low and high molecular weight compounds in IGF-I-overexpressing retinas and agreed with the loss of vascular tight junction integrity observed by electron microscopy and the altered junctional protein content. In contrast, mice with chronically elevated serum IGF-I did not show alterations in the retinal vasculature structure and permeability, indicating that circulating IGF-I cannot initiate BRB breakdown. Consistent with a key role of IGF-I signaling in retinal diseases, a strong up-regulation of the IGF-I receptor in human retinas with marked gliosis was also observed. Thus, this study demonstrates that intraocular IGF-I, but not systemic IGF-I, is sufficient to trigger processes leading to BRB breakdown and increased retinal vascular permeability. Therefore, therapeutic interventions designed to counteract local IGF-I effects may prove successful to prevent BRB disruption.
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Phosphofructo-1-kinase deficiency leads to a severe cardiac and hematological disorder in addition to skeletal muscle glycogenosis.
PLoS Genet.
PUBLISHED: 05-20-2009
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Mutations in the gene for muscle phosphofructo-1-kinase (PFKM), a key regulatory enzyme of glycolysis, cause Type VII glycogen storage disease (GSDVII). Clinical manifestations of the disease span from the severe infantile form, leading to death during childhood, to the classical form, which presents mainly with exercise intolerance. PFKM deficiency is considered as a skeletal muscle glycogenosis, but the relative contribution of altered glucose metabolism in other tissues to the pathogenesis of the disease is not fully understood. To elucidate this issue, we have generated mice deficient for PFKM (Pfkm(-/-)). Here, we show that Pfkm(-/-) mice had high lethality around weaning and reduced lifespan, because of the metabolic alterations. In skeletal muscle, including respiratory muscles, the lack of PFK activity blocked glycolysis and resulted in considerable glycogen storage and low ATP content. Although erythrocytes of Pfkm(-/-) mice preserved 50% of PFK activity, they showed strong reduction of 2,3-biphosphoglycerate concentrations and hemolysis, which was associated with compensatory reticulocytosis and splenomegaly. As a consequence of these haematological alterations, and of reduced PFK activity in the heart, Pfkm(-/-) mice developed cardiac hypertrophy with age. Taken together, these alterations resulted in muscle hypoxia and hypervascularization, impaired oxidative metabolism, fiber necrosis, and exercise intolerance. These results indicate that, in GSDVII, marked alterations in muscle bioenergetics and erythrocyte metabolism interact to produce a complex systemic disorder. Therefore, GSDVII is not simply a muscle glycogenosis, and Pfkm(-/-) mice constitute a unique model of GSDVII which may be useful for the design and assessment of new therapies.
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Targeting the association of calgranulin B (S100A9) with insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes.
J. Mol. Med.
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Calgranulin B (S100A9) was recognized as a candidate type 2 diabetes (T2D) gene in the genomic profiling of muscle from a rodent model of T2D and identifying the human orthologs of genes localized in T2D susceptibility regions. Circulating and S100A9 expressions in muscle and adipose tissue, isolated fat cells, and mouse models were evaluated. A common 5-upstream single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP; rs3014866) for S100A9 was analyzed, as well as the effects of weight loss and treatments in vitro with recombinant S100A9. S100a9 expression was increased in muscle of diabetic mice (1.6-fold, p?=?0.002), and in muscle from subjects with impaired glucose tolerance (?4-fold, p?=?0.028; n?=?34). The rs3014866 SNP was associated with circulating S100A9 and the risk of T2D, having TT carriers at 28 % (p?=?0.03) lower risk (n?=?1,450). Indeed, increased circulating S100A9 (?4-fold, p?=?0.03; n?=?206) and subcutaneous (2-fold, p?=?0.01) and omental (1.4-fold, p?=?0.04) S100A9 gene expressions (n?=?83) in TT carriers run in parallel to decreased fasting glucose and glycated hemoglobin. Accordingly, metformin led to increased S100A9 mRNA in ex vivo-treated adipose tissue explants (n?=?5/treatment). Otherwise, obese subjects showed a compensatory increase in circulating and S100A9 expressions in adipose (n?=?126), as further demonstrated by decreased levels after diet- (-34 %, p?=?0.002; n?=?20) and surgery-induced (-58 %, p?=?0.02; n?=?8) weight loss. Lipopolysaccharide led to increased S100A9 in adipose from mice (n?=?5/treatment) while recombinant S100A9 downregulated inflammation in adipocytes (n?=?3/treatment). Current findings support the strategy of testing differentially expressed genes in mice and human orthologs associated with T2D. The increased S100A9 reported for obesity and insulin resistance may be envisioned as a compensatory mechanism for inflammation.
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Nonviral-mediated hepatic expression of IGF-I increases Treg levels and suppresses autoimmune diabetes in mice.
Diabetes
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In type 1 diabetes, loss of tolerance to ?-cell antigens results in T-cell-dependent autoimmune destruction of ? cells. The abrogation of autoreactive T-cell responses is a prerequisite to achieve long-lasting correction of the disease. The liver has unique immunomodulatory properties and hepatic gene transfer results in tolerance induction and suppression of autoimmune diseases, in part by regulatory T-cell (Treg) activation. Hence, the liver could be manipulated to treat or prevent diabetes onset through expression of key genes. IGF-I may be an immunomodulatory candidate because it prevents autoimmune diabetes when expressed in ? cells or subcutaneously injected. Here, we demonstrate that transient, plasmid-derived IGF-I expression in mouse liver suppressed autoimmune diabetes progression. Suppression was associated with decreased islet inflammation and ?-cell apoptosis, increased ?-cell replication, and normalized ?-cell mass. Permanent protection depended on exogenous IGF-I expression in liver nonparenchymal cells and was associated with increased percentage of intrapancreatic Tregs. Importantly, Treg depletion completely abolished IGF-I-mediated protection confirming the therapeutic potential of these cells in autoimmune diabetes. This study demonstrates that a nonviral gene therapy combining the immunological properties of the liver and IGF-I could be beneficial in the treatment of the disease.
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Proinsulin slows retinal degeneration and vision loss in the P23H rat model of retinitis pigmentosa.
Hum. Gene Ther.
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Proinsulin has been characterized as a neuroprotective molecule. In this work we assess the therapeutic potential of proinsulin on photoreceptor degeneration, synaptic connectivity, and functional activity of the retina in the transgenic P23H rat, an animal model of autosomal dominant retinitis pigmentosa (RP). P23H homozygous rats received an intramuscular injection of an adeno-associated viral vector serotype 1 (AAV1) expressing human proinsulin (hPi+) or AAV1-null vector (hPi-) at P20. Levels of hPi in serum were determined by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), and visual function was evaluated by electroretinographic (ERG) recording at P30, P60, P90, and P120. Preservation of retinal structure was assessed by immunohistochemistry at P120. Human proinsulin was detected in serum from rats injected with hPi+ at all times tested, with average hPi levels ranging from 1.1?nM (P30) to 1.4?nM (P120). ERG recordings showed an amelioration of vision loss in hPi+ animals. The scotopic b-waves were significantly higher in hPi+ animals than in control rats at P90 and P120. This attenuation of visual deterioration correlated with a delay in photoreceptor degeneration and the preservation of retinal cytoarchitecture. hPi+ animals had 48.7% more photoreceptors than control animals. Presynaptic and postsynaptic elements, as well as the synaptic contacts between photoreceptors and bipolar or horizontal cells, were preserved in hPi+ P23H rats. Furthermore, in hPi+ rat retinas the number of rod bipolar cell bodies was greater than in control rats. Our data demonstrate that hPi expression preserves cone and rod structure and function, together with their contacts with postsynaptic neurons, in the P23H rat. These data strongly support the further development of proinsulin-based therapy to counteract retinitis pigmentosa.
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Vascular endothelial growth factor-mediated islet hypervascularization and inflammation contribute to progressive reduction of ?-cell mass.
Diabetes
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Type 2 diabetes (T2D) results from insulin resistance and inadequate insulin secretion. Insulin resistance initially causes compensatory islet hyperplasia that progresses to islet disorganization and altered vascularization, inflammation, and, finally, decreased functional ?-cell mass and hyperglycemia. The precise mechanism(s) underlying ?-cell failure remain to be elucidated. In this study, we show that in insulin-resistant high-fat diet-fed mice, the enhanced islet vascularization and inflammation was parallel to an increased expression of vascular endothelial growth factor A (VEGF). To elucidate the role of VEGF in these processes, we have genetically engineered ?-cells to overexpress VEGF (in transgenic mice or after adeno-associated viral vector-mediated gene transfer). We found that sustained increases in ?-cell VEGF levels led to disorganized, hypervascularized, and fibrotic islets, progressive macrophage infiltration, and proinflammatory cytokine production, including tumor necrosis factor-? and interleukin-1?. This resulted in impaired insulin secretion, decreased ?-cell mass, and hyperglycemia with age. These results indicate that sustained VEGF upregulation may participate in the initiation of a process leading to ?-cell failure and further suggest that compensatory islet hyperplasia and hypervascularization may contribute to progressive inflammation and ?-cell mass loss during T2D.
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Long-term retinal PEDF overexpression prevents neovascularization in a murine adult model of retinopathy.
PLoS ONE
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Neovascularization associated with diabetic retinopathy (DR) and other ocular disorders is a leading cause of visual impairment and adult-onset blindness. Currently available treatments are merely palliative and offer temporary solutions. Here, we tested the efficacy of antiangiogenic gene transfer in an animal model that mimics the chronic progression of human DR. Adeno-associated viral (AAV) vectors of serotype 2 coding for antiangiogenic Pigment Epithelium Derived Factor (PEDF) were injected in the vitreous of a 1.5 month-old transgenic model of retinopathy that develops progressive neovascularization. A single intravitreal injection led to long-term production of PEDF and to a striking inhibition of intravitreal neovascularization, normalization of retinal capillary density, and prevention of retinal detachment. This was parallel to a reduction in the intraocular levels of Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor (VEGF). Normalization of VEGF was consistent with a downregulation of downstream effectors of angiogenesis, such as the activity of Matrix Metalloproteinases (MMP) 2 and 9 and the content of Connective Tissue Growth Factor (CTGF). These results demonstrate long-term efficacy of AAV-mediated PEDF overexpression in counteracting retinal neovascularization in a relevant animal model, and provides evidence towards the use of this strategy to treat angiogenesis in DR and other chronic proliferative retinal disorders.
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Correction of pathological accumulation of glycosaminoglycans in central nervous system and peripheral tissues of MPSIIIA mice through systemic AAV9 gene transfer.
Hum. Gene Ther.
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Mucopolysaccharidosis type IIIA (MPSIIIA) is a rare lysosomal storage disorder caused by mutations in the sulfamidase gene. Accumulation of glycosaminoglycan (GAG) inside the lysosomes is associated with severe neurodegeneration as well as peripheral organ pathological changes leading to death of affected individuals during adolescence. There is no cure for MPSIIIA. Due to the limitation of the blood-brain barrier, enzyme replacement therapy and gene therapy strategies attempted thus far have not achieved whole-body correction of the disease. After the systemic administration of an adeno-associated virus 9 (AAV9) vector encoding for sulfamidase under the control of a ubiquitous promoter, we were able to obtain widespread expression of the therapeutic transgene in brain and in peripheral organs, and sulfamidase activity in serum of both male and female MPSIIIA mice. This was accompanied by the normalization of GAG storage levels in most peripheral organs. In brain, decrease in GAG tissue content following AAV9 gene transfer of sulfamidase was associated with the resolution of neuroinflammation. Finally, correction of disease phenotype resulted in a remarkable prolongation of survival of both male and female AAV-treated MPSIIIA mice. This proof-of-concept study will be relevant to the future development of therapies for MPSIIIA.
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LRH-1-dependent glucose sensing determines intermediary metabolism in liver.
J. Clin. Invest.
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Liver receptor homolog 1 (LRH-1), an established regulator of cholesterol and bile acid homeostasis, has recently emerged as a potential drug target for liver disease. Although LRH-1 activation may protect the liver against diet-induced steatosis and insulin resistance, little is known about how LRH-1 controls hepatic glucose and fatty acid metabolism under physiological conditions. We therefore assessed the role of LRH-1 in hepatic intermediary metabolism. In mice with conditional deletion of Lrh1 in liver, analysis of hepatic glucose fluxes revealed reduced glucokinase (GCK) and glycogen synthase fluxes as compared with those of wild-type littermates. These changes were attributed to direct transcriptional regulation of Gck by LRH-1. Impaired glucokinase-mediated glucose phosphorylation in LRH-1-deficient livers was also associated with reduced glycogen synthesis, glycolysis, and de novo lipogenesis in response to acute and prolonged glucose exposure. Accordingly, hepatic carbohydrate response element-binding protein activity was reduced in these animals. Cumulatively, these data identify LRH-1 as a key regulatory component of the hepatic glucose-sensing system required for proper integration of postprandial glucose and lipid metabolism.
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Operant behavior to obtain palatable food modifies neuronal plasticity in the brain reward circuit.
Eur Neuropsychopharmacol
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Palatability enhances food intake by hedonic mechanisms that prevail over caloric necessities. Different studies have demonstrated the role of endogenous cannabinoids in the mesocorticolimbic system in controlling food hedonic value and consumption. We hypothesize that the endogenous cannabinoid system could also be involved in the development of food-induced behavioral alterations, such as food-seeking and binge-eating, by a mechanism that requires neuroplastic changes in the brain reward pathway. For this purpose, we evaluated the role of the CB1 cannabinoid receptor (CB1-R) in the behavioral and neuroplastic changes induced by operant training for standard, highly caloric or highly palatable isocaloric food using different genetics, viral and pharmacological approaches. Neuroplasticity was evaluated by measuring changes in dendritic spine density in neurons previously labeled with the dye DiI. Only operant training to obtain highly palatable isocaloric food induced neuroplastic changes in neurons of the nucleus accumbens shell and prefrontal cortex that were associated to changes in food-seeking behavior. These behavioral and neuroplastic modifications induced by highly palatable isocaloric food were dependent on the activity of the CB1-R. Neuroplastic changes induced by highly palatable isocaloric food are similar to those produced by some drugs of abuse and may be crucial in the alteration of food-seeking behavior leading to overweight and obesity.
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Telomerase gene therapy in adult and old mice delays aging and increases longevity without increasing cancer.
EMBO Mol Med
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A major goal in aging research is to improve health during aging. In the case of mice, genetic manipulations that shorten or lengthen telomeres result, respectively, in decreased or increased longevity. Based on this, we have tested the effects of a telomerase gene therapy in adult (1 year of age) and old (2 years of age) mice. Treatment of 1- and 2-year old mice with an adeno associated virus (AAV) of wide tropism expressing mouse TERT had remarkable beneficial effects on health and fitness, including insulin sensitivity, osteoporosis, neuromuscular coordination and several molecular biomarkers of aging. Importantly, telomerase-treated mice did not develop more cancer than their control littermates, suggesting that the known tumorigenic activity of telomerase is severely decreased when expressed in adult or old organisms using AAV vectors. Finally, telomerase-treated mice, both at 1-year and at 2-year of age, had an increase in median lifespan of 24 and 13%, respectively. These beneficial effects were not observed with a catalytically inactive TERT, demonstrating that they require telomerase activity. Together, these results constitute a proof-of-principle of a role of TERT in delaying physiological aging and extending longevity in normal mice through a telomerase-based treatment, and demonstrate the feasibility of anti-aging gene therapy.
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Adipose tissue overexpression of vascular endothelial growth factor protects against diet-induced obesity and insulin resistance.
Diabetes
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During the expansion of fat mass in obesity, vascularization of adipose tissue is insufficient to maintain tissue normoxia. Local hypoxia develops and may result in altered adipokine expression, proinflammatory macrophage recruitment, and insulin resistance. We investigated whether an increase in adipose tissue angiogenesis could protect against obesity-induced hypoxia and, consequently, insulin resistance. Transgenic mice overexpressing vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) in brown adipose tissue (BAT) and white adipose tissue (WAT) were generated. Vessel formation, metabolism, and inflammation were studied in VEGF transgenic mice and wild-type littermates fed chow or a high-fat diet. Overexpression of VEGF resulted in increased blood vessel number and size in both WAT and BAT and protection against high-fat diet-induced hypoxia and obesity, with no differences in food intake. This was associated with increased thermogenesis and energy expenditure. Moreover, whole-body insulin sensitivity and glucose tolerance were improved. Transgenic mice presented increased macrophage infiltration, with a higher number of M2 anti-inflammatory and fewer M1 proinflammatory macrophages than wild-type littermates, thus maintaining an anti-inflammatory milieu that could avoid insulin resistance. These studies suggest that overexpression of VEGF in adipose tissue is a potential therapeutic strategy for the prevention of obesity and insulin resistance.
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JoVE Visualize is a tool created to match the last 5 years of PubMed publications to methods in JoVE's video library.

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In developing our video relationships, we compare around 5 million PubMed articles to our library of over 4,500 methods videos. In some cases the language used in the PubMed abstracts makes matching that content to a JoVE video difficult. In other cases, there happens not to be any content in our video library that is relevant to the topic of a given abstract. In these cases, our algorithms are trying their best to display videos with relevant content, which can sometimes result in matched videos with only a slight relation.