Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Genetic factor controls health-harming inflammation in obese: Trigger holds promise for treating diabetes, other chronic illnesses

Date:
June 20, 2011
Source:
Case Western Reserve University
Summary:
Researchers have discovered a genetic factor that can regulate obesity-induced inflammation that contributes to chronic health problems.

Researchers at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine have discovered a genetic factor that can regulate obesity-induced inflammation that contributes to chronic health problems.

Related Articles


If they learn to control levels of the factor in defense cells called macrophages, "We have a shot at a novel treatment for obesity and its complications, such as diabetes, heart disease and cancer," said Mukesh K. Jain, MD, Ellery Sedgwick Jr. Chair, director of the Case Cardiovascular Research Institute, professor of medicine at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine and chief research officer of the Harrington-McLaughlin Heart & Vascular Institute at University Hospitals Case Medical Center, and senior author of the new study.

A description of the research, led by Drs. Xudong Liao and Nikunj Sharma, research associates at the School of Medicine, will be published online in the Journal of Clinical Investigation on June 13.

Signals from the environment within tissues determine whether Kruppel-like factor 4, KLF4 for short, is turned off or on, which in turn determines whether macrophages become attackers or healers.

In the absence of KLF4, macrophages produce and spew toxins -- the stuff of inflammation -- that destroy invaders such as bacteria.

High levels of KLF4 turn macrophages into anti-inflammatory cells that remove the debris and secrete compounds that heal tissues.

The process works well in lean people. Fellow researchers in France found that the macrophages residing in fatty tissues of lean people contain high levels of KLF4.

But, when people eat high-fat foods and gain weight, their body fat draws more and more macrophages, the vast majority of which are of the inflammatory type. These macrophages contain low levels of KLF4 and are more easily irritated by cytokines, which are cell-signaling proteins, and fatty acids released by fat cells. The macrophages respond by producing a low level of inflammation, Jain explained.

"A low level of inflammation over time is deleterious," he said. In people, long-lasting inflammation is connected to diabetes, increased risk of cardiovascular disease, cancer and other chronic illnesses.

In experiments using mouse models, Jain's team found that when KLF4 was removed from macrophages, they all assumed the inflammatory state.

Furthermore, when the KLF4-deficient mice were fed a high-fat diet for 10 weeks, they gained 15 percent more weight than control animals fed the same diet, and developed severe diabetes as evidenced by glucose tolerance tests.

The researchers are now designing experiments to determine if they can prevent or reverse the shift from anti-inflammatory to inflammatory by increasing KLF4 levels in macrophages as they are bombarded by cytokines or fats.

If they can induce macrophages to remain anti-inflammatory, Jain said, "Would you be able to lose weight, would diabetes go away, would inflammation go away?

"Possibly."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Case Western Reserve University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Xudong Liao, Nikunj Sharma, Fehmida Kapadia, Guangjin Zhou, Yuan Lu, Hong Hong, Kaavya Paruchuri, Ganapati H. Mahabeleshwar, Elise Dalmas, Nicolas Venteclef, Chris A. Flask, Julian Kim, Bryan W. Doreian, Kurt Q. Lu, Klaus H. Kaestner, Anne Hamik, Karine Clιment, Mukesh K. Jain. Krόppel-like factor 4 regulates macrophage polarization. Journal of Clinical Investigation, 2011; DOI: 10.1172/JCI45444

Cite This Page:

Case Western Reserve University. "Genetic factor controls health-harming inflammation in obese: Trigger holds promise for treating diabetes, other chronic illnesses." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 June 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110613122514.htm>.
Case Western Reserve University. (2011, June 20). Genetic factor controls health-harming inflammation in obese: Trigger holds promise for treating diabetes, other chronic illnesses. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110613122514.htm
Case Western Reserve University. "Genetic factor controls health-harming inflammation in obese: Trigger holds promise for treating diabetes, other chronic illnesses." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110613122514.htm (accessed November 25, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

Newsy (Nov. 25, 2014) — The US FDA is announcing new calorie rules on Tuesday that will require everywhere from theaters to vending machines to include calorie counts. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Daily Serving Of Yogurt Could Reduce Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes

Daily Serving Of Yogurt Could Reduce Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes

Newsy (Nov. 25, 2014) — Need another reason to eat yogurt every day? Researchers now say it could reduce a person's risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Madagascar Working to Contain Plague Outbreak

Madagascar Working to Contain Plague Outbreak

AFP (Nov. 24, 2014) — Madagascar said Monday it is trying to contain an outbreak of plague -- similar to the Black Death that swept Medieval Europe -- that has killed 40 people and is spreading to the capital Antananarivo. Duration: 00:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Are Female Bosses More Likely To Be Depressed?

Are Female Bosses More Likely To Be Depressed?

Newsy (Nov. 24, 2014) — A new study links greater authority with increased depressive symptoms among women in the workplace. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins