Knockdown of neuropeptide Y in the dorsomedial hypothalamus reverses high-fat diet-induced obesity and impaired glucose tolerance in rats

Yonwook J. Kim, Sheng Bi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Neuropeptide Y (NPY) in the dorsomedial hypothalamus (DMH) plays an important role in the regulation of energy balance. While DMH NPY overexpression causes hyperphagia and obesity in rats, knockdown of NPY in the DMH via adeno-associated virus (AAV)-mediated RNAi (AAVshNPY) ameliorates these alterations. Whether this knockdown has a therapeutic effect on obesity and glycemic disorder has yet to be determined. The present study sought to test this potential using a rat model of high-fat diet (HFD)-induced obesity and insulin resistance, mimicking human obesity with impaired glucose homeostasis. Rats had ad libitum access to rodent regular chow (RC) or HFD. Six weeks later, an oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) was performed for verifying HFD-induced glucose intolerance. After verification, obese rats received bilateral DMH injections of AAVshNPY or the control vector AAVshCTL, and OGTT and insulin tolerance test (ITT) were performed at 16 and 18 wk after viral injection (23 and 25 wk on HFD), respectively. Rats were killed at 26 wk on HFD. We found that AAVshCTL rats on HFD remained hyperphagic, obese, glucose intolerant, and insulin resistant relative to lean control RC-fed rats receiving DMH injection of AAVshCTL, whereas these alterations were reversed in NPY knockdown rats fed a HFD. NPY knockdown rats exhibited normal food intake, body weight, glucose tolerance, and insulin sensitivity, as seen in lean control rats. Together, these results demonstrate a therapeutic action of DMH NPY knockdown against obesity and impaired glucose homeostasis in rats, providing a potential target for the treatment of obesity and diabetes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)R134-R142
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Regulatory Integrative and Comparative Physiology
Volume310
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 2016

Keywords

  • Adeno-associated virus
  • Energy balance
  • Food intake
  • Insulin resistance
  • RNAi

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)

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