Metabolic Disease

Overfed mice got rhythm

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Science  17 Aug 2018:
Vol. 361, Issue 6403, pp. 658-659
DOI: 10.1126/science.361.6403.658-f

Metabolic health is intertwined with the body's circadian clock, but the mechanisms underlying this connection are not fully understood. Studying mice, Guan et al. examined the effect of diet-induced obesity on circadian expression of genes in the liver. They found that obesity intensifies and synchronizes the liver circadian rhythms of enhancers that control the expression of two transcription factors with opposing effects on lipid metabolism. The result is enhanced synthesis and oxidation of fatty acids. Drugs activating one of these transcription factors, PPARα, are already used clinically to reduce lipid levels. Interestingly, in obese mice, these drugs were most effective when delivered at peak PPARα expression, indicating that their efficacy in humans might be optimized by administration at certain times of day.

Cell 174, 831 (2018).

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