Role of diacylglycerol O-acyltransferase (DGAT) isoforms in bovine hepatic fatty acid metabolism

Wei Yang, Shuang Wang, Juan J. Loor, Matheus G. Lopes, Yingying Zhao, Xinru Ma, Ming Li, Bingbing Zhang, Chuang Xu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Fatty acid accumulation in hepatocytes induced by high concentrations of fatty acids due to lipolysis and the associated oxidative damage they cause occur most frequently after calving. Because of their role in esterification of fatty acids, diacylglycerol acyltransferase isoforms (DGAT1 and DGAT2) could play a role in the susceptibility of dairy cows to develop fatty liver. To gain mechanistic insights, we performed in vivo and in vitro analyses using liver biopsies or isolated primary hepatocytes. The in vivo study (n = 5 cows/group) involved healthy cows [average liver triacylglycerol (TAG) = 0.78%; 0.58 to 0.93%, ratio of triglyceride weight to wet liver weight] or cows diagnosed with fatty liver (average TAG = 7.60%; 5.31 to 10.54%). In vitro, hepatocytes isolated from 3 healthy female calves (1 d old, 44 to 53 kg) were challenged with (fatty acids) or without (control) a 1.2 mM mixture of fatty acids in an attempt to induce metabolic stress. Furthermore, hepatocytes were treated with DGAT1 inhibitor or DGAT2 inhibitor for 2 h followed by a challenge with (DGAT1 inhibitor + fatty acids or DGAT2 inhibitor + fatty acids) or without (DGAT1 inhibitor or DGAT2 inhibitor) the 1.2 mM mixture of fatty acids for 12 h. Data analysis of liver biopsies was compared using a 2-tailed unpaired Student's t-test. Data from calf hepatocyte treatment comparisons were assessed by one-way ANOVA, and multiplicity for each experiment was adjusted by the Holm's procedure. Data indicated that both fatty liver and in vitro challenge with fatty acids were associated with greater mRNA and protein abundance of SREBF1, FASN, DGAT1, and DGAT2. In contrast, mRNA and protein abundance of CPT1A and very low-density lipoprotein synthesis-related proteins MTTP and APOB were markedly lower. However, compared with fatty acid challenge alone, DGAT1 inhibitor + fatty acids led to greater mRNA and protein abundance of CPT1A and APOB, and greater mRNA abundance of SREBF1 and MTTP. Furthermore, this treatment led to lower mRNA abundance of FASN and DGAT2 and TAG concentrations. Compared with fatty acid challenge alone, DGAT2 inhibitor + fatty acids led to greater mRNA and protein abundance of CPT1A, MTTP, and APOB, and lower mRNA and protein abundance of SREBF1 and FASN. In addition, compared with control and fatty acids, there was greater protein abundance of GRP78 and PERK in both DGAT1 and DGAT2 inhibitor with or without fatty acids. Furthermore, compared with control and fatty acids, reactive oxygen species concentrations in the DGAT1 inhibitor with or without fatty acid group was greater. Overall, data suggested that DGAT1 is particularly relevant in the context of hepatocyte TAG synthesis from exogenous fatty acids. Disruption of both DGAT1 and DGAT2 altered lipid homeostasis, channeling fatty acids toward oxidation and generation of reactive oxygen species. Both DGAT isoforms play a role in promoting fatty acid storage into TAG and lipid droplets to protect hepatocytes from oxidative damage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3588-3600
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Dairy Science
Volume105
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2022

Keywords

  • dairy cow
  • fatty liver
  • lactation
  • metabolism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Genetics
  • Animal Science and Zoology

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