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Heat stress promotes lipid accumulation by inhibiting the AMPK-PGC-1α signaling pathway in 3T3-L1 preadipocytes

Abstract

Heat stress (HS) results in health problems in animals. This study was conducted to investigate the effect and the underlying mechanism of HS on the proliferation and differentiation process of 3T3-L1 preadipocytes. 3T3-L1 preadipocytes were treated at 37 °C or 41.5 °C. HS up-regulated the mRNA and protein expression level of heat shock protein 70 (HSP70). Furthermore, the proliferation of 3T3-L1 preadipocytes were significantly inhibited after HS treatment for 2 days. A large number of accumulated lipid droplets were observed under the microscope after HS treatment for 8 days. Notably, the result of oil red O staining showed that the number of lipid droplets increased significantly and the differentiation ability of the cells was enhanced after HS. Moreover, after 2 and 8 d of differentiation, HS increased the transcription levels of fat synthesis genes including peroxisome proliferators activated receptor γ (PPARγ), fatty acid binding protein 2 (AP2), fatty acid synthase (FAS) and CCAAT enhancer binding protein α (CEBPα) genes, while decreasing the transcription levels of lipid decomposition genes including ATGL and HSL genes. In addition, HS reduced the expression of AMPK and PGC-1α, as well as the dephosphorylation of AMPK. 5-Aminoimidazole-4-carboxamide ribonucleotide (AICAR) can eliminate HS induced lipogenesis by activating AMPK. These results indicated that HS inhibited the proliferation of 3T3-L1 preadipocytes and promoted lipid accumulation by inhibiting the AMPK-PGC-1α signaling pathway in 3T3-L1 preadipocytes. This work lays a theoretical foundation for improving the effect of HS on meat quality of livestock and provides a new direction for the prevention of obesity caused by HS.

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Acknowledgments

This work was supported by the grants from National Natural Science Foundation of China (31760672 and 31460606).

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All experimental procedures were approved by the Institutional Animal Care and Welfare Committee of Guangxi University (Nanning, China).

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Correspondence to Qinyang Jiang.

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The authors have no competing interests to declare.

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Huang, Y., Xie, H., Pan, P. et al. Heat stress promotes lipid accumulation by inhibiting the AMPK-PGC-1α signaling pathway in 3T3-L1 preadipocytes. Cell Stress and Chaperones 26, 563–574 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12192-021-01201-9

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s12192-021-01201-9

Keywords

  • Heat stress
  • 3T3-L1 preadipocyte
  • Proliferation
  • Differentiation
  • AMPK
  • PGC-1α