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A structure-function approach identifies L-PGDS as a mediator responsible for glucocorticoid-induced leptin expression in adipocytes.

Biochemical pharmacology

Authors: Yen-Nan Yeh, Kun-Yi Hsin, Andreas Zimmer, Lih-Yuan Lin, Ming-Shiu Hung

Leptin is an adipokine predominantly secreted by adipocytes and has many physiological roles, including in energy homeostasis. We identified that AM630, a cannabinoid receptor 2 (CB2) antagonist, down-regulated leptin expression in mature adipocytes differentiated from either stromal vascular fractions isolated from inguinal fat pads of C57BL/6J mice or 3T3-L1 preadipocytes. However, the leptin-suppressive effects of AM630 preserved in CB2-deficient adipocytes indicated the off-target activity of AM630 in leptin expression. Pharmacological and genetic studies, cheminformatics, and docking simulation were applied to identify the potential protein target of AM630 that modulates leptin expression in differentiated primary preadipocytes. Screening of the reported off-targets of AM630 identified a synthetic cannabinoid WIN55212-2 exerting the same function. Target deconvolution and docking simulation suggested that AM630 and WIN55212-2 were both inhibitors of lipocalin-type prostaglandin D2 synthase (L-PGDS). Further studies showed that L-PGDS positively regulates leptin expression. Although glucocorticoid and aldosterone were previously reported to induce expression of both L-PGDS and leptin, our data demonstrated that L-PGDS mediates only glucocorticoid-induced leptin expression in differentiated primary preadipocytes. No effect was observed after aldosterone treatment. This newly discovered glucocorticoid - L-PGDS - leptin pathway may provide insights into current clinical use of glucocorticoid and management of their undesired effects such as obesity.

Copyright © 2019 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

PMID: 31129049

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