Evaluating the Role of LPIN1 Variation in Insulin Resistance, Body Weight, and Human Lipodystrophy in U.K. Populations

  1. Katherine A. Fawcett1,
  2. Neil Grimsey2,
  3. Ruth J.F. Loos3,
  4. Eleanor Wheeler1,
  5. Allan Daly1,
  6. Maria Soos4,
  7. Robert Semple4,
  8. Holly Syddall5,
  9. Cyrus Cooper5,
  10. Symeon Siniossoglou2,
  11. Stephen O'Rahilly4,
  12. Nicholas J. Wareham3 and
  13. Inês Barroso1
  1. 1Metabolic Disease Group, Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, Wellcome Trust Genome Campus, Hinxton, Cambridgeshire, U.K
  2. 2Cambridge Institute for Medical Research, University of Cambridge, Wellcome Trust, Cambridge, U.K
  3. 3Medical Research Council Epidemiology Unit, Institute of Metabolic Science, Cambridge, U.K
  4. 4Department of Clinical Biochemistry, Addenbrooke's Hospital, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, U.K
  5. 5Medical Research Council Epidemiology Resource Centre, University of Southampton, Southampton, U.K
  1. Corresponding author: Inês Barroso, ib1{at}sanger.ac.uk


OBJECTIVE— Loss of lipin 1 activity causes lipodystrophy and insulin resistance in the fld mouse, and LPIN1 expression and common genetic variation were recently suggested to influence adiposity and insulin sensitivity in humans. We aimed to conduct a comprehensive association study to clarify the influence of common LPIN1 variation on adiposity and insulin sensitivity in U.K. populations and to examine the role of LPIN1 mutations in insulin resistance syndromes.

RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHOD— Twenty-two single nucleotide polymorphisms tagging common LPIN1 variation were genotyped in Medical Research Council (MRC) Ely (n = 1,709) and Hertfordshire (n = 2,901) population-based cohorts. LPIN1 exons, exon/intron boundaries, and 3′ untranslated region were sequenced in 158 patients with idiopathic severe insulin resistance (including 23 lipodystrophic patients) and 48 control subjects.

RESULTS— We found no association between LPIN1 single nucleotide polymorphisms and fasting insulin but report a nominal association between rs13412852 and BMI (P = 0.042) in a meta-analysis of 8,504 samples from in-house and publicly available studies. Three rare nonsynonymous variants (A353T, R552K, and G582R) were detected in severely insulin-resistant patients. However, these did not cosegregate with disease in affected families, and Lipin1 protein expression and phosphorylation in patients with variants were indistinguishable from those in control subjects.

CONCLUSIONS— Our data do not support a major effect of common LPIN1 variation on metabolic traits and suggest that mutations in LPIN1 are not a common cause of lipodystrophy in humans. The nominal associations with BMI and other metabolic traits in U.K. cohorts require replication in larger cohorts.


  • Published ahead of print at http://diabetes.diabetesjournals.org on 30 June 2008.

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    • Accepted June 17, 2008.
    • Received March 27, 2008.
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  1. Diabetes vol. 57 no. 9 2527-2533
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