Rapid and Weight-Independent Improvement of Glucose Tolerance Induced by a Peptide Designed to Elicit Apoptosis in Adipose Tissue Endothelium

  1. Randy J. Seeley4
  1. 1Department of Pharmacology, Korea University College of Medicine, Seoul, Republic of Korea
  2. 2Center for Computational Medicine and Bioinformatics, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan
  3. 3Departments of Pharmacology and Cancer Biology and Medicine, Sarah W. Stedman Nutrition and Metabolism Center, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina
  4. 4Department of Internal Medicine, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio
  5. 5Department of Environmental Health, Division of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University of Cincinnati Medical Center, Cincinnati, Ohio
  6. 6Department of Psychiatry, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio
  1. Corresponding author: Randy J. Seeley, randy.seeley{at}


A peptide designed to induce apoptosis of endothelium in white adipose tissue (WAT) decreases adiposity. The goal of this work is to determine whether targeting of WAT endothelium results in impaired glucose regulation as a result of impaired WAT function. Glucose tolerance tests were performed on days 2 and 3 of treatment with vehicle (HF-V) or proapoptotic peptide (HF-PP) and mice pair-fed to HF-PP (HF-PF) in obese mice on a high-fat diet (HFD). Serum metabolic variables, including lipid profile, adipokines, individual fatty acids, and acylcarnitines, were measured. Microarray analysis was performed in epididymal fat of lean or obese mice treated with vehicle or proapoptotic peptide (PP). PP rapidly and potently improved glucose tolerance of obese mice in a weight- and food intake–independent manner. Serum insulin and triglycerides were decreased in HF-PP relative to HF-V. Levels of fatty acids and acylcarnitines were distinctive in HF-PP compared with HF-V or HF-PF. Microarray analysis in AT revealed that pathways involved in mitochondrial dysfunction, oxidative phosphorylation, and branched-chain amino acid degradation were changed by exposure to HFD and were reversed by PP administration. These studies suggest a novel role of the AT vasculature in glucose homeostasis and lipid metabolism.


  • Received November 14, 2011.
  • Accepted March 18, 2012.

Readers may use this article as long as the work is properly cited, the use is educational and not for profit, and the work is not altered. See for details.

| Table of Contents