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OBJECTIVE - Chronic kidney disease (CKD) amplifies atherosclerosis, which involves renin-angiotensin system (RAS) regulation of macrophages. RAS influences peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-γ (PPARγ), a modulator of atherogenic functions of macrophages, however, little is known about its effects in CKD. We examined the impact of combined therapy with a PPARγ agonist and angiotensin receptor blocker on atherogenesis in a murine uninephrectomy model.
METHODS - Apolipoprotein E knockout mice underwent uninephrectomy (UNx) and treatment with pioglitazone (UNx + Pio), losartan (UNx + Los), or both (UNx + Pio/Los) for 10 weeks. Extent and characteristics of atherosclerotic lesions and macrophage phenotypes were assessed; RAW264.7 and primary peritoneal mouse cells were used to examine pioglitazone and losartan effects on macrophage phenotype and inflammatory response.
RESULTS - UNx significantly increased atherosclerosis. Pioglitazone and losartan each significantly reduced the atherosclerotic burden by 29.6% and 33.5%, respectively; although the benefit was dramatically augmented by combination treatment which lessened atherosclerosis by 55.7%. Assessment of plaques revealed significantly greater macrophage area in UNx + Pio/Los (80.7 ± 11.4% vs. 50.3 ± 4.2% in UNx + Pio and 57.2 ± 6.5% in UNx + Los) with more apoptotic cells. The expanded macrophage-rich lesions of UNx + Pio/Los had more alternatively activated, Ym-1 and arginine 1-positive M2 phenotypes (Ym-1: 33.6 ± 8.2%, p < 0.05 vs. 12.0 ± 1.1% in UNx; arginase 1: 27.8 ± 0.9%, p < 0.05 vs. 11.8 ± 1.3% in UNx). In vitro, pioglitazone alone and together with losartan was more effective than losartan alone in dampening lipopolysaccharide-induced cytokine production, suppressing M1 phenotypic change while enhancing M2 phenotypic change.
CONCLUSION - Combination of pioglitazone and losartan is more effective in reducing renal injury-induced atherosclerosis than either treatment alone. This benefit reflects mitigation in macrophage cytokine production, enhanced apoptosis, and a shift toward an anti-inflammatory phenotype.
Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
PPARγ is one of the three isoforms identified for the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARs) and is the receptor for the thiazolidinedione class of anti-diabetic medications including pioglitazone. PPARγ has been long studied for its role in adipogenesis and glucose metabolism, but the discovery of the localization in ventral tegmental area (VTA) neurons opens new vistas for a potential role in the regulation of reward processing and motivated behavior in drug addiction. Here, we demonstrate that activation of PPARγ by pioglitazone reduces the motivation for heroin and attenuates its rewarding properties. These effects are associated with a marked reduction of heroin-induced increase in phosphorylation of DARPP-32 protein in the nucleus accumbens (NAc) and with a marked and selective reduction of acute heroin-induced elevation of extracellular dopamine (DA) levels in the NAc shell, as measured by in vivo microdialysis. Through ex vivo electrophysiology in acute midbrain slices, we also show that stimulation of PPARγ attenuates opioid-induced excitation of VTA DA neurons via reduction of presynaptic GABA release from the rostromedial tegmental nucleus (RMTg). Consistent with this finding, site-specific microinjection of pioglitazone into the RMTg but not into the VTA reduced heroin taking. Our data illustrate that activation of PPARγ may represent a new pharmacotherapeutic option for the treatment of opioid addiction.
OBJECTIVE - To examine the hypothesis that improving insulin sensitivity improves vascular function in rheumatoid arthritis (RA).
METHODS - We performed a 20-week, single center, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled crossover study. Patients with RA (n = 34) with moderate disease activity who were receiving stable disease-modifying antirheumatic drug therapy were randomized to drug sequence, receiving either pioglitazone 45 mg/day or matching placebo for 8 weeks, followed by a 4-week washout period and the alternative treatment for 8 weeks. We measured changes in vascular stiffness (augmentation index and aortic pulse wave velocity [PWV]), endothelial function (reactive hyperemia index), and blood pressure. High-sensitivity C-reactive protein levels and the homeostatic model assessment of insulin resistance were also measured. The treatment effect of pioglitazone on outcomes was analyzed using linear mixed-effects models.
RESULTS - Pioglitazone treatment resulted in a change in augmentation index of -4.7% units (95% confidence interval [95% CI] -7.9, -1.5) (P = 0.004) and in diastolic blood pressure of -3.0 mm Hg (95% CI -5.7, -0.2) (P = 0.03), but did not significantly change aortic PWV (P = 0.33) or reactive hyperemia index (P = 0.46). The improvements in augmentation index and diastolic blood pressure were not mediated by the effect of pioglitazone on insulin resistance or inflammation.
CONCLUSION - Our findings indicate that pioglitazone improves some indices of vascular function, including augmentation index and diastolic blood pressure, in patients with RA. This is not mediated by improved insulin sensitivity.
Copyright © 2014 by the American College of Rheumatology.
BACKGROUND - The prevalence of obesity in older adults is increasing but concerns exist about the effect of weight loss on muscle function. Demonstrating that muscle strength and power are not adversely affected during "intentional" weight loss in older adults is important given the wide-ranging negative health effects of excess adiposity.
METHODS - Participants (N = 88; age = 70.6 ± 3.6 years; body mass index = 32.8 ± 4.5 kg/m(2)) were randomly assigned to one of four intervention groups: pioglitazone or placebo and resistance training (RT) or no RT, while undergoing intentional weight loss via a hypocaloric diet. Outcomes were leg press power and isometric knee extensor strength. Analysis of covariance, controlling for baseline values, compared follow-up means of power and strength according to randomized groups.
RESULTS - Participants lost an average of 6.6% of initial body mass, and significant declines were observed in fat mass, lean body mass, and appendicular lean body mass. Compared with women not randomized to RT, women randomized to RT had significant improvements in leg press power (p < .001) but not in knee extensor strength (p = 0.12). No significant differences between groups in change in power or strength from baseline were detected in men (both p > .25). A significant pioglitazone-by-RT interaction for leg press power was detected in women (p = .006) but not in men (p = .88).
CONCLUSIONS - In older overweight and obese adults, a hypocaloric weight loss intervention led to significant declines in lean body mass and appendicular lean body mass. However, in women assigned to RT, leg power significantly improved following the intervention, and muscle strength or power was not adversely effected in the other groups. Pioglitazone potentiated the effect of RT on muscle power in women but not in men; mechanisms underlying this sex effect remain to be determined.
BACKGROUND - Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma (PPARγ) agonists have beneficial effects on renal structure and function in models of diabetes and chronic kidney diseases. However, the increased incidence of weight gain and edema potentially limits their usefulness. We studied an acute minimal-change disease-like nephrotic syndrome model to assess effects of PPARγ agonist on acute podocyte injury and effects on fluid homeostasis.
METHODS - Acute podocyte injury and nephrotic syndrome were induced by puromycin aminonucleoside (PAN) injection in rats.
RESULTS - PPARγ agonist, given at the time or after, but not before PAN, reduced proteinuria, restored synaptopodin, decreased desmin and trended to improve foot process effacement. There was no significant difference in glomerular filtration, effective circulating volume, blood pressure or fractional sodium excretion. PAN-injured podocytes had decreased PPARγ, less nephrin and α-actinin-4, more apoptosis and reduced phosphorylated Akt. In PAN-injured cultured podocytes, PPARγ agonist also reversed abnormalities only when given simultaneously or after injury.
CONCLUSIONS - These results show that PPARγ agonist has protective effects on podocytes in acute nephrotic syndrome without deleterious effects on fluid homeostasis. PPARγ agonist-induced decrease in proteinuria in acute nephrotic syndrome is dependent at least partially on regulation of peroxisome proliferator-response element-sensitive gene expression such as α-actinin-4 and nephrin and the restoration of podocyte structure.
Age-related increases in ectopic fat accumulation are associated with greater risk for metabolic and cardiovascular diseases, and physical disability. Reducing skeletal muscle fat and preserving lean tissue are associated with improved physical function in older adults. PPARγ-agonist treatment decreases abdominal visceral adipose tissue (VAT) and resistance training preserves lean tissue, but their effect on ectopic fat depots in nondiabetic overweight adults is unclear. We examined the influence of pioglitazone and resistance training on body composition in older (65-79 years) nondiabetic overweight/obese men (n = 48, BMI = 32.3 ± 3.8 kg/m(2)) and women (n = 40, BMI = 33.3 ± 4.9 kg/m(2)) during weight loss. All participants underwent a 16-week hypocaloric weight-loss program and were randomized to receive pioglitazone (30 mg/day) or no pioglitazone with or without resistance training, following a 2 × 2 factorial design. Regional body composition was measured at baseline and follow-up using computed tomography (CT). Lean mass was measured using dual X-ray absorptiometry. Men lost 6.6% and women lost 6.5% of initial body mass. The percent of fat loss varied across individual compartments. Men who were given pioglitazone lost more visceral abdominal fat than men who were not given pioglitazone (-1,160 vs. -647 cm(3), P = 0.007). Women who were given pioglitazone lost less thigh subcutaneous fat (-104 vs. -298 cm(3), P = 0.002). Pioglitazone did not affect any other outcomes. Resistance training diminished thigh muscle loss in men and women (resistance training vs. no resistance training men: -43 vs. -88 cm(3), P = 0.005; women: -34 vs. -59 cm(3), P = 0.04). In overweight/obese older men undergoing weight loss, pioglitazone increased visceral fat loss and resistance training reduced skeletal muscle loss. Additional studies are needed to clarify the observed gender differences and evaluate how these changes in body composition influence functional status.
OBJECTIVE - To examine the impact of a recent surgery on development of endometriosis-related adhesions in a chimeric model and to determine the therapeutic efficacy of pioglitazone (PIO).
DESIGN - Human endometrial biopsies were maintained in E(2) with or without PIO for 24 h before intraperitoneal injection into immunocompromised mice also treated with or without PIO at multiple time points after peritoneal surgery. The presence and extent of adhesions were examined in animals relative to the initial establishment of experimental endometriosis.
SETTING - Medical school research center.
PATIENT(S) - Endometrial biopsies for experimental studies were provided by normally cycling women without a medical history indicative of endometriosis or adhesions.
INTERVENTION(S) - None.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE(S) - Examination of the development of endometriosis-related adhesions in an experimental model.
RESULT(S) - Without therapeutic intervention, injection of E(2)-treated human endometrial tissue into mice near the time of peritoneal surgery resulted in multiple adhesions and extensive endometriotic-like disease. In contrast, PIO treatment reduced adhesive disease and experimental endometriosis related to surgical injury.
CONCLUSION(S) - The presence of human endometrial tissue fragments in the peritoneal cavity of mice with a recent surgical injury promoted development of both adhesive disease and experimental endometriosis. Targeting inflammation and angiogenesis with PIO therapy limited the development of postsurgical adhesions associated with ectopic endometrial growth.
Copyright © 2011 American Society for Reproductive Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Stroke is a leading cause of death and disability but has limited therapeutic options. Thiazolidinediones (TZDs), agonists for the nuclear receptor, peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor (PPAR)γ, reduce infarct volume and improve neurologic function following transient middle cerebral artery occlusion (MCAO) in rats. Translation of these findings into clinical therapy will require careful assessment of dosing paradigms and effective time windows for treatment. Understanding the mechanisms by which TZDs protect the brain provides insight into how time windows for neuroprotection might be extended. We find that two TZDs, pioglitazone and rosiglitazone, significantly reduce infarct volume at doses similar to those used clinically (1 mg/kg for pioglitazone and 0.1 mg/kg for rosiglitazone). We also find that pioglitazone reduces infarction volume in a transient, but not a permanent MCAO model suggesting that reperfusion plays an important role in TZD mediated neuroprotection. Since PPARγ agonists reduce inflammation and oxidative stress, both of which are exacerbated by reperfusion, we hypothesized that TZDs would be most effective if administered prior to reperfusion. We administered TZDs 3 h after MCAO and found that infarction volume and neurologic function are significantly improved in animals reperfused at 3 h and 15 min (after TZD treatment), but not in animals reperfused at 2 h (before TZD treatment) when assessed either 24 h or 3 weeks after MCAO. While TZDs reduce intercellular adhesion molecule (ICAM) expression to a similar extent regardless of the time of reperfusion, leukocyte entry into brain parenchyma is more dramatically reduced when reperfusion is delayed until after drug treatment. The finding that delaying reperfusion until after TZD treatment is beneficial despite a longer period of ischemia, is dramatic given the widely held view that duration of ischemia is the most important determinate of injury.
Copyright © 2010 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-gamma (PPAR-gamma) agonists not only improve metabolic abnormalities of diabetes and consequent diabetic nephropathy, but they also protect against nondiabetic chronic kidney disease in experimental models. Here, we found that the PPAR-gamma agonist pioglitazone protected against renal injury in aging; it reduced proteinuria, improved GFR, decreased sclerosis, and alleviated cell senescence. Increased local expression of PPAR-gamma paralleled these changes. Underlying mechanisms included increased expression of klotho, decreased systemic and renal oxidative stress, and decreased mitochondrial injury. Pioglitazone also regulated p66(Shc) phosphorylation, which integrates many signaling pathways that affect mitochondrial function and longevity, by reducing protein kinase C-beta. These results suggest that PPAR-gamma agonists may benefit aging-related renal injury by improving mitochondrial function.