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Free access

Julika Lietzow, Janine Golchert, Georg Homuth, Uwe Völker, Wenke Jonas, and Josef Köhrle

The endogenous thyroid hormone (TH) metabolite 3,5-diiodo-l-thyronine (3,5-T2) acts as a metabolically active substance affecting whole-body energy metabolism and hepatic lipid handling in a desirable manner. Considering possible adverse effects regarding thyromimetic action of 3,5-T2 treatment in rodents, the current literature remains largely controversial. To obtain further insights into molecular mechanisms and to identify novel target genes of 3,5-T2 in liver, we performed a microarray-based liver tissue transcriptome analysis of male lean and diet-induced obese euthyroid mice treated for 4 weeks with a dose of 2.5 µg/g bw 3,5-T2. Our results revealed that 3,5-T2 modulates the expression of genes encoding Phase I and Phase II enzymes as well as Phase III transporters, which play central roles in metabolism and detoxification of xenobiotics. Additionally, 3,5-T2 changes the expression of TH responsive genes, suggesting a thyromimetic action of 3,5-T2 in mouse liver. Interestingly, 3,5-T2 in obese but not in lean mice influences the expression of genes relevant for cholesterol and steroid biosynthesis, suggesting a novel role of 3,5-T2 in steroid metabolism of obese mice. We concluded that treatment with 3,5-T2 in lean and diet-induced obese male mice alters the expression of genes encoding hepatic xenobiotic-metabolizing enzymes that play a substantial role in catabolism and inactivation of xenobiotics and TH and are also involved in hepatic steroid and lipid metabolism. The administration of this high dose of 3,5-T2 might exert adverse hepatic effects. Accordingly, the conceivable use of 3,5-T2 as pharmacological hypolipidemic agent should be considered with caution.

Open access

Robin Haring, Henri Wallaschofski, Alexander Teumer, Heyo Kroemer, Angela E Taylor, Cedric H L Shackleton, Matthias Nauck, Uwe Völker, Georg Homuth, and Wiebke Arlt

DHEA is the major precursor of human sex steroid synthesis and is inactivated via sulfonation to DHEAS. A previous genome-wide association study related the single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) rs2637125, located near the coding region of DHEA sulfotransferase, SULT2A1, to serum DHEAS concentrations. However, the functional relevance of this SNP with regard to DHEA sulfonation is unknown. Using data from 3300 participants of the population-based cohort Study of Health in Pomerania, we identified 43 individuals being homozygote for the minor allele of the SNP rs2637125 (AA) and selected two sex- and age-matched individuals with AG and GG genotype (n=172) respectively. Steroid analysis including measurement of serum DHEA and DHEAS was carried out by liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry, employing steroid oxime analysis for enhancing the sensitivity of DHEA detection. We applied quantile regression models to compare median hormone levels across SULT2A1 genotypes. Median comparisons by SULT2A1 genotype (AA vs AG and GG genotypes respectively) showed no differences in the considered hormones including DHEAS, DHEA, androstenedione, as well as cortisol and cortisone concentrations. SULT2A1 genotype also had no effect on the DHEA/DHEAS ratio. Sex-stratified analyses, as well as alternative use of the SULT2A1 SNP rs182420, yielded similar negative results. Genetic variants of SULT2A1 do not appear to have an effect on individual DHEA and DHEAS concentrations or the DHEA/DHEAS ratio as a marker of DHEA sulfonation capacity.

Restricted access

Vaishnavi Venugopalan, Maren Rehders, Jonas Weber, Lisa Rodermund, Alaa Al-Hashimi, Tonia Bargmann, Janine Golchert, Vivien Reinecke, Georg Homuth, Uwe Völker, Francois Verrey, Janine Kirstein, Heike Heuer, Ulrich Schweizer, Doreen Braun, Eva K Wirth, and Klaudia Brix

Proteolytic cleavage of thyroglobulin (Tg) for thyroid hormone (TH) liberation is followed by TH release from thyroid follicles into the circulation, enabled by TH transporters. The existence of a functional link between Tg-processing cathepsin proteases and TH transporters has been shown to be independent of the hypothalamus–pituitary–thyroid axis. Thus, lack of cathepsin K, combined with genetic defects in the TH transporters Mct8 and Mct10, that is the Ctsk−/−/Mct8−/y/Mct10−/− genotype, results in persistent Tg proteolysis due to autophagy induction. Because amino acid transport by L-type amino acid transporter 2 (Lat2) has been described to regulate autophagy, we asked whether Lat2 availability is affected in Ctsk−/−/Mct8−/y/Mct10−/− thyroid glands. Our data revealed that while mRNA amounts and subcellular localization of Lat2 remained unaltered in thyroid tissue of Ctsk−/−/Mct8−/y/Mct10−/− mice in comparison to WT controls, the Lat2 protein amounts were significantly reduced. These data suggest a direct link between Lat2 function and autophagy induction in Ctsk−/−/Mct8−/y/Mct10−/− mice. Indeed, thyroid tissue of Lat2−/− mice showed enhanced endo-lysosomal cathepsin activities, increased autophagosome formation, and enhanced autophagic flux. Collectively, these results suggest a mechanistic link between insufficient Lat2 protein function and autophagy induction in the thyroid gland of male mice.