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The expression of NAD(P)H:quinone oxidoreductase 1 is high in human adipose tissue, reduced by weight loss, and correlates with adiposity, insulin sensitivity, and markers of liver dysfunction.

Journal article
Authors Jenny Palming
Kajsa Sjöholm
Margareta Jernås
Ted Lystig
Anders Gummesson
Stefano Romeo
Lars Lönn
Malin Lönn
Björn Carlsson
Lena M S Carlsson
Published in The Journal of clinical endocrinology and metabolism
Volume 92
Issue 6
Pages 2346-52
ISSN 0021-972X
Publication year 2007
Published at Institute of Medicine, Department of Molecular and Clinical Medicine
Institute of Clinical Sciences
Pages 2346-52
Language en
Keywords Adipose Tissue, enzymology, Adult, Aged, Biological Markers, Body Weight, physiology, Diet, Reducing, Female, Gene Expression Regulation, Enzymologic, Humans, Insulin Resistance, physiology, Liver, enzymology, Liver Diseases, genetics, metabolism, physiopathology, Male, Middle Aged, NAD(P)H Dehydrogenase (Quinone), genetics, metabolism, Obesity, diet therapy, genetics, metabolism, Oxidative Stress, physiology, Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide, Weight Loss, physiology
Subject categories Physiology, Endocrinology


CONTEXT: We have previously identified nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate:quinone oxidoreductase 1 (NQO1), an enzyme involved in the protection against oxidative stress, as a gene predominantly expressed in human adipocytes. Studies in mice deficient in NQO1 activity suggest that NQO1 may also play an important role in metabolism. OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was to explore the expression and regulation of NQO1 in human adipose tissue (AT) and isolated adipocytes. PATIENTS AND RESULTS: The high expression of NQO1 in adipocytes was verified in human adipocytes and AT by real-time PCR. DNA microarray analysis showed that NQO1 was expressed at higher levels in large compared with small adipocytes, isolated from the same fat biopsy. Furthermore, NQO1 mRNA levels were positively correlated with adipocyte size (n = 7; P < 0.002). During an 18-wk diet regime (n = 24; mean weight loss 27 kg), the NQO1 expression in human sc AT was down-regulated (P < 0.0001), and mRNA levels correlated with body mass index (P = 0.0005), sc, and total abdominal AT areas, as determined by computerized tomography (P < 0.0001, both) and metabolic parameters. NQO1 mRNA levels were also positively correlated with aspartate aminotransferase (P = 0.0028) and alanine aminotransferase (P = 0.0219), markers known to be associated with severity of hepatic steatosis. CONCLUSIONS: NQO1 is highly expressed in human AT, particularly in large adipocytes. AT NQO1 expression is reduced during diet-induced weight loss, and the expression levels positively correlate with adiposity, glucose tolerance, and markers of liver dysfunction. Together, these findings indicate a role for NQO1 in the metabolic complications of human obesity.

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