Effects of glucagon and insulin on lipolysis and ketogenesis in sheep. (1/964)

The hepatic and portal productions of acetoacetate and beta-hydroxybutyrate and lipolysis were studied in normal and insulin-controlled alloxan-diabetic sheep. Since hyperinsulinemia is associated with glucagon administration, the latter group of sheep were used to maintain constant plasma insulin levels. After control values were obtained glucagon was infused intraportally at 90 mug/hr for two hours. The ketone body production by portal drained viscera was not significantly affected by glucagon. In alloxanized sheep, glucagon significantly (P less than 0.01) increased net hepatic production of acetoacetate (from -0.54 +/- 0.08 to 0.46 +/- 0.07 g/hr). Lipolysis also increased. However, in the normal sheep, hyperinsulinemia prevented any stimulatory effect of glucagon on hepatic ketogenesis and lipolysis. Therefore, while glucagon appears capable of stimulating ketogenesis andlipolysis, these effects are readily suppressed by insulin.  (+info)

The role of gamma-hydroxybutyric acid in the treatment of alcoholism: from animal to clinical studies. (2/964)

Since its discovery nearly 40 years ago, gamma-hydroxybutyric acid (GHB) has attracted several waves of scientific interest due to new developments in the knowledge of its mechanisms of action and ideas for its potential use in clinical practice. Its effects have been claimed to treat different psychiatric conditions, but over time its use has become limited to a few specific situations (e.g. sedating patients in non-painful surgical procedures and narcolepsy). New interest in the drug derives from its potential use in the treatment of alcoholism. Recent studies demonstrated a marked effect of the substance in suppressing ethanol (ETOH) withdrawal symptoms and in reducing craving for alcohol, compared to other available drugs. However, GHB has to be given under very careful supervision because of its side-effects, including the risk of abuse and dependence and possible interference with the metabolic pathways of endogenous GHB and ETOH. This short review discusses these and related issues and we hope that it will stimulate further interest in GHB.  (+info)

Effects of vanadium complexes with organic ligands on glucose metabolism: a comparison study in diabetic rats. (3/964)

1. Vanadium compounds can mimic actions of insulin through alternative signalling pathways. The effects of three organic vanadium compounds were studied in non-ketotic, streptozotocin-diabetic rats: vanadyl acetylacetonate (VAc), vanadyl 3-ethylacetylacetonate (VEt), and bis(maltolato)oxovanadium (VM). A simple inorganic vanadium salt, vanadyl sulphate (VS) was also studied. 2. Oral administration of the three organic vanadium compounds (125 mg vanadium element 1(-1) in drinking fluids) for up to 3 months induced a faster and larger fall in glycemia (VAc being the most potent) than VS. Glucosuria and tolerance to a glucose load were improved accordingly. 3. Activities and mRNA levels of key glycolytic enzymes (glucokinase and L-type pyruvate kinase) which are suppressed in the diabetic liver, were restored by vanadium treatment. The organic forms showed greater efficacy than VS, especially VAc. 4. VAc rats exhibited the highest levels of plasma or tissue vanadium, most likely due to a greater intestinal absorption. However, VAc retained its potency when given as a single i.p. injection to diabetic rats. Moreover, there was no relationship between plasma or tissue vanadium levels and any parameters of glucose homeostasis and hepatic glucose metabolism. Thus, these data suggest that differences in potency between compounds are due to differences in their insulin-like properties. 5. There was no marked toxicity observed on hepatic or renal function. However, diarrhoea occurred in 50% of rats chronically treated with VS, but not in those receiving the organic compounds. 6. In conclusion, organic vanadium compounds, in particular VAc, correct the hyperglycemia and impaired hepatic glycolysis of diabetic rats more safely and potently than VS. This is not simply due to improved intestinal absorption, indicating more potent insulin-like properties.  (+info)

Relationship between succinate transport and production of extracellular poly(3-hydroxybutyrate) depolymerase in Pseudomonas lemoignei. (4/964)

The relationship between extracellular poly(3-hydroxybutyrate) (PHB) depolymerase synthesis and the unusual properties of a succinate uptake system was investigated in Pseudomonas lemoignei. Growth on and uptake of succinate were highly pH dependent, with optima at pH 5.6. Above pH 7, growth on and uptake of succinate were strongly reduced with concomitant derepression of PHB depolymerase synthesis. The specific succinate uptake rates were saturable by high concentrations of succinate, and maximal transport rates of 110 nmol/mg of cell protein per min were determined between pH 5.6 and 6. 8. The apparent KS0.5 values increased with increasing pH from 0.2 mM succinate at pH 5.6 to more than 10 mM succinate at pH 7.6. The uptake of [14C]succinate was strongly inhibited by several monocarboxylates. Dicarboxylates also inhibited the uptake of succinate but only at pH values near the dissociation constant of the second carboxylate function (pKa2). We conclude that the succinate carrier is specific for the monocarboxylate forms of various carboxylic acids and is not able to utilize the dicarboxylic forms. The inability to take up succinate2- accounts for the carbon starvation of P. lemoignei observed during growth on succinate at pH values above 7. As a consequence the bacteria produce high levels of extracellular PHB depolymerase activity in an effort to escape carbon starvation by utilization of PHB hydrolysis products.  (+info)

Analyses of a polyhydroxyalkanoic acid granule-associated 16-kilodalton protein and its putative regulator in the pha locus of Paracoccus denitrificans. (5/964)

The polyhydroxyalkanoic acid (PHA) granule-associated 16-kDa protein (GA16 protein) of Paracoccus denitrificans was identified, and its corresponding gene was cloned and analyzed at the molecular level. The N-terminal amino acid sequence of GA16 protein revealed that its structural gene is located downstream from the PHA synthase gene (phaCPd) cloned recently (S. Ueda, T. Yabutani, A. Maehara, and T. Yamane, J. Bacteriol. 178:774-779, 1996). Gene walking around phaCPd revealed two new open reading frames (ORFs) possibly related to PHA synthesis, one of which was the phaPPd gene, encoding GA16 protein, and the other was the phaRPd gene, encoding a protein that is putatively involved in the regulation of the expression of phaPPd. Overproduction of PhaPPd was observed in Escherichia coli carrying phaPPd, but the overproduction was not observed in the presence of phaRPd. Coexpression of phaPPd and PHA biosynthesis genes in E. coli caused increases in both the number of poly-(3-hydroxybutyric acid) (PHB) granules and PHB content and caused decreases in both the size of the granules and the molecular weight of PHB. GA16 protein was considered a phasin protein. The phaRPd gene had significant similarities to stdC, a possible transcriptional factor of Comamonas testosteroni, as well as to other ORFs of unknown function previously found in other PHA-synthetic bacteria.  (+info)

Carbon and ammonia metabolism of Spirillum lipoferum. (6/964)

Intact cells and extracts from Spirillum lipoferum rapidly oxidized malate, succinate, lactate, and pyruvate. Glucose, galactose, fructose, acetate, and citrate did not increase the rate of O2 uptake by cells above the endogenous rate. Cells grown on NH+/4 oxidized the various substrates at about the same rate as did cells grown on N2. Added oxidized nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide generally enhanced O2 uptake by extracts supplied organic acids, whereas oxidized nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate had little effect. Nitrogenase synthesis repressed by growth of cells in the presence of NH+/4 was derepressed by methionine sulfoximine or methionine sulfone. The total glutamine synthetase activity from N2-grown cells was about eight times that from NH+/4-grown S. lipoferum; the response of glutamate dehydrogenase was the opposite. The total glutamate synthetase activity from N2-grown S. lipoferum was 1.4 to 2.6 times that from NH+/4-grown cells. The levels of poly-beta-hydroxybutyrate and beta-hydroxybutyrate dehydrogenase were elevated in cells grown on N2 as compared with those grown on NH+/4. Cell-free extracts capable of reducing C2H2 have been prepared; both Mg2+ and Mn2+ are required for good activity.  (+info)

Comparison of metabolism of free fatty acid by isolated perfused livers from male and female rats. (7/964)

Livers from normal, fed male and female rats were perfused with different amounts of [1-14C]oleate under steady state conditions, and the rates of uptake and utilization of free fatty acid (FFA) were measured. The uptake of FFA by livers from either male or female rats was proportional to the concentration of FFA in the medium. The rate of uptake of FFA, per g of liver, by livers from female rats exceeded that of the males for the same amount of FFA infused. The incorporation by the liver of exogenous oleic acid into triglyceride, phospholipid, and oxidation products was proportional to the uptake of FFA. Livers from female rats incorporated more oleate into triglyceride (TG) and less into phospholipid (PL) and oxidation products than did livers from male animals. Livers from female rats secreted more TG than did livers from male animals when infused with equal quantities of oleate. The incorporation of endogenous fatty acid into TG of the perfusate was inhibite) by exogenous oleate. At low concentrations of perfusate FFA, however, endogenous fatty acids contributed substantially to the increased output of TG by livers from female animals. Production of 14CO2 and radioactive ketone bodies increased with increasing uptake of FFA. The partition of oleate between oxidative pathways (CO2 production and ketogenesis) was modified by the availability of the fatty acid substrate with livers from either sex. The percent incorporation of radioactivity into CO2 reached a maximum, whereas incorporation into ketone bodies continued to increase. The output of ketone bodies was dependent on the uptake of FFA, and output by livers from female animals was less than by livers from male rats. The increase in rate of ketogenesis was dependent on the influx of exogenous FFA, while ketogenesis from endogenous sources remained relatively stable. The output of glucose by the liver increased with the uptake of FFA, but no difference due to sex was observed. The output of urea by livers from male rats was unaffected by oleate, while the output of urea by livers from females decreased as the uptake of FFA increased. A major conclusion to be derived from this work is that oleate is not metabolized identically by livers from the two sexes, but rather, per gram of liver, livers from female rats take up and esterify more fatty acid to TG and oxidize less than do livers from male animals; livers from female animals synthesize and secrete more triglyceride than do livers from male animals when provided with equal quantities of free fatty acid.  (+info)

Removal of endotoxin during purification of poly(3-hydroxybutyrate) from gram-negative bacteria. (8/964)

Poly(3-hydroxybutyrate) (PHB) was produced by cultivating several gram-negative bacteria, including Ralstonia eutropha, Alcaligenes latus, and recombinant Escherichia coli. PHB was recovered from these bacteria by two different methods, and the endotoxin levels were determined. When PHB was recovered by the chloroform extraction method, the endotoxin level was less than 10 endotoxin units (EU) per g of PHB irrespective of the bacterial strains employed and the PHB content in the cell. The NaOH digestion method, which was particularly effective for the recovery of PHB from recombinant E. coli, was also examined for endotoxin removal. The endotoxin level present in PHB recovered by 0.2 N NaOH digestion for 1 h at 30 degrees C was higher than 10(4) EU/g of PHB. Increasing the digestion time or NaOH concentration reduced the endotoxin level to less than 1 EU/g of PHB. It was concluded that PHB with a low endotoxin level, which can be used for various biomedical applications, could be produced by chloroform extraction. Furthermore, PHB with a much lower endotoxin level could be produced from recombinant E. coli by simple NaOH digestion.  (+info)