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Journal of hepatology

Sab (Sh3bp5) dependence of JNK mediated inhibition of mitochondrial respiration in palmitic acid induced hepatocyte lipotoxicity.


PMID 25666017

Abstract

Sustained c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) activation by saturated fatty acids plays a role in lipotoxicity and the pathogenesis of non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). We have reported that the interaction of JNK with mitochondrial Sab leads to inhibition of respiration, increased reactive oxygen species (ROS), cell death and hepatotoxicity. We tested whether this pathway underlies palmitic acid (PA)-induced lipotoxicity in hepatocytes. Primary mouse hepatocytes (PMH) from adeno-shlacZ or adeno-shSab treated mice and HuH7 cells were used. In PMH, PA dose-dependently up to 1mM stimulated oxygen consumption rate (OCR) due to mitochondrial β-oxidation. At ⩾1.5mM, PA gradually reduced OCR, followed by cell death. Inhibition of JNK, caspases or treatment with antioxidant butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA) protected PMH against cell death. Sab knockdown or a membrane permeable Sab blocking peptide prevented PA-induced mitochondrial impairment, but inhibited only the late phase of both JNK activation (beyond 4h) and cell death. In PMH, PA increased p-PERK and its downstream target CHOP, but failed to activate the IRE-1α arm of the UPR. However, Sab silencing did not affect PA-induced PERK activation. Conversely, specific inhibition of PERK prevented JNK activation and cell death, indicating a major role upstream of JNK activation. The effect of p-JNK on mitochondria plays a key role in PA-mediated lipotoxicity. The interplay of p-JNK with mitochondrial Sab leads to impaired respiration, ROS production, sustained JNK activation, and apoptosis.