Metabolism: clinical and experimental

Thiazolidinediones attenuate lipolysis and ameliorate dexamethasone-induced insulin resistance.

PMID 25825274


Elevated levels of circulating free fatty acids induce insulin resistance and often occur in obese and diabetic conditions. One pharmacological basis for the antidiabetic effects of thiazolidinediones (TZDs) is that TZDs reduce levels of circulating FFAs by accelerating their uptake and reesterification from plasma into adipocytes. Here, we investigated whether TZDs affect adipose lipolysis, a process controlling triglyceride hydrolysis and FFA efflux to the bloodstream. The effects of TZDs on lipolysis were investigated in primary rat adipocytes in vitro and in rats in vivo. In rat primary adipocytes, the TZDs pioglitazone, rosiglitazone and troglitazone inhibited the lipolytic reaction dose- and time-dependently and in a post-receptor pathway by decreasing cAMP level and total lipase activity. TZDs increased the phosphorylation of Akt/protein kinase B, an action required for activating cyclic-nucleotide phosphodiesterase 3B, a major enzyme responsible for cAMP hydrolysis in adipocytes. Furthermore, rosiglitazone inhibited the lipolytic action in dexamethasone-stimulated adipocytes, thereby preventing the increased level of circulating FFAs, and ameliorated insulin resistance in vivo in dexamethasone-treated rats. TZDs may attenuate lipolysis and FFA efflux by activating Akt signaling to decrease cAMP level and hence reduce lipase activity in adipocytes. Inhibiting lipolysis and FFA efflux with TZDs could be a pharmacological basis by which TZDs antagonize diabetes, particularly in patients with hypercortisolemia or glucocorticoid challenge.