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FASEB J. 2002 Nov;16(13):1808-10. Epub 2002 Sep 5.

1alpha,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 inhibits uncoupling protein 2 expression in human adipocytes.

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  • 1University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee 37996, USA.


We recently demonstrated that suppressing 1alpha,25-(OH)2-D3 by increasing dietary calcium decreases adipocyte intracellular Ca2+ ([Ca2+]i), stimulates lipolysis, and inhibits lipogenesis. High calcium diets also increase core temperature and white adipose tissue uncoupling protein 2 (UCP2) expression in aP2-agouti transgenic mice. Accordingly, we have evaluated the role of 1alpha,25-(OH)2-D3 in regulating human adipocyte UCP2 expression. Treatment of human adipocytes for 48 h with 1 nM 1alpha,25-(OH)2-D3 inhibited UCP2 mRNA and protein levels by 50% (P<0.002) and completely blocked isoproterenol- or fatty acid-stimulated two- to threefold increases in UCP2 expression. However, a specific agonist for the membrane vitamin D receptor (mVDR), 1alpha,25-dihydroxylumisterol3, was unable to inhibit basal, isoproterenol-stimulated, or fatty acid-stimulated UCP2 expression, whereas a specific mVDR antagonist,1beta,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3, was unable to prevent the 1alpha,25-(OH)2-D3 inhibition of UCP2 expression. In contrast, nuclear vitamin D receptor (nVDR) knockout via antisense oligodeoxynucleotide (ODN) prevented the inhibitory effect of 1alpha,25-(OH)2-D3 on adipocyte UCP2 expression and protein levels. These data indicate that 1a,25-(OH)2-D3 exerts an inhibitory effect on adipocyte UCP2 expression via the nVDR. Thus, suppression of 1alpha,25-(OH)2-D3 and consequent up-regulation of UCP2 may contribute to our previous observation of increased thermogenesis in mice fed with high calcium diets.

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