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Biochim Biophys Acta. 2007 Aug;1771(8):1094-107. Epub 2007 Mar 16.

Molecular basis of selective PPARgamma modulation for the treatment of Type 2 diabetes.

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  • 1Friedrich Miescher Institut, WRO 1066.0.52, Maulbeerstrasse 66, 4058 Basel, Switzerland. laurent.gelman@fmi.ch


Peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPARs) (alpha, beta/delta and gamma) are lipid sensors capable of adapting gene expression to integrate various lipid signals. As such, PPARs are also very important pharmaceutical targets, and specific synthetic ligands exist for the different isotypes and are either currently used or hold promises in the treatment of major metabolic disorders. In particular, compounds of the class of the thiazolinediones (TZDs) are PPARgamma agonists and potent insulin-sensitizers. The specific but still broad expression patterns of PPARgamma, as well as its implication in numerous pathways, constitutes also a disadvantage regarding drug administration, since this potentially increases the chance to generate side-effects through the activation of the receptor in tissues or cells not affected by the disease. Actually, numerous side effects associated with the administration of TZDs have been reported. Today, a new generation of PPARgamma modulators is being actively developed to activate the receptor more specifically, in a cell and time-dependent manner, in order to induce a specific subset of target genes only and modulate a restricted number of metabolic pathways. We will discuss here why and how the development of such selective PPARgamma modulators is possible, and summarize the results obtained with the published molecules.

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