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EMBO Rep. 2007 Dec;8(12):1183-9. Epub 2007 Oct 12.

Tripeptidyl peptidase II promotes fat formation in a conserved fashion.

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Department of Developmental Biology, UT Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX 75390-9113, USA.


Tripeptidyl peptidase II (TPPII) is a multifunctional and evolutionarily conserved protease. In the mammalian hypothalamus, TPPII has a proposed anti-satiety role affected by degradation of the satiety hormone cholecystokinin 8. Here, we show that TPPII also regulates the metabolic homoeostasis of Caenorhabditis elegans; TPPII RNA interference (RNAi) decreases worm fat stores. However, this occurs independently of feeding behaviour and seems to be a function within fat-storing tissues. In mammalian cell culture, TPPII stimulates adipogenesis and TPPII RNAi blocks adipogenesis. The pro-adipogenic action of TPPII seems to be independent of protease function, as catalytically inactive TPPII also increases adipogenesis. Mice that were homozygous for an insertion in the Tpp2 locus were embryonic lethal. However, Tpp2 heterozygous mutants were lean compared with wild-type littermates, although food intake was normal. These findings indicate that TPPII has central and peripheral roles in regulating metabolism and that TPPII actions in fat-storing tissues might be an ancient function carried out in a protease-independent manner.

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