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Physiol Genomics. 2012 Mar 19;44(6):345-51. doi: 10.1152/physiolgenomics.00087.2011. Epub 2012 Jan 24.

Characterization of Bglu3, a mouse fasting glucose locus, and identification of Apcs as an underlying candidate gene.

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1
Department of Radiology and Medical Imaging, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, USA.

Abstract

Bglu3 is a quantitative trait locus for fasting glucose on distal chromosome 1 identified in an intercross between C57BL/6 (B6) and C3H/HeJ (C3H) apolipoprotein E-deficient (apoE(-/-)) mice. This locus was subsequently replicated in two separate mouse intercrosses. The objective of this study was to characterize Bglu3 through construction and analysis of a congenic strain and identify underlying candidate genes. Congenic mice were constructed by introgressing a genomic region harboring Bglu3 from C3H.apoE(-/-) into B6.apoE(-/-) mice. Mice were started with a Western diet at 6 wk of age and maintained on the diet for 12 wk. Gene expression in the liver was analyzed by microarrays. Congenic mice had significantly higher fasting glucose levels and developed more significant glucose intolerance compared with B6.apoE(-/-) mice on the Western diet. Microarray analysis revealed 336 genes to be differentially expressed in the liver of congenic mice. Further pathway analysis suggested a role for acute phase response signaling in regulating glucose intolerance. Apcs, encoding an acute phase response protein serum amyloid P (SAP), is located underneath the linkage peak of Bglu3. Multiple single nucleotide polymorphisms between B6 and C3H mice were detected within and surrounding Apcs. Apcs expression in the liver was significantly higher in congenic and C3H mice compared with B6 mice. The Western diet consumption led to a gradual rise in plasma SAP levels, which was accompanied by rising fasting glucose in both B6 and C3H apoE(-/-) mice. Expression of C3H Apcs in B6.apoE(-/-) mice aggravated glucose intolerance. Bglu3 is confirmed to be a locus affecting diabetes susceptibility, and Apcs is a probable candidate gene.

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