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Mediators Inflamm. 2013;2013:641851. doi: 10.1155/2013/641851. Epub 2013 May 13.

NAG-1/GDF15 transgenic mouse has less white adipose tissue and a reduced inflammatory response.

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Laboratory of Molecular Carcinogenesis, National Institutes of Environmental Health Sciences, NIH, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709, USA.


NAG-1/GDF15 is a TGF- β superfamily member with poorly characterized biological activity proposed to inhibit inflammatory cytokine production. Transgenic mice expressing human NAG-1/GDF15 (NAG-1 (Tg/Lox) ) are leaner with lower body weight and are resistant to chemically or genetically induced intestinal tumors. Because of the link between obesity, inflammation, and cancer, we examined whether these mice exhibit a reduced response to inflammatory stimuli. The NAG-1 (Tg/Lox) mice had a reduced inflammatory response to LPS based on the serum levels of cytokines KC, IL-6, MCP-1, and TNF α . In contrast to literature reports and our in vivo results, NAG-1 did not inhibit LPS-induced cytokine expression in vitro in RAW264.7 cells, mouse peritoneal macrophages, or mouse liver Kupffer cells, suggesting that NAG-1/GDF15 does not directly inhibit LPS-induced inflammatory cytokine production. However, NAG-1 (Tg/Lox) mice have less white adipose tissue, the major source of inflammatory adipokines including leptin. Basal and LPS-treated serum leptin and mRNA levels in the adipose tissue of NAG-1 (Tg/Lox) mice were lower than those in WT mice. We propose that the reduced white adipose tissue and reduced leptin expression may be responsible, in part, for the reduced inflammatory response to LPS and the decrease in intestinal tumors observed in NAG-1 (Tg/Lox) mice.

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