Send to

Choose Destination
Cell Physiol Biochem. 2013;32(5):1509-16. doi: 10.1159/000356588. Epub 2013 Nov 29.

Effect of non-esterified fatty acids on fatty acid metabolism-related genes in calf hepatocytes cultured in vitro.

Author information

College of Animal Science and Veterinary Medicine, Shenyang Agricultural University, Shenyang, China.



NEFA plays numerous roles in the metabolism of glucose, lipids, and proteins. A number of experimental studies have shown that NEFA may have an important role in fatty acid metabolism in the liver, especially in dairy cows that experience negative energy balance (NEB) during early lactation.


In this study, using fluorescent quantitative RT-PCR, ELISA, and primary hepatocytes cultured in vitro, we examined the effect of NEFA (0, 0.2, 0.4, 0.8, 1.6, and 3.2 mmol/L) on fatty acid metabolism by monitoring the mRNA and protein expression of the following key enzymes: long chain acyl-CoA synthetase (ACSL), carnitine palmitoyltransferase IA (CPT IA), long chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase (ACADL), and acetyl-CoA carboxylase (ACC).


The mRNA and protein expression levels of ACSL and ACADL markedly increased as the concentration of NEFA in the media was increased. The mRNA and protein expression levels of CPT IA were enhanced significantly when the NEFA concentrations increased from 0 to 1.6 mmol/L and decreased significantly when the NEFA concentrations increased from 1.6 to 3.2 mmol/L. The mRNA and protein expression of ACC decreased gradually with increasing concentrations of NEFA.


These findings indicate that increased NEFA significantly promote the activation and β-oxidation of fatty acids, but very high NEFA concentrations may inhibit the translocation of fatty acids into mitochondria of hepatocytes. This may explain the development of ketosis or liver lipidosis in dairy cows. CPT IA might be the key control enzyme of the fatty acid oxidation process in hepatocytes.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for S. Karger AG, Basel, Switzerland
Loading ...
Support Center