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J Cell Physiol. 2019 Jun 26. doi: 10.1002/jcp.29026. [Epub ahead of print]

SCD1 regulates the AMPK/SIRT1 pathway and histone acetylation through changes in adenine nucleotide metabolism in skeletal muscle.

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Department of Biochemistry, Nencki Institute of Experimental Biology of Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw, Poland.
Departments of Biochemistry and Nutritional Sciences, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI, USA.


Stearoyl-CoA desaturase (SCD) is a rate-limiting enzyme that catalyzes the synthesis of monounsaturated fatty acids. It plays an important role in regulating skeletal muscle metabolism. Lack of the SCD1 gene increases the rate of fatty acid β-oxidation through activation of the AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) pathway and the upregulation of genes that are related to fatty acid oxidation. The mechanism of AMPK activation under conditions of SCD1 deficiency has been unclear. In the present study, we found that the ablation/inhibition of SCD1 led to AMPK activation in skeletal muscle through an increase in AMP levels whereas muscle-specific SCD1 overexpression decreased both AMPK phosphorylation and the adenosine monophosphate/adenosine triphosphate (AMP/ATP) ratio. Changes in AMPK phosphorylation that were caused by SCD1 down- and upregulation affected NAD+ levels following changes in NAD+ -dependent deacetylase sirtuin-1 (SIRT1) activity and histone 3 (H3K9) acetylation and methylation status. Moreover, mice with muscle-targeted overexpression of SCD1 were more susceptible to high-fat diet-induced lipid accumulation and the development of insulin resistance compared with wild-type mice. These data show that SCD1 is involved in nucleotide (ATP and NAD+ ) metabolism and suggest that the SCD1-dependent regulation of muscle steatosis and insulin sensitivity are mediated by cooperation between AMPK- and SIRT1-regulated pathways. Altogether, the present study reveals a novel mechanism that links SCD1 with the maintenance of metabolic homeostasis and insulin sensitivity in skeletal muscle.


AMP; ATP; NADH; SCD1 overexpression; insulin sensitivity


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