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Annu Rev Pharmacol Toxicol. 2019 Jan 6;59:65-87. doi: 10.1146/annurev-pharmtox-010716-104727.

Emerging Pharmacological Targets for the Treatment of Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease, Insulin Resistance, and Type 2 Diabetes.

Author information

1
Department of Internal Medicine, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut 06520, USA; email: leigh.goedeke@yale.edu , rachel.perry@yale.edu , gerald.shulman@yale.edu.
2
Department of Cellular and Molecular Physiology, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut 06520, USA.
3
Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut 06520, USA.

Abstract

Type 2 diabetes (T2D) is characterized by persistent hyperglycemia despite hyperinsulinemia, affects more than 400 million people worldwide, and is a major cause of morbidity and mortality. Insulin resistance, of which ectopic lipid accumulation in the liver [nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)] and skeletal muscle is the root cause, plays a major role in the development of T2D. Although lifestyle interventions and weight loss are highly effective at reversing NAFLD and T2D, weight loss is difficult to sustain, and newer approaches aimed at treating the root cause of T2D are urgently needed. In this review, we highlight emerging pharmacological strategies aimed at improving insulin sensitivity and T2D by altering hepatic energy balance or inhibiting key enzymes involved in hepatic lipid synthesis. We also summarize recent research suggesting that liver-targeted mitochondrial uncoupling may be an attractive therapeutic approach to treat NAFLD, nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, and T2D.

KEYWORDS:

ectopic lipids; insulin resistance; liver-targeted mitochondrial uncoupling; type 2 diabetes

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