5,581 research outputs found

    FARNESOID X RECEPTOR AND REPRODUCTION

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    Farnesoid X alpha receptors (FXR? or NR1H4) are present in male and female reproductive tissues. The aim of the present review is to describe those actions of the most relevant ligands of FXR? on reproduction and the interaction of this receptor with other nuclear receptors, for understanding the possible role of FXR? in reproductive events. Thus, although the relevance of the FXR? on reproduction is widely unknown, its endogenous ligands like farnesol, chenodeoxycholic acid (CDCA), and cholate acid (CA) participate in proliferation, apoptosis, differentiation, and steroidogenesis in reproductive tissues. In these tissues FXR? modulates estrogen and androgen actions. Since FXR? is stretched related to other nuclear receptors, also present in reproductive tissues, such as the liver X receptors (LXR), peroxisome proliferation-activated receptor (PPAR), liver receptors homolog-1 (LRH-1), small heterodimer partner (SHP), and dosage-sensitive sex reversal (DAX1), the FXR? actions on reproductive tissues might be directly or indirectly mediated by its interaction with these nuclear receptors

    A Role of the Bile Salt Receptor FXR in Atherosclerosis

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    This study reviews current insights into the role of bile salts and bile salt receptors on the progression and regression of atherosclerosis. Bile salts have emerged as important modifiers of lipid and energy metabolism. At the molecular level, bile salts regulate lipid and energy homeostasis mainly via the bile salt receptors FXR and TGR5. Activation of FXR has been shown to improve plasma lipid profiles, whereas Fxr(-/-) mice have increased plasma triglyceride and very-low-density lipoprotein levels. Nevertheless, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels are increased in these mice, suggesting that FXR has both anti-and proatherosclerotic properties. Interestingly, there is increasing evidence for a role of FXR in "nonclassical" bile salt target tissues, eg, vasculature and macrophages. In these tissues, FXR has been shown to influence vascular tension and regulate the unloading of cholesterol from foam cells, respectively. Recent publications have provided insight into the antiinflammatory properties of FXR in atherosclerosis. Bile salt signaling via TGR5 might regulate energy homeostasis, which could serve as an attractive target to increase energy expenditure and weight loss. Interventions aiming to increase cholesterol turnover (eg, by bile salt sequestration) significantly improve plasma lipid profiles and diminish atherosclerosis in animal models. Bile salt metabolism and bile salt signaling pathways represent attractive therapeutic targets for the treatment of atherosclerosi

    Tissue specific induction of p62/sqstm1 by farnesoid X receptor

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    Background: Farnesoid X Receptor (FXR) is a member of the nuclear receptor superfamily and is a ligand-activated transcription factor essential for maintaining liver and intestinal homeostasis. FXR is protective against carcinogenesis and inflammation in liver and intestine as demonstrated by the development of inflammation and tumors in the liver and intestine of FXR knock-out mice. However, mechanisms for the protective effects of FXR are not completely understood. This study reports a novel role of FXR in regulating expression of Sqstm1, which encodes for p62 protein. p62 plays an important role in maintaining cellular homeostasis through selective autophagy and activating signal transduction pathways, such as NF-κB to support cell survival and caspase-8 to initiate apoptosis. FXR regulation of Sqstm1 may serve as a protective mechanism. Methods and Results: This study showed that FXR bound to the Sqstm1 gene in both mouse livers and ileums as determined by chromatin immunoprecipitation. In addition, FXR activation enhanced transcriptional activation of Sqstm1 in vitro. However, wild-type mice treated with GW4064, a synthetic FXR ligand, showed that FXR activation induced mRNA and protein expression of Sqstm1/p62 in ileum, but not in liver. Interestingly, FXR-transgenic mice showed induced mRNA expression of Sqstm1 in both liver and ileum compared to wild-type mice. Conclusions: Our current study has identified a novel role of FXR in regulating the expression of p62, a key factor in protein degradation and cell signaling. Regulation of p62 by FXR indicates tissue-specific and gene-dosage effects. Furthermore, FXR-mediated induction of p62 may implicate a protective mechanism of FXR. © 2012 Williams et al

    The FXR agonist obeticholic acid inhibits the cancerogenic potential of human cholangiocarcinoma

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    Cholangiocarcinoma (CCA) is an aggressive cancer with high resistance to chemotherapeutics. CCA is enriched in cancer stem cells, which correlate with aggressiveness and prognosis. FXR, a member of the metabolic nuclear receptor family, is markedly down-regulated in human CCA. Our aim was to evaluate, in primary cultures of human intrahepatic CCA (iCCA), the effects of the FXR agonist obeticholic acid (OCA), a semisynthetic bile acid derivative, on their cancerogenic potential. Primary human iCCA cell cultures were prepared from surgical specimens of mucinous or mixed iCCA subtypes. Increasing concentrations (0–2.5 μM) of OCA were added to culture media and, after 3–10 days, effects on proliferation (MTS assay, cell population doubling time), apoptosis (annexin V-FITC/propidium iodide), cell migration and invasion (wound healing response and Matrigel invasion assay), and cancerogenic potential (spheroid formation, clonogenic assay, colony formation capacity) were evaluated. Results: FXR gene expression was downregulated (RT-qPCR) in iCCA cells vs normal human biliary tree stem cells (p < 0.05) and in mucinous iCCA vs mixed iCCA cells (p < 0.05) but was upregulated by addition of OCA. OCA significantly (p < 0.05) inhibited proliferation of both mucinous and mixed iCCA cells, starting at a concentration as low as 0.05 μM. Also, CDCA (but not UDCA) inhibited cell proliferation, although to a much lower extent than OCA, consistent with its different affinity for FXR. OCA significantly induced apoptosis of both iCCA subtypes and decreased their in vitro cancerogenic potential, as evaluated by impairment of colony and spheroid formation capacity and delayed wound healing and Matrigel invasion. In general, these effects were more evident in mixed than mucinous iCCA cells. When tested together with Gemcitabine and Cisplatin, OCA potentiated the anti-proliferative and pro-apoptotic effects of these chemotherapeutics, but mainly in mixed iCCA cells. OCA abolished the capacity of both mucinous and mixed iCCA cells to form colonies when administered together with Gemcitabine and Cisplatin. In subcutaneous xenografts of mixed iCCA cells, OCA alone or combined with Gemcitabine or Cisplatin markedly reduced the tumor size after 5 weeks of treatment by inducing necrosis of tumor mass and inhibiting cell proliferation. In conclusion, FXR is down-regulated in iCCA cells, and its activation by OCA results in anti-cancerogenic effects against mucinous and mixed iCCA cells, both in vitro and in vivo. The effects of OCA predominated in mixed iCCA cells, consistent with the lower aggressiveness and the higher FXR expression in this CCA subtype. These results, showing the FXR-mediated capacity of OCA to inhibit cholangiocarcinogenesis, represent the basis for testing OCA in clinical trials of CCA patients

    Obeticholic acid for the treatment of primary biliary cholangitis in adult patients: clinical utility and patient selection.

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    Primary biliary cholangitis (PBC), previously known as primary biliary "cirrhosis", is a rare autoimmune liver disease characterized by the hallmark autoantibodies to mitochondrial antigens and immune-mediated destruction of small bile duct epithelial cells leading to cholestasis and cirrhosis. Surprisingly, while immune modulators have not been effective in the treatment of PBC, supplementation with the hydrophilic bile acid (BA) ursodeoxycholic acid (UDCA) has been demonstrated to slow the disease progression. However, a significant minority of PBC patients do not have a complete response to UDCA and remain at risk of continued disease progression. Although the mechanisms of action are not well understood, UDCA provided proof of concept for BA therapy in PBC. Obeticholic acid (OCA), a novel derivative of the human BA chenodeoxycholic acid, is a potent agonist of the nuclear hormone receptor farnesoid X receptor, which regulates BA synthesis and transport. A series of clinical trials of OCA in PBC, primarily in combination with UDCA, have established that OCA leads to significant reductions in serum alkaline phosphatase that are predicted to lead to improved clinical outcomes, while dose-dependent pruritus has been the most common adverse effect. On the basis of these studies, OCA was given conditional approval by the US Food and Drug Administration with plans to establish the long-term clinical efficacy of OCA in patients with advanced PBC

    Nuclear receptors in vascular biology

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    Nuclear receptors sense a wide range of steroids and hormones (estrogens, progesterone, androgens, glucocorticoid, and mineralocorticoid), vitamins (A and D), lipid metabolites, carbohydrates, and xenobiotics. In response to these diverse but critically important mediators, nuclear receptors regulate the homeostatic control of lipids, carbohydrate, cholesterol, and xenobiotic drug metabolism, inflammation, cell differentiation and development, including vascular development. The nuclear receptor family is one of the most important groups of signaling molecules in the body and as such represent some of the most important established and emerging clinical and therapeutic targets. This review will highlight some of the recent trends in nuclear receptor biology related to vascular biology

    Bile Acid Receptor Therapeutics Effects on Chronic Liver Diseases

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    In the past ten years, our understanding of the importance of bile acids has expanded from fat absorption and glucose/lipid/energy homeostasis into potential therapeutic targets for amelioration of chronic cholestatic liver diseases. The discovery of important bile acid signaling mechanisms, as well as their role in metabolism, has increased the interest in bile acid/bile acid receptor research development. Bile acid levels and speciation are dysregulated during liver injury/damage resulting in cytotoxicity, inflammation, and fibrosis. An increasing focus to target bile acid receptors, responsible for bile acid synthesis and circulation, such as Farnesoid X receptor and apical sodium-dependent bile acid transporter to reduce bile acid synthesis have resulted in clinical trials for treatment of previously untreatable chronic liver diseases such as non-alcoholic steatohepatitis and primary sclerosing cholangitis. This review focuses on current bile acid receptor mediators and their effects on parenchymal and non-parenchymal cells. Attention will also be brought to the gut/liver axis during chronic liver damage and its treatment with bile acid receptor modulators. Overall, these studies lend evidence to the importance of bile acids and their receptors on liver disease establishment and progression
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