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Increased expression of fatty acid synthase and acetyl-CoA carboxylase in the prefrontal cortex and cerebellum in the valproic acid model of autism

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      The primary aim of the present study was to investigate alterations in enzymes associated with fatty acid synthesis, namely fatty acid synthase (FASN) and acetyl-CoA carboxylase (ACC), in the prefrontal cortex and cerebellum of the valproic acid (VPA)-induced animal model of autism. In this model, pregnant rats were given a single intraperitoneal injection of VPA, and prefrontal cortex and cerebellum samples from their pups were analyzed. The results of western blotting and reverse transcription-quantitative polymerase chain reaction analyses demonstrated that the protein and mRNA expression levels of FASN, ACC and phospho-ACC (pACC) were increased in the prefrontal cortex and cerebellum of the VPA model of autism. Furthermore, in the prefrontal cortex and cerebellum of the VPA model of autism, AMPK expression is increased, whereas PI3K and Akt expression are unchanged. This suggests that disorder of the phosphatidylinositol-4,5-bisphosphate 3-kinase (PI3K)/Akt/FASN and/or adenosine 5′-monophosphate-activated protein kinase (AMPK)/ACC pathway may be involved in the pathogenesis of autism. It is hypothesized that fatty acid synthesis participates in autism through PI3K/Akt/FASN and AMPK/ACC pathways.

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      Analysis of relative gene expression data using real-time quantitative PCR and the 2(-Delta Delta C(T)) Method.

       K Livak,  T Schmittgen (2001)
      The two most commonly used methods to analyze data from real-time, quantitative PCR experiments are absolute quantification and relative quantification. Absolute quantification determines the input copy number, usually by relating the PCR signal to a standard curve. Relative quantification relates the PCR signal of the target transcript in a treatment group to that of another sample such as an untreated control. The 2(-Delta Delta C(T)) method is a convenient way to analyze the relative changes in gene expression from real-time quantitative PCR experiments. The purpose of this report is to present the derivation, assumptions, and applications of the 2(-Delta Delta C(T)) method. In addition, we present the derivation and applications of two variations of the 2(-Delta Delta C(T)) method that may be useful in the analysis of real-time, quantitative PCR data. Copyright 2001 Elsevier Science (USA).
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        Behavioral alterations in rats prenatally exposed to valproic acid: animal model of autism.

        Autism is a severe behavioral disorder characterized by pervasive impairments in social interactions, deficits in verbal and nonverbal communication, and stereotyped, repetitive patterns of behaviors and interests. Recently, a new rodent model of autism was created by exposure of rat fetuses to valproic acid (VPA) on the 12.5th day of gestation (VPA rats). The model has striking anatomical, pathological, and etiological similarities to human data; however, it has not been characterized behaviorally. In order to determine if VPA rats present behavioral aberrations observed in autism, their behavior was extensively evaluated in a battery of tests. The results of the present experiments demonstrate that VPA rats exhibit: (1) lower sensitivity to pain and higher sensitivity to nonpainful stimuli, (2) diminished acoustic prepulse inhibition, (3) locomotor and repetitive/stereotypic-like hyperactivity combined with lower exploratory activity, and (4) decreased number of social behaviors and increased latency to social behaviors. In addition, VPA rats showed delayed maturation, lower body weight, delayed motor development, and attenuated integration of a coordinated series of reflexes, delayed nest-seeking response mediated by olfactory system, and normal negative geotaxis. Interestingly, all behavioral aberrations described in this paper appear before puberty, which could distinguish the VPA rat model of autism from other animal models of neurodevelopmental disorders, especially rodent models of schizophrenia. Our results bring further support to validity of the proposed VPA animal model of autism, suggesting similarities between the observed pattern of behavioral alterations in VPA rats and features of disturbed behavior in autistic patients.
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          Continuous fatty acid oxidation and reduced fat storage in mice lacking acetyl-CoA carboxylase 2.

          Malonyl-coenzyme A (malonyl-CoA), generated by acetyl-CoA carboxylases ACC1 and ACC2, is a key metabolite in the regulation of energy homeostasis. Here, we show that Acc2-/- mutant mice have a normal life span, a higher fatty acid oxidation rate, and lower amounts of fat. In comparison to the wild type, Acc2-deficient mice had 10- and 30-fold lower levels of malonyl-CoA in heart and muscle, respectively. The fatty acid oxidation rate in the soleus muscle of the Acc2-/- mice was 30% higher than that of wild-type mice and was not affected by addition of insulin; however, addition of insulin to the wild-type muscle reduced fatty acid oxidation by 45%. The mutant mice accumulated 50% less fat in their adipose tissue than did wild-type mice. These results raise the possibility that pharmacological manipulation of ACC2 may lead to loss of body fat in the context of normal caloric intake.

            Author and article information

            [1 ]Shanghai Key Laboratory of Psychotic Disorders, Shanghai Mental Health Center, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, Shanghai 200030, P.R. China
            [2 ]Department of Pathology, Shanghai Pulmonary Hospital, Tongji University, Shanghai 200433, P.R. China
            [3 ]Department of Integrative Medicine on Pediatrics, Shanghai Children's Medical Center, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, Shanghai 200127, P.R. China
            Author notes
            Correspondence to: Dr Xiaohong Li, Shanghai Key Laboratory of Psychotic Disorders, Shanghai Mental Health Center, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, 600 Wanping Nan Road, Shanghai 200030, P.R. China, E-mail: lxh15@
            Exp Ther Med
            Exp Ther Med
            Experimental and Therapeutic Medicine
            D.A. Spandidos
            September 2016
            05 July 2016
            05 July 2016
            : 12
            : 3
            : 1293-1298
            Copyright: © Chen et al.

            This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs License, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.



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