Cover Story Current Issue

White adipose tissue (WAT) is a complex organ that plays a central role in systemic energy balance through its interrelated metabolic, endocrine, and immune functions. Adipocytes, the parenchymal cells of adipose tissue, have diverse functions that include storage and mobilization of lipids. They also release endocrine signals that report energy status to the brain, regulating metabolic functions in peripheral organs. Importantly, the metabolic character of white adipocytes is flexible, with cells capable of assuming distinct anabolic and catabolic/thermogenic phenotypes, often within the same adipose tissue depot

Elizabeth A. Rondini, Vanesa D. Ramseyer, Rayanne B. Burl, Roger Pique-Regi, James G. Granneman

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Current Issue

A viral insulin-like peptide is a natural competitive antagonist of the human IGF-1 receptor

Fa Zhang, Emrah Altindis, C. Ronald Kahn, Richard D. DiMarchi, Vasily Gelfanov

Objective

Natural sources of molecular diversity remain of utmost importance as a reservoir of proteins and peptides with unique biological functions. We recently identified such a family of viral insulin-like peptides (VILPs). We sought to advance the chemical methods in synthesis to explore the structure-function relationship within these VILPs, and the molecular basis for differential biological activities relative to human IGF-1 and insulin.

Methods

Optimized chemical methods in synthesis were established for a set of VILPs and related analogs. These modified forms included the substitution of select VILP chains with those derived from human insulin and IGF-1. Each peptide was assessed in vitro for agonism and antagonism at the human insulin and the human insulin-like growth factor 1 receptor (IGF-1R).

Results

We report here that one of these VILPs, lymphocystis disease virus-1 (LCDV1)-VILP, has the unique property to be a potent and full antagonist of the IGF-1R. We demonstrate the coordinated importance of the B- and C-chains of the VILP in regulating this activity. Moreover, mutation of the glycine following the first cysteine in the B-chain of IGF-1 to serine, in concert with substitution to the connecting peptide of LCDV1-VILP, converted native IGF-1 to a high potency antagonist.

Conclusions

The results reveal novel aspects in ligand–receptor interactions at the IGF-1 receptor and identify a set of antagonists of potential medicinal importance.

A viral insulin-like peptide is a natural competitive antagonist of the human IGF-1 receptor

Fa Zhang, Emrah Altindis, C. Ronald Kahn, Richard D. DiMarchi, Vasily Gelfanov

Objective

Natural sources of molecular diversity remain of utmost importance as a reservoir of proteins and peptides with unique biological functions. We recently identified such a family of viral insulin-like peptides (VILPs). We sought to advance the chemical methods in synthesis to explore the structure-function relationship within these VILPs, and the molecular basis for differential biological activities relative to human IGF-1 and insulin.

Methods

Optimized chemical methods in synthesis were established for a set of VILPs and related analogs. These modified forms included the substitution of select VILP chains with those derived from human insulin and IGF-1. Each peptide was assessed in vitro for agonism and antagonism at the human insulin and the human insulin-like growth factor 1 receptor (IGF-1R).

Results

We report here that one of these VILPs, lymphocystis disease virus-1 (LCDV1)-VILP, has the unique property to be a potent and full antagonist of the IGF-1R. We demonstrate the coordinated importance of the B- and C-chains of the VILP in regulating this activity. Moreover, mutation of the glycine following the first cysteine in the B-chain of IGF-1 to serine, in concert with substitution to the connecting peptide of LCDV1-VILP, converted native IGF-1 to a high potency antagonist.

Conclusions

The results reveal novel aspects in ligand–receptor interactions at the IGF-1 receptor and identify a set of antagonists of potential medicinal importance.

2020 impact factor: 7.4

The 60 Second Metabolist

In this section authors briefly report on their work recently published in Molecular Metabolism.

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