Integrated networks for obese subjects

Graphical representation of the investigation

In a paper in a recent issue of Cell Metabolism, Human Protein Atlas-researchers investigate the biological processes that are altered in obese subjects.

Obesity is associated with an increased risk for a wide range of morbidities, including insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, and cardiovascular disease. Although the prevalence of obesity continues to dramatically increase worldwide, a clear understanding of the underlying molecular mechanisms involved in the progression of associated disorders is still lacking.

The researchers, led by Dr Adil Mardinoglu generated cell-specific integrated networks for obese and lean subjects by merging genome-scale metabolic, transcriptional regulatory and protein-protein interaction networks.

In addition, they performed genome-wide transcriptomics analysis to determine the global gene expression changes in the liver and three adipose tissues from obese subjects undergoing bariatric surgery and integrated these data into the cell-specific integrated networks.

The group found dysregulations in mannose metabolism in obese subjects and validated their predictions by detecting mannose levels in the plasma of the lean and obese subjects. They observed significant correlations between plasma mannose levels, BMI, and insulin resistance. The researchers also measured plasma mannose levels of the subjects in two additional different cohorts and observed that an increased plasma mannose level was associated with insulin resistance and insulin secretion.

Finally, the researchers identified mannose as one of the best plasma metabolites in explaining the variance in obesity-independent insulin resistance.

Read the whole article here >>

Explore the liver-specific proteome here >>

Frida Henningson Johnson