A Synthetic Peptide Designed to Neutralize Lipopolysaccharides Attenuates Metaflammation and Diet-Induced Metabolic Derangements in Mice.
Mohammad S., Al Zoubi S., Collotta D., Krieg N., Wissuwa B., Ferreira Alves G., Purvis GSD., Norata GD., Baragetti A., Catapano AL., Solito E., Zechendorf E., Schürholz T., Correa-Vargas W., Brandenburg K., Coldewey SM., Collino M., Yaqoob MM., Martin L., Thiemermann C.
Metabolic endotoxemia has been suggested to play a role in the pathophysiology of metaflammation, insulin-resistance and ultimately type-2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). The role of endogenous antimicrobial peptides (AMPs), such as the cathelicidin LL-37, in T2DM is unknown. We report here for the first time that patients with T2DM compared to healthy volunteers have elevated plasma levels of LL-37. In a reverse-translational approach, we have investigated the effects of the AMP, peptide 19-2.5, in a murine model of high-fat diet (HFD)-induced insulin-resistance, steatohepatitis and T2DM. HFD-fed mice for 12 weeks caused obesity, an impairment in glycemic regulations, hypercholesterolemia, microalbuminuria and steatohepatitis, all of which were attenuated by Peptide 19-2.5. The liver steatosis caused by feeding mice a HFD resulted in the activation of nuclear factor kappa light chain enhancer of activated B cells (NF-ĸB) (phosphorylation of inhibitor of kappa beta kinase (IKK)α/β, IκBα, translocation of p65 to the nucleus), expression of NF-ĸB-dependent protein inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) and activation of the NOD-, LRR- and pyrin domain-containing protein 3 (NLRP3) inflammasome, all of which were reduced by Peptide 19-2.5. Feeding mice, a HFD also resulted in an enhanced expression of the lipid scavenger receptor cluster of differentiation 36 (CD36) secondary to activation of extracellular signal-regulated kinases (ERK)1/2, both of which were abolished by Peptide 19-2.5. Taken together, these results demonstrate that the AMP, Peptide 19-2.5 reduces insulin-resistance, steatohepatitis and proteinuria. These effects are, at least in part, due to prevention of the expression of CD36 and may provide further evidence for a role of metabolic endotoxemia in the pathogenesis of metaflammation and ultimately T2DM. The observed increase in the levels of the endogenous AMP LL-37 in patients with T2DM may serve to limit the severity of the disease.