Pharmacological glycerol-3-phosphate acyltransferase inhibition decreases food intake and adiposity and increases insulin sensitivity in diet-induced obesity

Francis P. Kuhajda, Susan Aja, Yajun J. Tu, Wan Fang Han, Susan M. Medghalchi, Rajaa El Meskini, Leslie E. Landree, Jonathan M. Peterson, Khadija Daniels, Kody Wong, Edward A. Wydysh, Craig A. Townsend, Gabriele V. Ronnett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Storage of excess calories as triglycerides is central to obesity and its associated disorders. Glycerol-3-phosphate acyltransferases (GPATs) catalyze the initial step in acylglyceride syntheses, including triglyceride synthesis. We utilized a novel small-molecule GPAT inhibitor, FSG67, to investigate metabolic consequences of systemic pharmacological GPAT inhibition in lean and diet-induced obese (DIO) mice. FSG67 administered intraperitoneally decreased body weight and energy intake, without producing conditioned taste aversion. Daily FSG67 (5 mg/kg, 15.3 mol/kg) produced gradual 12% weight loss in DIO mice beyond that due to transient 9- to 10-day hypophagia (6% weight loss in pair-fed controls). Continued FSG67 maintained the weight loss despite return to baseline energy intake. Weight was lost specifically from fat mass. Indirect calorimetry showed partial protection by FSG67 against decreased rates of oxygen consumption seen with hypophagia. Despite low respiratory exchange ratio due to a high-fat diet, FSG67-treated mice showed further decreased respiratory exchange ratio, beyond pair-fed controls, indicating enhanced fat oxidation. Chronic FSG67 increased glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity in DIO mice. Chronic FSG67 decreased gene expression for lipogenic enzymes in white adipose tissue and liver and decreased lipid accumulation in white adipose, brown adipose, and liver tissues without signs of damage. RT-PCR showed decreased gene expression for orexigenic hypothalamic neuropeptides AgRP or NPY after acute and chronic systemic FSG67. FSG67 given intracerebroventricularly (100 and 320 nmol icv) produced 24-h weight loss and feeding suppression, indicating contributions from direct central nervous system sites of action. Together, these data point to GPAT as a new potential therapeutic target for the management of obesity and its comorbidities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)R116-R130
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Regulatory Integrative and Comparative Physiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 2011


  • Acylglyceride synthesis
  • Fatty acid oxidation
  • Hepatic steatosis
  • Hypothalamus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)


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