Publications by authors named "Aaron A Burr"

11 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Inside out: Bone marrow adipose tissue as a source of circulating adiponectin.

Adipocyte 2016 Jul-Sep;5(3):251-69. Epub 2016 Mar 22.

University/BHF Center for Cardiovascular Science, The Queen's Medical Research Institute, University of Edinburgh , Edinburgh, UK.

The adipocyte-derived hormone adiponectin mediates beneficial cardiometabolic effects, and hypoadiponectinemia is a biomarker for increased metabolic and cardiovascular risk. Indeed, circulating adiponectin decreases in obesity and insulin-resistance, likely because of impaired production from white adipose tissue (WAT). Conversely, lean states such as caloric restriction (CR) are characterized by hyperadiponectinemia, even without increased adiponectin production from WAT. The reasons underlying this paradox have remained elusive, but our recent research suggests that CR-associated hyperadiponectinemia derives from an unexpected source: bone marrow adipose tissue (MAT). Herein, we elaborate on this surprising discovery, including further discussion of potential mechanisms influencing adiponectin production from MAT; additional evidence both for and against our conclusions; and observations suggesting that the relationship between MAT and adiponectin might extend beyond CR. While many questions remain, the burgeoning study of MAT promises to reveal further key insights into MAT biology, both as a source of adiponectin and beyond.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/21623945.2016.1149269DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5014002PMC
September 2016

Lipodystrophy and severe metabolic dysfunction in mice with adipose tissue-specific insulin receptor ablation.

Mol Metab 2016 Jul 14;5(7):480-490. Epub 2016 May 14.

Department of Physiology & Biophysics, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA. Electronic address:

Objective: Insulin signaling plays pivotal roles in the development and metabolism of many tissues and cell types. A previous study demonstrated that ablation of insulin receptor (IR) with aP2-Cre markedly reduced adipose tissues mass and protected mice from obesity. However, multiple studies have demonstrated widespread non-adipocyte recombination of floxed alleles in aP2-Cre mice. These findings underscore the need to re-evaluate the role of IR in adipocyte and systemic metabolism with a more adipose tissue-specific Cre mouse line.

Methods: We generated and phenotyped a new adipose tissue-specific IR mouse model using the adipose tissue-specific Adipoq-Cre line.

Results: Here we show that the Adipoq-Cre-mediated IR KO in mice leads to lipodystrophy and metabolic dysfunction, which is in stark contrast to the previous study. In contrast to white adipocytes, absence of insulin signaling does not affect development of marrow and brown adipocytes, but instead is required for lipid accumulation particularly for the marrow adipocytes. Lipodystrophic IR KO mice have profound insulin resistance, hyperglycemia, organomegaly, and impaired adipokine secretion.

Conclusions: Our results demonstrate differential roles for insulin signaling for white, brown, and marrow adipocyte development and metabolic regulation.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.molmet.2016.05.005DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4921803PMC
July 2016

Marrow Adipose Tissue: Trimming the Fat.

Trends Endocrinol Metab 2016 06 16;27(6):392-403. Epub 2016 Apr 16.

Department of Molecular and Integrative Physiology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, USA; Department of Internal Medicine, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, USA. Electronic address:

Marrow adipose tissue (MAT) is a unique fat depot, located in the skeleton, that has the potential to contribute to both local and systemic metabolic processes. In this review we highlight several recent conceptual developments pertaining to the origin and function of MAT adipocytes; consider the relationship of MAT to beige, brown, and white adipose depots; explore MAT expansion and turnover in humans and rodents; and discuss future directions for MAT research in the context of endocrine function and metabolic disease. MAT has the potential to exert both local and systemic effects on metabolic homeostasis, skeletal remodeling, hematopoiesis, and the development of bone metastases. The diversity of these functions highlights the breadth of the potential impact of MAT on health and disease.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.tem.2016.03.016DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4875855PMC
June 2016

Expansion of Bone Marrow Adipose Tissue During Caloric Restriction Is Associated With Increased Circulating Glucocorticoids and Not With Hypoleptinemia.

Endocrinology 2016 Feb 22;157(2):508-21. Epub 2015 Dec 22.

Departments of Molecular and Integrative Physiology (W.P.C., E.L.S., S.D.P., H.A.P., B.S.L., A.A.B., H.M., A.J.B., B.S., O.A.M.) and Internal Medicine (A.K.D., O.A.M.), and Program in Cellular and Molecular Biology (B.R.S., O.A.M.), University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109; Musculoskeletal Research (W.P.C., V.K.), Lilly Research Laboratories, Indianapolis, Indiana 46285; and University/British Heart Foundation Centre for Cardiovascular Science (W.P.C., C.M.H.R., R.J.S.), The Queen's Medical Research Institute, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, United Kingdom EH16 4TJ.

Bone marrow adipose tissue (MAT) accounts for up to 70% of bone marrow volume in healthy adults and increases further in clinical conditions of altered skeletal or metabolic function. Perhaps most strikingly, and in stark contrast to white adipose tissue, MAT has been found to increase during caloric restriction (CR) in humans and many other species. Hypoleptinemia may drive MAT expansion during CR but this has not been demonstrated conclusively. Indeed, MAT formation and function are poorly understood; hence, the physiological and pathological roles of MAT remain elusive. We recently revealed that MAT contributes to hyperadiponectinemia and systemic adaptations to CR. To further these observations, we have now performed CR studies in rabbits to determine whether CR affects adiponectin production by MAT. Moderate or extensive CR decreased bone mass, white adipose tissue mass, and circulating leptin but, surprisingly, did not cause hyperadiponectinemia or MAT expansion. Although this unexpected finding limited our subsequent MAT characterization, it demonstrates that during CR, bone loss can occur independently of MAT expansion; increased MAT may be required for hyperadiponectinemia; and hypoleptinemia is not sufficient for MAT expansion. We further investigated this relationship in mice. In females, CR increased MAT without decreasing circulating leptin, suggesting that hypoleptinemia is also not necessary for MAT expansion. Finally, circulating glucocorticoids increased during CR in mice but not rabbits, suggesting that glucocorticoids might drive MAT expansion during CR. These observations provide insights into the causes and consequences of CR-associated MAT expansion, knowledge with potential relevance to health and disease.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1210/en.2015-1477DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4733126PMC
February 2016

The deubiquitinase ataxin-3 requires Rad23 and DnaJ-1 for its neuroprotective role in Drosophila melanogaster.

Neurobiol Dis 2015 Oct 22;82:12-21. Epub 2015 May 22.

Department of Pharmacology, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, MI 48201, USA; Cancer Biology Graduate Program, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, MI 48201, USA; Department of Neurology, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, MI 48201, USA.

Ataxin-3 is a deubiquitinase and polyglutamine (polyQ) disease protein with a protective role in Drosophila melanogaster models of neurodegeneration. In the fruit fly, wild-type ataxin-3 suppresses toxicity from several polyQ disease proteins, including a pathogenic version of itself that causes spinocerebellar ataxia type 3 and pathogenic huntingtin, which causes Huntington's disease. The molecular partners of ataxin-3 in this protective function are unclear. Here, we report that ataxin-3 requires its direct interaction with the ubiquitin-binding and proteasome-associated protein, Rad23 (known as hHR23A/B in mammals) in order to suppress toxicity from polyQ species in Drosophila. According to additional studies, ataxin-3 does not rely on autophagy or the proteasome to suppress polyQ-dependent toxicity in fly eyes. Instead this deubiquitinase, through its interaction with Rad23, leads to increased protein levels of the co-chaperone DnaJ-1 and depends on it to protect against degeneration. Through DnaJ-1, our data connect ataxin-3 and Rad23 to protective processes involved with protein folding rather than increased turnover of toxic polyQ species.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.nbd.2015.05.010DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4710962PMC
October 2015

DnaJ-1 and karyopherin α3 suppress degeneration in a new Drosophila model of Spinocerebellar Ataxia Type 6.

Hum Mol Genet 2015 Aug 7;24(15):4385-96. Epub 2015 May 7.

Department of Pharmacology, Cancer Biology Graduate Program and Department of Neurology, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, MI 48201, USA and

Spinocerebellar ataxia type 6 (SCA6) belongs to the family of CAG/polyglutamine (polyQ)-dependent neurodegenerative disorders. SCA6 is caused by abnormal expansion in a CAG trinucleotide repeat within exon 47 of CACNA1A, a bicistronic gene that encodes α1A, a P/Q-type calcium channel subunit and a C-terminal protein, termed α1ACT. Expansion of the CAG/polyQ region of CACNA1A occurs within α1ACT and leads to ataxia. There are few animal models of SCA6. Here, we describe the generation and characterization of the first Drosophila melanogaster models of SCA6, which express the entire human α1ACT protein with a normal or expanded polyQ. The polyQ-expanded version of α1ACT recapitulates the progressively degenerative nature of SCA6 when expressed in various fly tissues and the presence of densely staining aggregates. Additional studies identify the co-chaperone DnaJ-1 as a potential therapeutic target for SCA6. Expression of DnaJ-1 potently suppresses α1ACT-dependent degeneration and lethality, concomitant with decreased aggregation and reduced nuclear localization of the pathogenic protein. Mutating the nuclear importer karyopherin α3 also leads to reduced toxicity from pathogenic α1ACT. Little is known about the steps leading to degeneration in SCA6 and the means to protect neurons in this disease are lacking. Invertebrate animal models of SCA6 can expand our understanding of molecular sequelae related to degeneration in this disorder and lead to the rapid identification of cellular components that can be targeted to treat it.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/hmg/ddv174DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4492400PMC
August 2015

Ubiquitin-binding site 2 of ataxin-3 prevents its proteasomal degradation by interacting with Rad23.

Nat Commun 2014 Aug 21;5:4638. Epub 2014 Aug 21.

1] Department of Pharmacology, Wayne State University School of Medicine, 540 E Canfield, Scott Hall Room 3108, Detroit, Michigan 48201, USA [2] Department of Neurology, Wayne State University School of Medicine, 540 E Canfield, Scott Hall Room 3108, Detroit, Michigan 48201, USA [3] Cancer Biology Program, Wayne State University School of Medicine, 540 E Canfield, Scott Hall Room 3108, Detroit, Michigan 48201, USA.

Polyglutamine repeat expansion in ataxin-3 causes neurodegeneration in the most common dominant ataxia, spinocerebellar ataxia type 3 (SCA3). Since reducing levels of disease proteins improves pathology in animals, we investigated how ataxin-3 is degraded. Here we show that, unlike most proteins, ataxin-3 turnover does not require its ubiquitination, but is regulated by ubiquitin-binding site 2 (UbS2) on its N terminus. Mutating UbS2 decreases ataxin-3 protein levels in cultured mammalian cells and in Drosophila melanogaster by increasing its proteasomal turnover. Ataxin-3 interacts with the proteasome-associated proteins Rad23A/B through UbS2. Knockdown of Rad23 in cultured cells and in Drosophila results in lower levels of ataxin-3 protein. Importantly, reducing Rad23 suppresses ataxin-3-dependent degeneration in flies. We present a mechanism for ubiquitination-independent degradation that is impeded by protein interactions with proteasome-associated factors. We conclude that UbS2 is a potential target through which to enhance ataxin-3 degradation for SCA3 therapy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/ncomms5638DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4237202PMC
August 2014

Using membrane-targeted green fluorescent protein to monitor neurotoxic protein-dependent degeneration of Drosophila eyes.

J Neurosci Res 2014 Sep 2;92(9):1100-9. Epub 2014 May 2.

Graduate Program in Cancer Biology, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, Michigan; Department of Pharmacology, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, Michigan.

Age-related neurodegeneration has been studied extensively through the use of model organisms, including the genetically versatile Drosophila melanogaster. Various neurotoxic proteins have been expressed in fly eyes to approximate degeneration occurring in humans, and much has been learned from this heterologous system. Although Drosophila expedites scientific research through rapid generational times and relative inexpensiveness, one factor that can hinder analyses is the examination of milder forms of degeneration caused by some toxic proteins in fly eyes. Whereas several disease proteins cause massive degeneration that is easily observed by examining the external structure of the fly eye, others cause mild degeneration that is difficult to observe externally and requires laborious histological preparation to assess and monitor. Here, we describe a sensitive fluorescence-based method to observe, monitor, and quantify mild Drosophila eye degeneration caused by various proteins, including the polyglutamine disease proteins ataxin-3 (spinocerebellar ataxia type 3) and huntingtin (Huntington's disease), mutant α-synuclein (Parkinson's disease), and Aβ42 (Alzheimer's disease). We show that membrane-targeted green fluorescent protein reports degeneration robustly and quantitatively. This simple yet powerful technique, which is amenable to large-scale screens, can help accelerate studies to understand age-related degeneration and to find factors that suppress it for therapeutic purposes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/jnr.23395DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4144675PMC
September 2014

Ubiquitination regulates the neuroprotective function of the deubiquitinase ataxin-3 in vivo.

J Biol Chem 2013 Nov 8;288(48):34460-9. Epub 2013 Oct 8.

From the Departments of Pharmacology and Neurology and.

Deubiquitinases (DUBs) are proteases that regulate various cellular processes by controlling protein ubiquitination. Cell-based studies indicate that the regulation of the activity of DUBs is important for homeostasis and is achieved by multiple mechanisms, including through their own ubiquitination. However, the physiological significance of the ubiquitination of DUBs to their functions in vivo is unclear. Here, we report that ubiquitination of the DUB ataxin-3 at lysine residue 117, which markedly enhances its protease activity in vitro, is critical for its ability to suppress toxic protein-dependent degeneration in Drosophila melanogaster. Compared with ataxin-3 with only Lys-117 present, ataxin-3 that does not become ubiquitinated performs significantly less efficiently in suppressing or delaying the onset of toxic protein-dependent degeneration in flies. According to further studies, the C terminus of Hsc70-interacting protein (CHIP), an E3 ubiquitin ligase that ubiquitinates ataxin-3 in vitro, is dispensable for its ubiquitination in vivo and is not required for the neuroprotective function of this DUB in Drosophila. Our work also suggests that ataxin-3 suppresses degeneration by regulating toxic protein aggregation rather than stability.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1074/jbc.M113.513903DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3843061PMC
November 2013

Ubiquitin-specific protease 25 functions in Endoplasmic Reticulum-associated degradation.

PLoS One 2012 9;7(5):e36542. Epub 2012 May 9.

Department of Pharmacology and Department of Neurology, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, Michigan, United States of America.

Endoplasmic Reticulum (ER)-associated degradation (ERAD) discards abnormal proteins synthesized in the ER. Through coordinated actions of ERAD components, misfolded/anomalous proteins are recognized, ubiquitinated, extracted from the ER and ultimately delivered to the proteasome for degradation. It is not well understood how ubiquitination of ERAD substrates is regulated. Here, we present evidence that the deubiquitinating enzyme Ubiquitin-Specific Protease 25 (USP25) is involved in ERAD. Our data support a model where USP25 counteracts ubiquitination of ERAD substrates by the ubiquitin ligase HRD1, rescuing them from degradation by the proteasome.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0036542PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3348923PMC
September 2012

An epifluorescent attachment improves whole-plant digital photography of Arabidopsis thaliana expressing red-shifted green fluorescent protein.

AoB Plants 2012 6;2012:pls003. Epub 2012 Mar 6.

Department of Biology , University of Detroit Mercy , 4001 W. McNichols Road, Detroit, MI 48221 , USA.

Background And Aims: Studies have shown that levels of green fluorescent protein (GFP) leaf surface fluorescence are directly proportional to GFP soluble protein concentration in transgenic plants. However, instruments that measure GFP surface fluorescence are expensive. The goal of this investigation was to develop techniques with consumer digital cameras to analyse GFP surface fluorescence in transgenic plants.

Methodology: Inexpensive filter cubes containing machine vision dichroic filters and illuminated with blue light-emitting diodes (LED) were designed to attach to digital single-lens reflex (SLR) camera macro lenses. The apparatus was tested on purified enhanced GFP, and on wild-type and GFP-expressing arabidopsis grown autotrophically and heterotrophically.

Principal Findings: Spectrum analysis showed that the apparatus illuminates specimens with wavelengths between ∼450 and ∼500 nm, and detects fluorescence between ∼510 and ∼595 nm. Epifluorescent photographs taken with SLR digital cameras were able to detect red-shifted GFP fluorescence in Arabidopsis thaliana leaves and cotyledons of pot-grown plants, as well as roots, hypocotyls and cotyledons of etiolated and light-grown plants grown heterotrophically. Green fluorescent protein fluorescence was detected primarily in the green channel of the raw image files. Studies with purified GFP produced linear responses to both protein surface density and exposure time (H(0): β (slope) = 0 mean counts per pixel (ng s mm(-2))(-1), r(2) > 0.994, n = 31, P < 1.75 × 10(-29)).

Conclusions: Epifluorescent digital photographs taken with complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor and charge-coupled device SLR cameras can be used to analyse red-shifted GFP surface fluorescence using visible blue light. This detection device can be constructed with inexpensive commercially available materials, thus increasing the accessibility of whole-organism GFP expression analysis to research laboratories and teaching institutions with small budgets.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/aobpla/pls003DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3296078PMC
August 2012
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