Publications by authors named "Julia Modesto Vicente"

4 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Agomelatine reduces circulating triacylglycerides and hepatic steatosis in fructose-treated rats.

Biomed Pharmacother 2021 Jun 11;141:111807. Epub 2021 Jun 11.

Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Medical Sciences, State University of Campinas, 105 Alexander Flemming St., Zip Code: 13083-881, Campinas, SP, Brazil. Electronic address:

Agomelatine (AGO) is an antidepressant drug with agonistic activity at melatonin receptor 1 (MT1) and MT2 and with neutral antagonistic activity at serotonin receptor 5-HT2. Although experimental studies show that melatonin reduces hypertriglyceridemia and hepatic steatosis induced by excessive fructose intake, no studies have tested if AGO exerts similar actions. To address this issue we have treated male Wistar rats with fructose (15% in the drinking water) and/or AGO (40 mg/kg/day) for two weeks. AGO reduced body weight gain, feeding efficiency and hepatic lipid levels without affecting caloric intake in fructose-treated rats. AGO has also decreased very low-density lipoprotein (VLDL) production and circulating TAG levels after an oral load with olive oil. Accordingly, treatment with AGO reduced the hepatic expression of fatty acid synthase (Fasn), a limiting step for hepatic de novo lipogenesis (DNLG). The expression of apolipoprotein B (Apob) and microsomal triglyceride transfer protein (Mttp) in the ileum, two crucial proteins for intestinal lipoprotein production, were also downregulated by treatment with AGO. Altogether, the present data show that AGO mimics the metabolic benefits of melatonin when used in fructose-treated rats. This study also suggests that it is relevant to evaluate the potential of AGO to treat metabolic disorders in future clinical trials.
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June 2021

Dexamethasone programs lower fatty acid absorption and reduced PPAR-γ and fat/CD36 expression in the jejunum of the adult rat offspring.

Life Sci 2021 Jan 13;265:118765. Epub 2020 Nov 13.

Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Medical Sciences, State University of Campinas, 105 Alexander Flemming St., Campinas, SP 13083-881, Brazil. Electronic address:

The progeny of rats born and breastfed by mothers receiving dexamethasone (DEX) during pregnancy exhibits permanent reduction in body weight and adiposity but the precise mechanisms related to this programming are not fully understood. In order to clarify this issue, the present study investigated key aspects of lipoprotein production and lipid metabolism by the liver and the intestine that would explain the reduced adiposity seen in the adult offspring exposed to DEX in utero. Female Wistar rats were treated with DEX (0.1 mg/kg/day) between the 15th and the 21st days of pregnancy, while control mothers were treated with vehicle. Male offspring born to control mothers were nursed by either adoptive control mothers (CTL/CTL) or DEX-treated mothers (CTL/DEX). Male offspring born to DEX-treated mothers were nursed by either control mothers (DEX/CTL) or adoptive DEX-treated mothers (DEX/DEX). We found that only the male DEX/DEX offspring had reduced adiposity. Additionally, male DEX/DEX progeny had lower circulating triacylglycerol (TAG) levels only in fed-state. The four groups of offspring presented similar energy expenditure, respiratory quotient and very low-density lipoprotein (VLDL) production. On the other hand, DEX/DEX rats displayed reduced TAG levels after gavage with olive oil and reduced expression of fatty acid translocase Cd36 (Fat/Cd36) and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ (Pparg) in the jejunum. Altogether, our study supports the notion that reduced fat absorption by the jejunum may contribute to the lower adiposity of the adult offspring born and breastfed by mothers treated with DEX during pregnancy.
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January 2021

Long-term increase of insulin secretion in mice subjected to pregnancy and lactation.

Endocr Connect 2020 Mar 1. Epub 2020 Mar 1.

G Anhe, Department of Pharmacology, State University of Campinas, Campinas, Brazil.

Purpose: Observational studies show that longer breastfeeding periods reduce maternal risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus. However, it is currently unknown if the long-term benefits of breastfeeding for maternal glucose homeostasis are linked to changes in the endocrine pancreas.

Methods: We presently evaluated functional, morphological and molecular aspects of the endocrine pancreas of mice subjected to two sequential cycles of pregnancy and lactation (L21). Age-matched mice not allowed to breastfeed (L0) and virgin mice were used as controls.

Results: L21 mice exhibited increased tolerance and increased glucose-stimulated insulin secretion (GSIS) by isolated islets. Pancreatic islets of L21 mice did not present evident morphological changes to justify the increased GSIS. On the other hand, islets of L21 mice exhibited a reduction in Cavb3 and Kir6.2 expression with concordant increased intracellular Ca2+ levels after challenge with glucose.

Conclusion: Altogether, the present findings show the breastfeeding exerts long-term benefits for maternal endocrine pancreas by increasing intracellular Ca2+ levels and GSIS.
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March 2020

The absence of lactation after pregnancy induces long-term lipid accumulation in maternal liver of mice.

Life Sci 2019 Jan 15;217:261-270. Epub 2018 Dec 15.

Department of Pharmacology, Faculty of Medical Sciences, State University of Campinas, 13084-971 Campinas, Brazil. Electronic address:

Aims: The present investigation evaluated whether pregnancy followed by lactation exerts long-term impacts on maternal hepatic lipid metabolism.

Main Methods: Female mice were subjected to two pregnancies, after which they were either allowed to breastfeed their pups for 21 days (L21) or had their litter removed (L0). Age-matched virgin mice were used as controls (CTL). Three months after the second delivery, serum was collected for lipid profiling, and fragments of liver were used to assess lipid content and to evaluate the key steps of de novo non-esterified fatty acid (NEFA) synthesis, esterification and β-oxidation, very low density lipoprotein (VLDL) assembly and secretion and autophagy.

Key Findings: L0 exhibited a significant increase in hepatic TG and reduced apolipoprotein B-100 (ApoB-100) expression. L21 mice had increased ATP citrate lyase (ACLY) activity and reduced acetyl-CoA carboxylase (ACC) phosphorylation but no increased hepatic TG. On the other hand, L21 mice had reduced hepatic sequestosome 1 (SQSTM1/p62) levels. Increased high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol and hepatic apolipoprotein A-1 (ApoA-1) expression were found exclusively in L21.

Significance: The present study reveals that long-term hepatic lipid accumulation is induced by the history of pregnancy without lactation. On the other hand, reduced SQSTM1/p62 levels indicate that increased autophagic flux during life may prevent hepatic fat in dams subjected to lactation. Lactation after pregnancy is also obligatory for a long-term increase in maternal HDL. The present data may contribute to the understanding of the mechanisms leading to elevated cardiometabolic risk in women limited to short periods of lactation.
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January 2019