The PPARα/CYP4A14 bile acid pathway is associated with lipid metabolism disorders caused by low birth weight with high-fat diet

  • Fei Zhou Department of Internal Medicine, Hebei Medical University, Shijiazhuang, China; Key Laboratory of Metabolic Diseases, Hebei General Hospital, Shijiazhuang, China
  • Linquan Yang Key Laboratory of Metabolic Diseases, Hebei General Hospital, Shijiazhuang, China
  • Wenwen Sun Department of Internal Medicine, North China University of Science and Technology, Tangshan, China
  • Xing Wang Key Laboratory of Metabolic Diseases, Hebei General Hospital, Shijiazhuang, China
  • Na Guo Key Laboratory of Metabolic Diseases, Hebei General Hospital, Shijiazhuang, China
  • Huijuan Ma Department of Internal Medicine, Hebei Medical University, Shijiazhuang, China; Key Laboratory of Metabolic Diseases, Hebei General Hospital, Shijiazhuang, China; Department of Endocrinology, Hebei General Hospital, Shijiazhuang, China
  • Linlin Yang Key Laboratory of Metabolic Diseases, Hebei General Hospital, Shijiazhuang, China
Keywords: LBW, lipid metabolism disorders, ACOX2, bile acid, LC-MS/MS


Purpose: To investigate possible mechanisms underlying the greater susceptibility of lipid metabolism disorders in low birth weight (LBW) mice fed with high-fat diets (HFDs).

Methods: LBW mice model was established by using the pregnancy malnutrition method. Male pups were selected from LBW and normal-birth weight (NBW) offspring at random. After 3 weeks of weaning, all offspring mice were fed with HFD. Serum triglycerides (TGs), cholesterol (TC), low density lipoprotein (LDL-C), total bile acid (TAB), non-esterified fatty acid (NEFA), and mice fecal bile acid profiles were measured. Lipid deposition in liver sections was visualized by Oil Red O staining. The weight ratio of liver, muscle, and adiposity was calculated. Tandem mass tag (TMT) combined with LC-MS/MS was used to determine the differentially expressed proteins (DEPs) of liver tissue in two groups. Bioinformatics was used for further analysis of DEPs to screen key target proteins, and then Western Blot (WB) and reverse transcription-quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) were performed to validate the expressions of DEPs.

Results: LBW mice fed with HFD showed more severe lipid metabolism disorders in the childhood. In contrast to the NBW group, the serum bile acids and fecal ω-muricholic acid (ω-MCA) levels in the LBW group were significantly lower. LC-MS/MS analysis showed that downregulated proteins were associated with lipid metabolism, and further analysis found that these proteins are mainly concentrated in peroxisome proliferation-activated receptor (PPAR) and primary bile acid synthesis signaling pathways and are involved in cellular processes and metabolic processes through binding and catalytic functions. Bioinformatics analysis indicated that the level of Cytochrome P450 Family 46 Subfamily A Member 1 (CYP46A1), PPARα, key factors of cholesterol metabolism and bile acid synthesis, as well as downstream molecules Cytochrome P450 Family 4 Subfamily A Member 14 (CYP4A14), and Acyl-Coenzyme A Oxidase 2 (ACOX2) are markedly different in the liver of LBW individuals fed with HFD, and confirmed by WB and RT-qPCR.

Conclusion: LBW mice are more prone to dyslipidemia probably due to downregulated bile acid metabolism-related PPARα/CYP4A14 pathway, resulting in insufficient metabolism of cholesterol to bile acids, which, in turn, leads to elevated blood cholesterol.


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How to Cite
Zhou F., Yang L., Sun W., Wang X., Guo N., Ma H., & Yang L. (2023). The PPARα/CYP4A14 bile acid pathway is associated with lipid metabolism disorders caused by low birth weight with high-fat diet. Food & Nutrition Research, 67.
Original Articles