Transgenic Overexpression of Ctrp3 Prevents Alcohol-Induced Hepatic Triglyceride Accumulation

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This study tested the ability of a novel adipose tissue derived cytokine, C1q TNF-related protein-3 (CTRP3), to prevent alcohol-induced hepatic lipid accumulation, or alcoholic fatty liver disease (ALD). Previous work has demonstrated that CTRP3 is effective at preventing high-fat diet-induced fatty liver; however, the potential of CTRP3 to inhibit ALD has not been explored. To test the potential protective effects of CTRP3, transgenic mice overexpressing CTRP3 (Tg) or wild-type littermates (WT) were subjected to one of two different models of ALD. In the first model, known as the NIAAA model, mice were fed control or alcohol-containing liquid diets (5% vol/vol) for 10 days followed by a single gavage of ethanol (5 g/kg). In the second model, the chronic model, mice were fed control or alcohol-containing diets for 6 wk with no gavage. This study found that CTRP3 reduced triglyceride accumulation in the chronic model of alcohol consumption by ~50%, whereas no reduction was observed in the NIAAA model. Further analysis of isolated primary hepatocytes from WT and Tg mice demonstrated that CTRP3 increased oxygen consumption in the presence of fatty acids, indicating that CTRP3 increases hepatic fatty acid utilization. In conclusion, this study indicates that CTRP3 attenuates hepatic triglyceride accumulation in response to long-term chronic, but not short-term, alcohol consumption.