Main content area

Differential metabolic and hepatic transcriptome responses of two miniature pig breeds to high dietary cholesterol

Cai, Zhaowei, Yu, Chen, Fu, Danting, Pan, Yongming, Huang, Junjie, Rong, Yili, Deng, Liqun, Chen, Jiaojiao, Chen, Minli
Life sciences 2020 v.250 pp. 117514
Tibetan (swine breed), Western blotting, bile acids, biochemical pathways, blood lipids, blood serum, cholesterol, cholesterol metabolism, diet, disease models, fasting, fatty liver, gene expression, genes, genetic background, glucose, human diseases, hypercholesterolemia, hypertension, immunohistochemistry, inflammation, insulin, insulin resistance, liver, liver function, miniature swine, obesity, quantitative polymerase chain reaction, reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction, sequence analysis, swine, transcriptome, transcriptomics
Pigs are increasingly used as human metabolic disease models; however, there is insufficient research on breed-related genetic background differences. This study aimed to investigate the differential metabolic responses to high-fat and high-cholesterol (HFC) diet-induced non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) of two miniature pig breeds and explore the molecular mechanisms involved.Male Wuzhishan (WZSP) and Tibetan pigs (TP) were randomly fed either a standard or an HFC diet for 24 weeks. Weight, serum lipids, bile acid, insulin resistance, liver function, liver histology, and hepatic lipid deposition were determined. RNA-Seq was used to detect the hepatic gene expression profiles. Western blot, immunohistochemistry, and qRT-PCR were used to detect the lipid and glucose metabolism-related gene expressions.The HFC diet caused obesity, hypertension, severe hypercholesterolemia, liver injury, increased hepatocellular steatosis and inflammation, and significantly increased serum insulin levels in both pig breeds. This diet led to higher serum and hepatic cholesterol level concentrations in WZSP and elevated fasting glucose levels in TP. Transcriptome analysis revealed that the genes controlling hepatic cholesterol metabolism and the inflammatory response were consistently regulated; lipid metabolism and insulin signaling related genes were uniquely regulated by the HFC diet in the WZSP and TP, respectively.Our study demonstrated that the genetic background affects profoundly pigs' metabolic and hepatic responses to an HFC diet. These results deepened our understanding of the molecular mechanisms of HFC diet-induced NAFLD and provided a foundation for selecting the appropriate pig breeds for metabolic studies in the future.