The Effect of Diet-Induced Obesity and Subsequent Weight Loss on Body Composition, Glucose Clearance, Metabolite Profile and Liver Amp-Activated Protein Kinase in Mice


Obesity, currently an epidemic, is a difficult disease to combat because it is marked by both a change in body weight and an underlying dysregulation in metabolism, making consistent weight loss challenging. We sought to elucidate this metabolic dysregulation resulting from diet-induced obesity (DIO) that persists through subsequent weight loss. We hypothesized that weight gain imparts a change in “metabolic set point” persisting through subsequent weight loss and that this modification may involve a persistent change in hepatic AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK), a key energy-sensing enzyme in the body. To test these hypotheses, we tracked metabolic perturbations through this period, measuring changes in hepatic AMPK. To further understand the role of AMPK we used AICAR, an AMPK activator, following DIO. Our findings established a more dynamic metabolic model of DIO and subsequent weight loss. We observed hepatic AMPK elevation following weight loss, but AICAR administration without similar dieting was unsuccessful in improving metabolic dysregulation. Our findings provide an approach to modeling DIO and subsequent dieting that can be built upon in future studies and hopefully contribute to more effective long-term treatments of obesity.