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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

The transcriptional and DNA binding activity of peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor alpha is inhibited by ethanol metabolism. A novel mechanism for the development of ethanol-induced fatty liver.

Fatty acids are ligands for the peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor alpha (PPAR alpha). Fatty acid levels are increased in liver during the metabolism of ethanol and might be expected to activate PPAR alpha. However, ethanol inhibited PPAR alpha activation of a reporter gene in H4IIEC3 hepatoma cells expressing alcohol-metabolizing enzymes but not in CV-1 cells, which lack these enzymes. Ethanol also reduced the ability of the PPAR alpha ligand WY14,643 to activate reporter constructs in the hepatoma cells or cultured rat hepatocytes. This effect of ethanol was abolished by the alcohol dehydrogenase inhibitor 4-methylpyrazole and augmented by the aldehyde dehydrogenase inhibitor cyanamide, indicating that acetaldehyde was responsible for the action of ethanol. PPAR alpha/retinoid X receptor extracted from hepatoma cells exposed to ethanol or acetaldehyde bound poorly to an oligonucleotide containing peroxisome proliferator response elements. This effect was also blocked by 4-methylpyrazole and augmented by cyanamide. Furthermore, in vitro translated PPAR alpha exposed to acetaldehyde failed to bind DNA. Thus, ethanol metabolism blocks transcriptional activation by PPAR alpha, in part due to impairment of its ability to bind DNA. This effect of ethanol may promote the development of alcoholic fatty liver and other hepatic consequences of alcohol abuse.[1]


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