Reduction in Insulin Uncovers a Novel Effect of VEGFB on Cardiac Substrate Utilization

Rui Shang, Chae Syng Lee, Hualin Wang, Roger Dyer, Christophe Noll, André Carpentier, Ibrahim Sultan, Kari Alitalo, Robert Boushel, Bahira Hussein, Brian Rodrigues

Forskningsoutput: TidskriftsbidragArtikelVetenskapligPeer review


BACKGROUND: The heart relies heavily on external fatty acid (FA) for energy production. VEGFB (vascular endothelial growth factor B) has been shown to promote endothelial FA uptake by upregulating FA transporters. However, its impact on LPL (lipoprotein lipase)-mediated lipolysis of lipoproteins, a major source of FA for cardiac use, is unknown. METHODS: VEGFB transgenic (Tg) rats were generated by using the α-myosin heavy chain promoter to drive cardiomyocyte-specific overexpression. To measure coronary LPL activity, Langendorff hearts were perfused with heparin. In vivo positron emission tomography imaging with [18F]-triglyceride-fluoro-6-thia-heptadecanoic acid and [11C]-palmitate was used to determine cardiac FA uptake. Mitochondrial FA oxidation was evaluated by high-resolution respirometry. Streptozotocin was used to induce diabetes, and cardiac function was monitored using echocardiography. RESULTS: In Tg hearts, the vectorial transfer of LPL to the vascular lumen is obstructed, resulting in LPL buildup within cardiomyocytes, an effect likely due to coronary vascular development with its associated augmentation of insulin action. With insulin insufficiency following fasting, VEGFB acted unimpeded to facilitate LPL movement and increase its activity at the coronary lumen. In vivo PET imaging following fasting confirmed that VEGFB induced a greater FA uptake to the heart from circulating lipoproteins as compared with plasma-free FAs. As this was associated with augmented mitochondrial oxidation, lipid accumulation in the heart was prevented. We further examined whether this property of VEGFB on cardiac metabolism could be useful following diabetes and its associated cardiac dysfunction, with attendant loss of metabolic flexibility. In Tg hearts, diabetes inhibited myocyte VEGFB gene expression and protein secretion together with its downstream receptor signaling, effects that could explain its lack of cardioprotection. CONCLUSIONS: Our study highlights the novel role of VEGFB in LPL-derived FA supply and utilization. In diabetes, loss of VEGFB action may contribute toward metabolic inflexibility, lipotoxicity, and development of diabetic cardiomyopathy.

TidskriftArteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology
Sidor (från-till)177-191
Antal sidor15
StatusPublicerad - 1 jan. 2024
MoE-publikationstypA1 Tidskriftsartikel-refererad

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© 2024 Lippincott Williams and Wilkins. All rights reserved.


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