Skip Navigation LinksHome > July 11, 2008 - Volume 22 - Issue 11 > Effect of atazanavir and ritonavir on the differentiation an...
AIDS:
doi: 10.1097/QAD.0b013e3283021a4f
Basic Science: Concise Communications

Effect of atazanavir and ritonavir on the differentiation and adipokine secretion of human subcutaneous and omental preadipocytes

Jones, Simon Pa; Waitt, Catrionaa; Sutton, Robertb; Back, David Ja; Pirmohamed, Munira

Free Access
Article Outline
Collapse Box

Author Information

From the aDepartment of Pharmacology and Therapeutics, UK

bDepartment of Surgery, The University of Liverpool, Liverpool, UK.

Received 12 July, 2007

Revised 10 March, 2008

Accepted 18 March, 2008

Correspondence to Prof. Munir Pirmohamed, Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics, The University of Liverpool, Sherrington Building, Ashton Street, Liverpool L69 3GE, UK. Tel: +44 151 794 5549; fax: +44 151 794 5540; e-mail: munirp@liv.ac.uk

Collapse Box

Abstract

Background: Treatment of HIV with some protease inhibitors has been associated with dyslipidemia, insulin resistance and fat redistribution. It has been hypothesized that some protease inhibitors may alter the differentiation of subcutaneous and visceral adipocytes in a disparate manner. The aim of this study was to investigate whether isolated human preadipocytes display regio-specific sensitivity to the effects of ritonavir and atazanavir by examining differentiation, as well as adipokine secretion, following a 10-day drug exposure.

Methods: Paired subcutaneous and omental human preadipocytes (n = 8) were induced to differentiate for 6 days, before being exposed to atazanavir or ritonavir (1–10 μmol/l) for 10 days. Lipid metabolism was assessed by Oil Red O staining and glycerol 3-phosphate dehydrogenase enzyme activity, whereas leptin and adiponectin secretion were assessed by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay.

Results: There was no difference in differentiation between subcutaneous and omental adipocytes. Repeated exposure to ritonavir, but not to atazanavir, led to significant reductions in adipocyte differentiation. There were no differences in adiponectin secretion for any of the atazanavir treatments in both subcutaneous and omental adipocytes, whereas significant reductions were evident at 10 μmol/l for ritonavir exposed subcutaneous adipocytes. In contrast, both atazanavir and ritonavir were associated with altered leptin secretion.

Conclusions: Ritonavir, but not atazanavir exposure, can inhibit differentiation of subcutaneous and omental adipocytes to a similar extent. Regio-specific differences, however, were apparent for adiponectin and leptin secretion. The role of region-specific alterations in adipokine secretion and apoptosis in the pathogenesis of HIV-lipodystrophy requires further attention.

Back to Top | Article Outline

Introduction

Adipose tissue is well known to play a key pathological role in the development of metabolic disorders such as type 2 diabetes (T2D), dyslipidemia, polycystic ovary syndrome and more recently, HIV-associated lipodystrophy [1,2]. The anatomical location of adipose tissue, rather than fat mass per se, appears to be more predictive of the development and severity of these conditions [3,4]. These relationships have been largely attributed to the heterogeneity of adipose tissue [5], as fat cells isolated from the omental depot differ in size, their response to catecholamine and insulin stimulation, as well as in their susceptibility to apoptosis compared to subcutaneous adipocytes [6–8]. To date, however, very little work has been done to define how regio-specific differences impact on the pathogenesis of HIV-associated lipodystrophy, despite the fact that lipodystrophy is characterised by depletion of the subcutaneous depot and potential enlargement of the omental depot [2,9].

Regio-specific differences in the secretion of adipokines, such as leptin, tumour necrosis factor (TNF-alpha), resistin, interleukin-6 (IL-6) and adiponectin have also been identified [4,10]. Leptin plays a key role in the control of both appetite and energy control, with subcutaneous adipocytes secreting more leptin than omental adipocytes [11]. The same trend is also evident for adiponectin [12], an adipokine that appears to be strongly associated with the metabolic abnormalities of lipodystrophy [13,14]. Protease inhibitors have also been shown to alter adipokine secretion from murine cell lines [15] but it is not known whether protease inhibitors have species-specific or region-specific effects on subcutaneous and visceral fat depots.

To date, only a few studies have examined the effects of protease inhibitors on human adipocytes [16,17]. It has recently been shown that ritonavir (RTV) inhibits the differentiation of subcutaneous adipocytes and modulates adipokine expression [16], which is consistent with its known effects on lipid dysregulation. The effect of atazanavir (ATV), a relatively newer compound, which in vivo does not appear to be associated with lipid or glucose abnormalities [18], however currently remains unknown. Similarly, there have been no studies comparing the effects of any protease inhibitors on human adipocytes from different regions, namely the subcutaneous and omental depots. Theoretically, protease inhibitors could have disparate effects on these two depots, which could explain both the depletion of fat and potential enlargement of adipose tissue, typical manifestations of lipodystrophy. The mechanisms for this potential disparate effect remain unknown, although factors such as protein binding, blood flow and drug transports may all play a role in certain protease inhibitors preferentially changing the morphology of a given fat depot.

The aim of this study was to investigate whether isolated human preadipocytes display regio-specific sensitivity to the effects of the protease inhibitors, RTV and ATV, by examining differentiation as well as adipokine secretion following treatment for 10 days.

Back to Top | Article Outline

Methods

Patients

Omental and subcutaneous adipose tissue samples were obtained from patients undergoing elective open abdominal surgery. Participants were eight men, presumably HIV-seronegative, with a mean age of 56 ± 5.6 years (mean ± SD; range 40–65 years), and a mean weight of 78 ± 5.2 kg (BMI 23 ± 1 kg/m2). All patients underwent general anaesthesia and had fasted for at least 12 h prior to surgery. No patients were taking diabetic medications or drugs known to impact on lipolysis or adiponectin secretion. The study was approved by the Liverpool Local Research Ethics Committee and all patients gave written informed consent.

Back to Top | Article Outline
Preadipocyte isolation

The isolation and differentiation of preadipocytes was performed according to the method described by Hauner et al. [19]. The adipose tissue was placed in saline and rapidly transported to the laboratory where it was dissected from skin and blood vessels and finely diced in a laminar air-flow cabinet. Following three washes with saline, the adipose tissue was digested with a freshly prepared collagenase solution (2 mg/ml, pH 7.4), containing 4% dialysed bovine serum albumin (BSA, Fraction V). Following a ∼30 min incubation in a shaking water bath at 37°C, the disrupted tissue was filtered through a nylon filter to separate the adipose tissue from the connective fibrous tissue. The remaining cell pellet was resuspended in 10 ml of erythrocyte lysis buffer (0.154 mol/l NH4Cl, 5.7 mM K2HPO4, 0.1 mM EDTA, pH 7.3) prior to being resuspended in 10ml of DMEM/F12 medium (Invitrogen, Paisley, Scotland). After an additional centrifugation step, the preadipocyte cell fraction was resuspended in 1 ml of DMEM/F12 medium containing 10% nonheat inactivated fetal calf serum and 100 units of penicillin/streptomycin. Following 18 h of attachment, cells were washed twice with DMEM/F12 medium and re-fed a chemically defined serum-free medium (DMEM/F12) [20]. Following 6 days of culture, the cells were treated with RTV and ATV (1, 5 or 10 μmol/l) or vehicle control [methanol (0.1%)]. The media was replaced every 2–3 days until the end of the differentiation programme (day 16).

Back to Top | Article Outline
Assessment of differentiation

Differentiation was assessed on day 16 using glycerol 3-phosphate dehydrogenase (GPDH) enzyme activity as described previously [17]. In addition, the effect of the drugs on intracellular lipid accumulation was also assessed using Oil Red O staining [17].

Back to Top | Article Outline
Adipokine secretion by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay

Leptin and adiponectin concentrations were determined in the cell culture media by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) following the manufacturer's standardized protocol (R&D Systems, UK). Media was removed from cells on day 16 of adipokine differentiation (day 10 of drug exposure) and frozen at −80°C until it was processed in duplicate.

Back to Top | Article Outline
Statistical analysis

Data between treatments were examined using one-way ANOVA with Bonferoni correction on normally distributed data. Differences between vehicle controls for the subcutaneous and omental fat depots were analysed using a paired T-test (SPSS, Illinois, USA). Differences were considered significant when P < 0.05.

Back to Top | Article Outline

Results

Differentiation was quantified using the eluted Oil Red O stain (Fig. 1a). Triglyceride accumulation was not significantly different between the two fat depots (subcutaneous vs. omental: 0.10 ± 0.017 vs. 0.11 ± 0.01 optical density (OD) units). RTV (10 μmol/l) significantly decreased triglyceride accumulation in subcutaneous and omental adipocytes by 26 and 28%, respectively, whereas ATV was not associated with a decrease in either fat depot. Differentiation was also quantified by GPDH enzyme activity, which revealed a significant reduction with RTV. At a concentration of 5 and 10 μmol/l respectively (Fig. 1b), RTV inhibited GPDH activity in subcutaneous cells by 40 and 45%, respectively (P < 0.05), when compared with vehicle control. A similar effect was also obtained in the omental cells with RTV. ATV had no effect on GPDH activity in both depots, consistent with the results of the Oil Red O staining (Fig. 1a).

Fig. 1
Fig. 1
Image Tools
Back to Top | Article Outline
Adipokine secretion

Adiponectin secretion was significantly higher in subcutaneous than in omental adipocytes during differentiation. Specifically, in vehicle-treated control subcutaneous cells, adiponectin was 32% higher than in omental cells (P < 0.001), a trend that was apparent for all treatments (Fig. 2a). No differences in secretion were evident at any concentration of ATV in either subcutaneous or omental adipocytes. In contrast, RTV (10 μmol/l) led to a reduction in adiponectin secretion in subcutaneous adipocytes. There was no effect on adiponectin secretion for omental adipocytes following exposure to RTV. Leptin secretion was significantly higher in the vehicle control subcutaneous adipocytes than in the omental vehicle control (P < 0.01) (Fig. 2b) by 40%. Both RTV and ATV increased leptin secretion in subcutaneous cells. In omental cells, however, while RTV led to small decreases in leptin, ATV had little effect, apart from at 10 μmol/l where a significant increase was observed compared with vehicle control.

Fig. 2
Fig. 2
Image Tools
Back to Top | Article Outline

Discussion

In this study, we report that RTV, but not ATV, inhibits the differentiation of both subcutaneous and omental preadipocytes. The contrasting effects of the two protease inhibitors support recent in vitro data from murine 3T3-L1 preadipocyte line [21], as well as clinical studies, which have demonstrated that ATV has very little effect on lipid levels after 96 weeks of treatment [18]. Morphologically, cells exposed to RTV (5 and 10 μmol/l) appeared to undergo de-differentiation (data not shown) with an increased number of smaller, less lipid-laden adipocytes, consistent with previous studies in a murine cell line [22,23], as well as the morphological appearances of biopsy samples taken from patients with lipodystrophy [24].

No regio-specific differences in inhibition of differentiation were apparent between the two depots for any of the drug treatments. Whether antiretrovirals preferentially cause a loss of subcutaneous fat rather than omental fat is controversial [9]. A recent imaging study utilising both MRI and CT scans showed that both fat depots decreased in patients with lipodystrophy [9]. However, other investigations have suggested that the subcutaneous depot is preferentially depleted, whereas the omental depot remains largely unaffected [25]. While our results may suggest that both depots appear susceptible to de-differentiation, it is important to note that ex vivo, access of drugs to the omental preadipocytes is likely to be easier than witnessed in vivo, where factors such as protein binding, blood flow and drug transporters may play a key role in drug distribution.

An increasing number of studies have shown that the secretion and mRNA expression of various adipokines is altered in patients with lipodystrophy [14,26–29]. In our study, adiponectin secretion was significantly higher in subcutaneous than in omental preadipocytes, irrespective of drug exposure, supporting previous work in non-HIV infected obese patients [30]. Vernochet et al. [16] using differentiating subcutaneous preadipocytes reported that RTV, but not lopinavir or amprenavir, decreased adiponectin mRNA expression. More recently, Kim et al. [31] reported a differential effect of RTV, but not ATV on mature adipocyte cell viability, which appeared to be associated with reductions in adiponectin and increased IL-6 levels. Comparing RTV and ATV in this study indicated that the former but not the latter was associated with reduced adiponectin levels, supporting the earlier findings of Kim et al. [31]. Leptin was also found to be secreted to a greater extent in subcutaneous than in omental adipocytes, confirming earlier findings from both mature [32] and differentiating human preadipocytes [33]. Moreover, both ATV and RTV were found to alter leptin secretion, with a more marked effect evident in subcutaneous adipocytes, concentrations up to 10 μmol/l increasing leptin secretion. When examined in light of data suggesting that RTV, but not ATV, was influencing adipocyte differentiation, this concentration-related difference in leptin secretion is interesting. Potentially, if only RTV was found to increase leptin secretion, it could be suggested that this occurred as a result of a loss of cell viability leading to increased secretion from the damaged adipocyte. However, as both drugs were found to affect leptin secretion, an alternative aetiology is likely. The role of leptin in HIV-associated lipodystrophy remains complex in vivo [27,34], with discordant results being reported for both its secretion, as well as its relationship with fat redistribution and insulin sensitivity [35]. How certain protease inhibitors alter adipokine levels [36] as well as the physiological significance of such changes at a regio-specific level remains unknown [6]. It has been suggested that adiponectin may simply reflect the absolute amount of peripheral fat, as has been suggested previously for leptin [35,37]. This concept is supported by two studies indicating that in patients with HIV-associated lipodystrophy, peripheral subcutaneous rather than omental visceral fat acts as an independent contributor to adiponectin secretion and mRNA expression [14,28].

In conclusion, our data indicate that therapeutic concentrations of RTV but not ATV can inhibit differentiation to a similar extent in both subcutaneous and omental adipocytes. Regio-specific differences however were apparent for adiponectin and leptin secretion. The role of regio-specific alterations in adipokine secretion and apoptosis in the pathogenesis of HIV-lipodystrophy requires further attention.

Back to Top | Article Outline

Acknowledgements

We are grateful to Prof. Peter Arner from the Karolinska Institute for assistance in the culture techniques reported within this paper. This work was supported by research grants from Bristol Myers Squibb, UK. The investigators would like to thank all of the patients who participated in this study. S.P.J. and C.W. conducted the experiments and analysis of the data. R.S. was involved in the collection of the adipocyte samples. D.J.B. and M.P. designed and supervised the study. S.P.J. wrote the manuscript with input from all the authors. Dr Jones is now an employee of Bristol Myers Squibb Co., UK.

Back to Top | Article Outline

References

1. Bergman RN, Van Citters GW, Mittelman SD, Dea MK, Hamilton-Wessler M, Kim SP, Ellmerer M. Central role of the adipocyte in the metabolic syndrome. J Investig Med 2001; 49:119–126.

2. Carr A, Samaras K, Burton S, Law M, Freund J, Chisholm DJ, Cooper DA. Fatigue effects on muscle excitability. AIDS 1998; 12:F51–F58.

3. Ahima RS, Flier JS. Adipose tissue as an endocrine organ. Trends Endocrinol Metab 2000; 11:327–332.

4. Wajchenberg BL, Giannella-Neto D, da Silva ME, Santos RF. Depot-specific hormonal characteristics of subcutaneous and visceral adipose tissue and their relation to the metabolic syndrome. Horm Metab Res 2002; 34:616–621.

5. Tchkonia T, Giorgadze N, Pirtskhalava T, Tchoukalova Y, Karagiannides I, Forse RA, et al. Fat depot origin affects adipogenesis in primary cultured and cloned human preadipocytes. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol 2002; 282:R1286–R1296.

6. Arner P. The adipocyte in insulin resistance: key molecules and the impact of the thiazolidinediones. Trends Endocrinol Metab 2003; 14:137–145.

7. Edens NK, Fried SK, Kral JG, Hirsch J, Leibel RL. In vitro lipid synthesis in human adipose tissue from three abdominal sites. Am J Physiol 1993; 265(3 Pt 1):E374–E379.

8. Niesler CU, Siddle K, Prins JB. Human preadipocytes display a depot-specific susceptibility to apoptosis. Diabetes 1998; 47:1365–1368.

9. Mallon PW, Miller J, Cooper DA, Carr A. Prospective evaluation of the effects of antiretroviral therapy on body composition in HIV-1-infected men starting therapy. AIDS 2003; 17:971–979.

10. Lihn AS, Bruun JM, He G, Pedersen SB, Jensen PF, Richelsen B. Lower expression of adiponectin mRNA in visceral adipose tissue in lean and obese subjects. Mol Cell Endocrinology 2004; 219:9–15.

11. Altmann SW, Timans JC, Rock FL, Bazan JF, Kastelein RA. Expression and purification of a synthetic human obese gene product. Protein Expr Purif 1995; 6:722–726.

12. Halleux CM, Takahashi M, Delporte ML, Detry R, Funahashi T, Matsuzawa Y, Brichard SM. Secretion of adiponectin and regulation of apM1 gene expression in human visceral adipose tissue. Secretion of adiponectin and regulation of apM1 gene expression in human visceral adipose tissue. Biochem Biophys Res Commun 2001; 288:1102–1107.

13. Mynarcik D, Wei LX, Komaroff E, Ferris R, McNurlan M, Gelato M. Loss of subcutaneous adipose tissue in HIV-associated lipodystrophy is not due to accelerated apoptosis. J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr 2005; 38:53–56.

14. Addy CL, Gavrila A, Tsiodras S, Brodovicz K, Karchmer AW, Mantzoros CS. Hypoadiponectinemia is associated with insulin resistance, hypertriglyceridemia, and fat redistribution in human immunodeficiency virus-infected patients treated with highly active antiretroviral therapy. J Clin Endocrinol Metab 2003; 88:627–636.

15. Jones SP, Janneh O, Back DJ, Pirmohamed M. Altered adipokine response in murine 3T3-F442A adipocytes treated with protease inhibitors and nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors. Antivir Ther 2005; 10:207–213.

16. Vernochet C, Azoulay S, Duval D, Guedj R, Cottrez F, Vidal H, Ailhaud G, Dani C. Human immunodeficiency virus protease inhibitors accumulate into cultured human adipocytes and alter expression of adipocytokines. J Biol Chem 2005; 280:2238–2243.

17. Wentworth JM, Burris TP, Chatterjee VK. HIV protease inhibitors block human preadipocyte differentiation, but not via the PPARgamma/RXR heterodimer. J Endocrinol 2000; 164:R7–R10.

18. Johnson M, Grinsztejn B, Rodriguez C, Coco J, Dejesus E, Lazzarin A, et al. Atazanavir plus ritonavir or saquinavir, and lopinavir/ritonavir in patients experiencing multiple virological failures. AIDS 2005; 19:153–162.

19. Hauner H, Skurk T, Wabitsch M. Cultures of human adipose precursor cells. Methods Mol Biol 2001; 155:239–247.

20. Hauner H, Entenmann G, Wabitsch M, Gaillard D, Ailhaud G, Negrel R, Pfeiffer EF. Promoting effect of glucocorticoids on the differentiation of human adipocyte precursor cells cultured in a chemically defined medium. J Clin Invest 1989; 84:1663–1670.

21. Parker RA, Flint OP, Mulvey R, Elosua C, Wang F, Fenderson W, Wang S, Yang WP, Noor MA. Endoplasmic reticulum stress links dyslipidemia to inhibition of proteasome activity and glucose transport by HIV protease inhibitors. Mol Pharmacol 2005; 67:1909–1919.

22. Dowell P, Flexner C, Kwiterovich PO, Lane MD. Suppression of preadipocyte differentiation and promotion of adipocyte death by HIV protease inhibitors. J Biol Chem 2000; 275:41325–41332.

23. Jones SP, Janneh O, Maher B, Khoo S, Back D, Pirmohamed M. Antivir Ther 2002; 10:207–213.

24. Bastard JP, Caron M, Vidal H, Jan V, Auclair M, Vigouroux C, et al. Association between altered expression of adipogenic factor SREBP1 in lipoatrophic adipose tissue from HIV-1-infected patients and abnormal adipocyte differentiation and insulin resistance. Lancet 2002; 359:1026–1031.

25. Bacchetti P, Gripshover B, Grunfeld C, Heymsfield S, McCreath H, Osmond D, et al. Genetic characterization of full-length HIV type 1 genomes from 3 infected paid blood donors in Henan, China. J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr 2005; 40:121–131.

26. Gougeon ML, Penicaud L, Fromenty B, Leclercq P, Viard JP, Capeau J. Adipocytes targets and actors in the pathogenesis of HIV-associated lipodystrophy and metabolic alterations. Antivir Ther 2004; 9:161–177.

27. Lagathu C, Kim M, Maachi M, Vigouroux C, Cervera P, Capeau J, et al. HIV antiretroviral treatment alters adipokine expression and insulin sensitivity of adipose tissue in vitro and in vivo. Biochimie 2005; 87:65–71.

28. Lihn AS, Richelsen B, Pedersen SB, Haugaard SB, Rathje GS, Madsbad S, Andersen O. Increased expression of TNF-alpha, IL-6, and IL-8 in HALS: implications for reduced adiponectin expression and plasma levels. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab 2003; 285:E1072–E1080.

29. Lindegaard B, Keller P, Bruunsgaard H, Gerstoft J, Pedersen BK. Low plasma level of adiponectin is associated with stavudine treatment and lipodystrophy in HIV-infected patients. Clin Exp Immunol 2004; 135:273–279.

30. Lihn AS, Pedersen SB, Richelsen B. Adiponectin: action, regulation and association to insulin sensitivity. Obes Rev 2005; 6:13–21.

31. Kim R, Wilson C, Wabitsh M, Lazar M, Steppan C. HIV protease inhibitor-specific alterations in human adipocyte differentiation and metabolism. Obesity (Silver Spring) 2006; 14:994–1002.

32. van Harmelen V, Reynisdottir S, Eriksson P, Thorne A, Hoffstedt J, Lonnqvist F, Arner P. Leptin secretion from subcutaneous and visceral adipose tissue in women. Diabetes 1998; 47:913–917.

33. van Harmelen V, Dicker A, Ryden M, Hauner H, Lonnqvist F, Naslund E, Arner P. Increased lipolysis and decreased leptin production by human omental as compared with subcutaneous preadipocytes. Diabetes 2002; 51:2029–2036.

34. Vigouroux C, Maachi M, Nguyen TH, Coussieu C, Gharakhanian S, Funahashi T, et al. Serum adipocytokines are related to lipodystrophy and metabolic disorders in HIV-infected men under antiretroviral therapy. AIDS 2003; 17:1503–1511.

35. Estrada V, Serrano-Rios M, Martinez Larrad MT, Villar NG, Gonzalez Lopez A, Tellez MJ, Fernandez C. Leptin and adipose tissue maldistribution in HIV-infected male patients with predominant fat loss treated with antiretroviral therapy. J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr 2002; 29:32–40.

36. Xu A, Yin S, Wong L, Chan KW, Lam KS. Adiponectin ameliorates dyslipidemia induced by the human immunodeficiency virus protease inhibitor ritonavir in mice. Endocrinology 2004; 145:487–494.

37. Jan V, Cervera P, Maachi M, Baudrimont M, Kim M, Vidal H, Girard PM, Levan P, Rozenbaum W, Lombes A, Capeau J, Bastard JP. Altered fat differentiation and adipocytokine expression are inter-related and linked to morphological changes and insulin resistance in HIV-1-infected lipodystrophic patients. Antivir Ther 2004; 9:555–564.

© 2008 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.

Login