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Determining the role of the LPI/GPR55 system in the development of obesity and associated cardiovascular consequences.

Hair, Steven C.


Steven C. Hair


Phil Whitfield


Obesity has reached worldwide epidemic proportions and with this increased incidence of obesity, comes an increase in incidence of the comorbidities associated with obesity such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease (CVD). The underlying mechanisms which connect these diseases are still poorly understood. One system which has been shown to be up-regulated in the setting of obesity and diabetes is that of the G-protein coupled receptor-55/Lysophosphatidylinositol (GPR55/LPI). Despite being upregulated in the setting of obesity, the function of GPR55 in obesity and other disease states remains elusive. Therefore, the present study aimed to 1) investigate the role of GPR55 in obesity by characterising the phenotype of the GPR55 knockout (GPR55-/-) mouse when challenged with a high fat diet (HFD) intervention, 2) elucidate any effect of the GPR55 knockout and HFD intervention on the myocardial infarct size sustained following a period of ischaemia/reperfusion (I/R) and 3) make use of an in vitro model to elucidate the mechanisms by which changes occur in the adipose tissue of mice fed a HFD. GPR55-/- mice fed a HFD for 12-weeks gained significantly more weight in the form of fat mass, compared to wild-type (WT) controls and consequently become obese. Obese GPR55-/- mice displayed hypertrophic adipose tissue concurrent with the significant dysregulation of plasma lipids, increases in specific circulating LPI species, increased lipid deposition within the liver and a change in adipose tissue gene expression profile. These changes were not observed in GPR55-/- mice fed a standard diet or WT mice fed a HFD. Following a period of I/R, the myocardial infarct size in hearts from WT HFD fed mice was significantly smaller than in hearts from WT standard diet fed mice. This reduction in infarct size due to HFD intervention was not dependent on RISK-pathway activation and was not observed in hearts from GPR55-/- mice, therefore demonstrating that the cardio-protective effect of a HFD on infarct size is dependent on GPR55. In vitro studies using 3T3-L1 cells determined that the changes in adipose tissue gene expression of HFD fed mice was not due to enhanced stimulation with LPI or via hypoxic mechanisms. The results of these studies demonstrate that GPR55 has an anti-obesity function in vivo and also mediates the cardio-protective effect of a HFD on myocardial infarct size, through currently unknown mechanisms.


HAIR, S.C. 2018. Determining the role of the LPI/GPR55 system in the development of obesity and associated cardiovascular consequences. Robert Gordon University, PhD thesis.

Thesis Type Thesis
Publication Date Mar 1, 2018
Deposit Date Sep 4, 2018
Publicly Available Date Sep 4, 2018
Keywords Myocardial ischaemia; Reperfusion; GPR55; Lysophosphatidylinositol; Obesity
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