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Soyeon Kwon 1 Article
Basic Research
Extracellular Vimentin Alters Energy Metabolism And Induces Adipocyte Hypertrophy
Ji-Hae Park, Soyeon Kwon, Young Mi Park
Diabetes Metab J. 2024;48(2):215-230.   Published online September 26, 2023
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4093/dmj.2022.0332
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Background
Previous studies have reported that oxidative stress contributes to obesity characterized by adipocyte hypertrophy. However, mechanism has not been studied extensively. In the current study, we evaluated role of extracellular vimentin secreted by oxidized low-density lipoprotein (oxLDL) in energy metabolism in adipocytes.
Methods
We treated 3T3-L1-derived adipocytes with oxLDL and measured vimentin which was secreted in the media. We evaluated changes in uptake of glucose and free fatty acid, expression of molecules functioning in energy metabolism, synthesis of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and lactate, markers for endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress and autophagy in adipocytes treated with recombinant vimentin.
Results
Adipocytes secreted vimentin in response to oxLDL. Microscopic evaluation revealed that vimentin treatment induced increase in adipocyte size and increase in sizes of intracellular lipid droplets with increased intracellular triglyceride. Adipocytes treated with vimentin showed increased uptake of glucose and free fatty acid with increased expression of plasma membrane glucose transporter type 1 (GLUT1), GLUT4, and CD36. Vimentin treatment increased transcription of GLUT1 and hypoxia-inducible factor 1α (Hif-1α) but decreased GLUT4 transcription. Adipose triglyceride lipase (ATGL), peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor γ (PPARγ), sterol regulatory element-binding protein 1 (SREBP1), diacylglycerol O-acyltransferase 1 (DGAT1) and 2 were decreased by vimentin treatment. Markers for ER stress were increased and autophagy was impaired in vimentin-treated adipocytes. No change was observed in synthesis of ATP and lactate in the adipocytes treated with vimentin.
Conclusion
We concluded that extracellular vimentin regulates expression of molecules in energy metabolism and promotes adipocyte hypertrophy. Our results show that vimentin functions in the interplay between oxidative stress and metabolism, suggesting a mechanism by which adipocyte hypertrophy is induced in oxidative stress.

Diabetes Metab J : Diabetes & Metabolism Journal