Simple Summary Cachexia occurs frequently in cancer patients with deep metabolic derangements. The browning of adipose tissue promotes thermogenesis and energy expenditure and, in cancer, has been considered a major determinant of adipose tissue atrophy. We evaluated the molecular phenotype of this phenomenon in the subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) of newly diagnosed gastrointestinal cancer patients compared to controls. We observed that the modulation of different markers of the browning of SAT in gastrointestinal cancer and, in particular, pancreatic cancer showed significant changes in UCP1 and PGC1 alpha; PGC1 alpha was highly expressed in cachectic patients. Our study highlights the relevance of browning in patients with cancer, in particular in those with pancreatic cancer. Understanding the browning phenomenon may allow us to counteract these metabolic alterations before the development of severe cachexia, which is characterized by deep adipose and muscle depletion, negatively affecting survival and quality of life. We assessed the molecular phenotype of the browning of white adipose tissue in newly diagnosed cancer patients and controls undergoing surgery for gastrointestinal tumors and for non-malignant diseases, respectively. We collected subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) samples and using RT-PCR, we analyzed the expression of markers of browning and using Western blot the protein levels of UCP1 and PGC1 alpha. The Ucp1 mRNA levels were lower in cancer patients vs. controls (p = 0.01), whereas Cidea and Tmem26 mRNA levels were higher in cancer patients. We found higher PGC1 alpha protein levels in patients vs. controls, while no differences were seen for UCP1. The Ucp1 expression was lower in cachectic and non-cachectic patients vs. controls, whereas Cidea expression was higher in cachectic and non-cachectic patients vs. controls. Pgc1 alpha mRNA levels were higher in cachectic vs. non-cachectic patients (p = 0.03) vs. controls (p = 0.016). According to type of tumors, we did not observe differences in Cidea expression, whereas Pgc1 alpha was higher in pancreatic cancer vs. colorectal and vs. controls. We observed the lower expression of Ucp1 in pancreatic and colorectal cancer vs. controls. We documented higher UCP1 protein levels in pancreatic cancer patients vs. colorectal (p = 0.002) and vs. controls (p = 0.031). PGC1 alpha protein levels were higher in pancreatic cancer patients vs. controls. Different markers of the browning of SAT are modulated, and pancreatic cancer showed changes in UCP1 and PGC1 alpha; PGC1 alpha was highly expressed in cachectic patients, with clinical implications that should be further clarified.

Evaluation of Browning Markers in Subcutaneous Adipose Tissue of Newly Diagnosed Gastrointestinal Cancer Patients with and without Cachexia

Elisabetta Ferraro;
2022-01-01

Abstract

Simple Summary Cachexia occurs frequently in cancer patients with deep metabolic derangements. The browning of adipose tissue promotes thermogenesis and energy expenditure and, in cancer, has been considered a major determinant of adipose tissue atrophy. We evaluated the molecular phenotype of this phenomenon in the subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) of newly diagnosed gastrointestinal cancer patients compared to controls. We observed that the modulation of different markers of the browning of SAT in gastrointestinal cancer and, in particular, pancreatic cancer showed significant changes in UCP1 and PGC1 alpha; PGC1 alpha was highly expressed in cachectic patients. Our study highlights the relevance of browning in patients with cancer, in particular in those with pancreatic cancer. Understanding the browning phenomenon may allow us to counteract these metabolic alterations before the development of severe cachexia, which is characterized by deep adipose and muscle depletion, negatively affecting survival and quality of life. We assessed the molecular phenotype of the browning of white adipose tissue in newly diagnosed cancer patients and controls undergoing surgery for gastrointestinal tumors and for non-malignant diseases, respectively. We collected subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) samples and using RT-PCR, we analyzed the expression of markers of browning and using Western blot the protein levels of UCP1 and PGC1 alpha. The Ucp1 mRNA levels were lower in cancer patients vs. controls (p = 0.01), whereas Cidea and Tmem26 mRNA levels were higher in cancer patients. We found higher PGC1 alpha protein levels in patients vs. controls, while no differences were seen for UCP1. The Ucp1 expression was lower in cachectic and non-cachectic patients vs. controls, whereas Cidea expression was higher in cachectic and non-cachectic patients vs. controls. Pgc1 alpha mRNA levels were higher in cachectic vs. non-cachectic patients (p = 0.03) vs. controls (p = 0.016). According to type of tumors, we did not observe differences in Cidea expression, whereas Pgc1 alpha was higher in pancreatic cancer vs. colorectal and vs. controls. We observed the lower expression of Ucp1 in pancreatic and colorectal cancer vs. controls. We documented higher UCP1 protein levels in pancreatic cancer patients vs. colorectal (p = 0.002) and vs. controls (p = 0.031). PGC1 alpha protein levels were higher in pancreatic cancer patients vs. controls. Different markers of the browning of SAT are modulated, and pancreatic cancer showed changes in UCP1 and PGC1 alpha; PGC1 alpha was highly expressed in cachectic patients, with clinical implications that should be further clarified.
Molfino, Alessio; Belli, Roberta; Imbimbo, Giovanni; Carletti, Raffaella; Ida Amabile, Maria; Tambaro, Federica; di Gioia, Cira R. T.; Belloni, Elena; Ferraro, Elisabetta; Nigri, Giuseppe; Muscaritoli, Maurizio
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11568/1160250
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