The G Protein-Coupled Receptor FFAR2 Promotes Internalization during Influenza A Virus Entry. Guangwen Wang;Li Jiang;Jinliang Wang;Jie Zhang;Fandi Kong;Qibing Li;Ya Yan;Shanyu Huang;Yuhui Zhao;Libin Liang;Junping Li;Nan Sun;Yuzhen Hu;Wenjun Shi;Guohua Deng;Pucheng Chen;Liling Liu;Xianying Zeng;Guobin Tian;Zhigao Bu;Hualan Chen;Chengjun Li. 2019. J Virol. 94. PMID: 31694949

Influenza A virus (IAV) coopts numerous host factors to complete its replication cycle. Here, we identify free fatty acid receptor 2 (FFAR2) as a cofactor for IAV entry into host cells. We found that downregulation of FFAR2 or Ffar2 expression significantly reduced the replication of IAV in A549 or RAW 264.7 cells. The treatment of A549 cells with small interfering RNA (siRNA) targeting FFAR2 or the FFAR2 pathway agonists 2-(4-chlorophenyl)-3-methyl-N-(thiazol-2-yl)butanamide (4-CMTB) and compound 58 (Cmp58) [(S)-2-(4-chlorophenyl)-3,3-dimethyl-N-(5-phenylthiazol-2-yl)butanamide] dramatically inhibited the nuclear accumulation of viral nucleoprotein (NP) at early time points postinfection, indicating that FFAR2 functions in the early stage of the IAV replication cycle. FFAR2 downregulation had no effect on the expression of sialic acid (SA) receptors on the cell membrane, the attachment of IAV to the SA receptors, or the activity of the viral ribonucleoprotein (vRNP) complex. Rather, the amount of internalized IAVs was significantly reduced in FFAR2-knocked-down or 4-CMTB- or Cmp58-treated A549 cells. Further studies showed that FFAR2 associated with β-arrestin1 and that β-arrestin1 interacted with the β2-subunit of the AP-2 complex (AP2B1), the essential adaptor of the clathrin-mediated endocytosis pathway. Notably, siRNA knockdown of either β-arrestin1 or AP2B1 dramatically impaired IAV replication, and AP2B1 knockdown or treatment with Barbadin, an inhibitor targeting the β-arrestin1/AP2B1 complex, remarkably decreased the amount of internalized IAVs. Moreover, we found that FFAR2 interacted with three G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) kinases (i.e., GRK2, GRK5, and GRK6) whose downregulation inhibited IAV replication. Together, our findings demonstrate that the FFAR2 signaling cascade is important for the efficient endocytosis of IAV into host cells.IMPORTANCE To complete its replication cycle, IAV hijacks the host endocytosis machinery to invade cells. However, the underlying mechanisms of how IAV is internalized into host cells remain poorly understood, emphasizing the need to elucidate the role of host factors in IAV entry into cells. In this study, we identified FFAR2 as an important host factor for the efficient replication of both low-pathogenic and highly pathogenic IAV. We revealed that FFAR2 facilitates the internalization of IAV into target cells during the early stage of infection. Upon further characterization of the role of FFAR2-associated proteins in virus replication, we found that the FFAR2-β-arrestin1-AP2B1 signaling cascade is important for the efficient endocytosis of IAV. Our findings thus further our understanding of the biological details of IAV entry into host cells and establish FFAR2 as a potential target for antiviral drug development.
An Acetate-Specific GPCR, FFAR2, Regulates Insulin Secretion. Medha Priyadarshini;Stephanie R Villa;Miles Fuller;Barton Wicksteed;Charles R Mackay;Thierry Alquier;Vincent Poitout;Helena Mancebo;Raghavendra G Mirmira;Annette Gilchrist;Brian T Layden. 2015. Mol Endocrinol. 29. PMID: 26075576

G protein-coupled receptors have been well described to contribute to the regulation of glucose-stimulated insulin secretion (GSIS). The short-chain fatty acid-sensing G protein-coupled receptor, free fatty acid receptor 2 (FFAR2), is expressed in pancreatic β-cells, and in rodents, its expression is altered during insulin resistance. Thus, we explored the role of FFAR2 in regulating GSIS. First, assessing the phenotype of wild-type and Ffar2(-/-) mice in vivo, we observed no differences with regard to glucose homeostasis on normal or high-fat diet, with a marginally significant defect in insulin secretion in Ffar2(-/-) mice during hyperglycemic clamps. In ex vivo insulin secretion studies, we observed diminished GSIS from Ffar2(-/-) islets relative to wild-type islets under high-glucose conditions. Further, in the presence of acetate, the primary endogenous ligand for FFAR2, we observed FFAR2-dependent potentiation of GSIS, whereas FFAR2-specific agonists resulted in either potentiation or inhibition of GSIS, which we found to result from selective signaling through either Gαq/11 or Gαi/o, respectively. Lastly, in ex vivo insulin secretion studies of human islets, we observed that acetate and FFAR2 agonists elicited different signaling properties at human FFAR2 than at mouse FFAR2. Taken together, our studies reveal that FFAR2 signaling occurs by divergent G protein pathways that can selectively potentiate or inhibit GSIS in mouse islets. Further, we have identified important differences in the response of mouse and human FFAR2 to selective agonists, and we suggest that these differences warrant consideration in the continued investigation of FFAR2 as a novel type 2 diabetes target.
Identification and characterization of the bovine G protein-coupled receptor GPR41 and GPR43 genes. A Wang;Z Gu;B Heid;R M Akers;H Jiang. 2009. J Dairy Sci. 92. PMID: 19448003

Volatile fatty acids (VFA), including acetate, propionate, and butyrate, are not only a primary source of energy, but also regulate rumen development, insulin and glucagon secretion, and other physiological processes in cattle and sheep. The mechanism underlying the regulatory effects of VFA is unknown. Recent "reverse pharmacology" studies identified human G protein-coupled receptors GPR41 and GPR43 as receptors for short-chain fatty acids. It is possible that proteins similar to human GPR41 and GPR43 mediate the regulatory effects of VFA in cattle. In this study, we determined first, whether the bovine genome contains genes similar to the human GPR41 and GPR43 genes; second, whether and where these genes are expressed in cattle; and third, if the proteins encoded by these genes can be activated by acetate, propionate, and butyrate. A search of GenBank revealed bovine genomic sequences and expressed sequence tags highly similar to the human GPR41 and GPR43 DNA and cDNA sequences. The protein-coding and 5' untranslated regions of the bovine GPR41 and GPR43 mRNA were cloned and sequenced from spleen tissue. Based on these sequences, the bovine GPR41 gene contains 3 exons and its transcription is initiated at 2 leader exons, generating 2 GPR41 mRNA variants differing in the 5' untranslated region. The bovine GPR43 gene contains 2 exons and transcription of this gene is initiated from a single start site. The amino acid sequences deduced from the bovine GPR41 and GPR43 mRNA sequences are more than 75% identical to those of the human GPR41 and GPR43 and are predicted to encode 7 transmembrane domains, typical of G protein-coupled receptors. Both bovine GPR41 and GPR43 mRNA were detected in a variety of tissues including rumen and pancreas. In a cell system, interaction of the overexpressed bovine GPR41 or GPR43 protein with acetate, propionate, or butyrate inhibited luciferase reporter expression from a cyclic AMP-responsive promoter, suggesting that the bovine GPR41 and GPR43 proteins couple to Galpha(i/11). In total, these results demonstrate that the bovine genome encodes functional GPR41 and GPR43 genes and suggest that GPR41 and GPR43 may play a role in the regulatory effects of VFA in cattle.
Identification of the porcine G protein-coupled receptor 41 and 43 genes and their expression pattern in different tissues and development stages. Genlai Li;Hao Su;Zhenjin Zhou;Wen Yao. 2014. PLoS One. 9. PMID: 24840136

Short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) are not only an important energy source, but they also play a regulatory role in various physiological processes in humans and rodents. Current studies, mostly in humans and rodents, have revealed that SCFAs acted as endogenous ligands for G protein-coupled receptor GPR41 and GPR43. Whether proteins similar to human GPR41 and GPR43 mediate the regulatory effects of SCFAs in swine remains unclear to date. The aims of this study were to determine whether GPR41 and GPR43 genes are expressed in porcine different tissues; and whether the expression of GPR41 and GPR43 is tissue-specific and/or time-associated. The alignment results showed that pig chromosome 6 contained GPR41 and GPR43 genes. Reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) indicated that GPR41 and GPR43 were expressed in porcine various tissues. The 2218 bp and 1908 bp nucleotide sequence representing the full-length cDNA sequence of porcine GPR41 and GPR43 was obtained from the ileum and spleen using rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE), which were capable of encoding 335 and 329 amino acid sequences, respectively. The structure prediction revealed that porcine GPR41 and GPR43 proteins had seven putative trans-membrane domains. The real-time PCR results indicated that GPR41 and GPR43 were expressed throughout the developmental stages in a tissue-specific and time-associated manner. GPR41 and GPR43 were most highly expressed in the ileum (P<0.01) and the spleen (P<0.01), respectively. Western blot results showed that porcine GPR41 and GPR43 proteins were expressed in a variety of porcine tissues, including the spleen, ileum, colon, and adipose tissue. In situ GPR41 and GPR43 immunoreactivities were observed through immunohistochemistry in the spleen, ileum, colon, and adipose tissue. In conclusion, the pig genome encoded GPR41 and GPR43 genes, and these two genes were detected in a variety of porcine tissues and expressed in tissue-specific and time-associated manner.
Dietary Fiber Intake is Associated with Increased Colonic Mucosal GPR43+ Polymorphonuclear Infiltration in Active Crohn's Disease. Mingli Zhao;Weiming Zhu;Jianfeng Gong;Lugen Zuo;Jie Zhao;Jing Sun;Ning Li;Jieshou Li. 2015. Nutrients. 7. PMID: 26140540

G protein-coupled receptor 43/free fatty acid receptor 2 (GPR43/FFAR2) is essential for polymorphonuclear (PMN) recruitment. We investigated the expression of GPR43/FFAR2 in the colon from Crohn's disease patients and whether dietary fiber in enteral nutrition increases GPR43+ polymorphonuclear infiltration in mucosa. Segments of ascending colon and white blood cells from peripheral blood were obtained from 46 Crohn's disease patients and 10 colon cancer patients. The Crohn's disease patients were grouped by the activity of disease (active or remission) and enteral nutrition with or without dietary fiber. Histological feature, expression and location of GPR43/FFAR2 and level of tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), interleukine-6 (IL-6) and myeloperoxidase were assessed. The results of hematoxylin-eosin and immunohistochemistry staining revealed that the infiltration of immune cells, including GPR43+ PMN, was more severe in active Crohn's disease patients who consumed normal food or enteral nutrition with dietary fiber than in remission patients and colon cancer patients. This finding was supported by the results of GPR43 and myeloperoxidase expression. Active Crohn's disease (CD) patients who consumed enteral nutrition without dietary fiber exhibited severe immune cell infiltration similar to the other active CD patients, but GPR43+ PMNs were rarely observed. The level of TNF-α mRNA in active Crohn's disease patients was higher than those of the other patients. In conclusion, the use of dietary fiber in enteral nutrition by active Crohn's disease patients might increase GPR43+ PMNs infiltration in colon mucosa. This effect was not observed in Crohn's disease patients in remission.
Loss of FFAR2 promotes colon cancer by epigenetic dysregulation of inflammation suppressors. Pan Pan;Kiyoko Oshima;Yi-Wen Huang;Kimberle A Agle;William R Drobyski;Xiao Chen;Jianying Zhang;Martha M Yearsley;Jianhua Yu;Li-Shu Wang. 2018. Int J Cancer. 143. PMID: 29524208

Free fatty acid receptor 2 (FFAR2, also named GPR43), is activated by short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), such as butyrate, that are produced when gut bacteria ferment dietary fiber. FFAR2 has been suggested to regulate colonic inflammation, which is a major risk factor for the development of colon cancer and is also linked to epigenetic dysregulation in colon carcinogenesis. The current study assessed whether FFAR2, acting as an epigenetic regulator, protects against colon carcinogenesis. To mimic the mild inflammation that promotes human colon cancer, we treated mice with dextran sodium sulfate (DSS) overnight, which avoids excessive inflammation but induces mild inflammation that promotes colon carcinogenesis in the ApcMin/+ and the azoxymethane (AOM)-treated mice. Our results showed that FFAR2 deficiency promotes the development of colon adenoma in the ApcMin/+ /DSS mice and the progression of adenoma to adenocarcinoma in the AOM/DSS mice. FFAR2's downstream cAMP-PKA-CREB pathway was enhanced, leading to overexpression of histone deacetylases (HDACs) in the FFAR2-deficient mice. ChIP-qPCR analysis revealed differential binding of H3K27me3 and H3K4me3 histone marks onto the promoter regions of inflammation suppressors (e.g., sfrp1, dkk3, socs1), resulting in decreased expression of these genes in the FFAR2-deficient mice. Also, more neutrophils infiltrated into tumors and colon lamina propria of the FFAR2-deficient mice. Depletion of neutrophils blocked the progression of colon tumors. In addition, FFAR2 is required for butyrate to suppress HDAC expression and hypermethylation of inflammation suppressors. Therefore, our results suggest that FFAR2 is an epigenetic tumor suppressor that acts at multiple stages of colon carcinogenesis.
Low Expression of FFAR2 in Peripheral White Blood Cells May Be a Genetic Marker for Early Diagnosis of Acute Myocardial Infarction. Jianjun Ruan;Heyu Meng;Xue Wang;Weiwei Chen;Xiaomin Tian;Fanbo Meng. 2020. Cardiol Res Pract. 2020. PMID: 32411444

Objective: To find molecular markers for the diagnosis of acute myocardial infarction (AMI), this research further verified the relationship between the expression level of FFAR2 gene and AMI by expanding the sample size based on the previous gene chip results. Methods: Peripheral venous leukocytes were collected from 113 patients with AMI and 94 patients with noncoronary artery disease as the experimental group and the control group, respectively. Real-time fluorescence quantitative polymerase chain reaction was used to detect the expression of the FFAR2 gene. Western blot analysis was applied to detect the relative expression of the FFAR2 gene at the level of protein. Furthermore, the relationship between gene expression and clinical data was also analyzed and compared. Results: The level of expression of FFAR2 gene in peripheral blood of patients with AMI was significantly lower than that of the control group (0.33 [0.04-1.08], 0.62 [0.07-1.86], respectively; p < 0.05), which was 0.53 times that of the control group. Western blot results presented that the FFAR2 protein level in the peripheral blood of the AMI group was lower than that of the control group (0.114; p=0.004). Analyzing clinical data of the subjects indicated that the average age of the AMI group was significantly higher than the age of control group (p < 0.01). Also, the fasting blood glucose level was higher (p < 0.01), and the high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) level was lower (p=0.03). The FFAR2 mRNA level correlated positively with the HDL-C level (p < 0.01). Logistic regression analysis suggested that the low expression of the FFAR2 gene in peripheral blood may be a risk factor for AMI independent of age, family history of diabetes, fasting blood glucose level, and HDL-C level (p=0.025). Compared with the high FFAR2 expression group, the risk of AMI in the low FFAR2 expression group was 6.308 times higher. Conclusion: The expression level of the FFAR2 gene in peripheral blood of patients with AMI was significantly lower than that in the control group. Low expression of the FFAR2 gene in peripheral blood is an independent risk factor for AMI. Hence, it may also be a potential biomarker to predict AMI.
Short-chain fatty acid receptor, GPR43, is expressed by enteroendocrine cells and mucosal mast cells in rat intestine. Shin-ichiro Karaki;Retsu Mitsui;Hisayoshi Hayashi;Ikuo Kato;Hiroshi Sugiya;Toshihiko Iwanaga;John B Furness;Atsukazu Kuwahara. 2006. Cell Tissue Res. 324. PMID: 16453106

Short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), such as acetate, propionate, and butyrate, are the major anions in the large intestinal lumen. They are produced from dietary fiber by bacterial fermentation and are known to have a variety of physiological and pathophysiological effects on the intestine. In the present study, we investigated the expression of the SCFA receptor, GPR43, in the rat distal ileum and colon. Expression of GPR43 was detected by reverse transcriptase/polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), Western blotting, and immunohistochemistry. mRNA for GPR43 was detected, by RT-PCR, in extracts of the whole wall and separated mucosa from the ileum and colon and from muscle plus submucosa from the ileum, but not from muscle plus submucosa preparations from the colon. We raised a rabbit antiserum against a synthesized fragment of rat GPR43; this was specific for rat GPR43. GPR43 protein was detected by Western blot analysis in extracts of whole wall and separated mucosa, but not in muscle plus submucosa extracts. By immunohistochemistry, GPR43 immunoreactivity was localized to enteroendocrine cells expressing peptide YY (PYY), whereas 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT)-immunoreactive (IR) enteroendocrine cells were not immunoreactive for GPR43. Mast cells of the lamina propria expressing 5-HT were also GPR43-IR. The results of the present study suggest that the PYY-containing enteroendocrine cells and 5-HT-containing mucosal mast cells sense SCFAs via the GPR43 receptor. This is consistent with physiological data showing that SCFAs stimulate the release of PYY and 5-HT from the ileum and colon.
[Transcriptional expression of GPR43 gene in adipose tissue and primary cultured adipocytes of pig]. Zengmiao Hou;Chao Sun. 2008. Sheng Wu Gong Cheng Xue Bao. 24. PMID: 18998536

GPR43 (G protein-coupled receptor 43) is a recently discovered short-chain free fatty acid receptor which plays important role in adipogenesis. Here we explored the transcriptional expression rule of GPR43 in porcine adipose tissue and primary cultured adipocytes. Partial cDNA of GPR43 was successfully cloned from swine by RT-PCR and the expression profile of GPR43 mRNA was studied from different types, different growing stages, and different sites of porcine adipose tissue as well as porcine primary cultured adipocytes. The results showed that porcine GPR43 shared high homology with human (89%), mouse (84%) and rat (83%). The expression level of GPR43 mRNA was significantly higher in adipose tissue of obese pigs than that of lean pigs, and also the expression level gradually increased with age. Further, the abundance of GPR43 mRNA level was higher in subcutaneous fat than in visceral fat. In addition, during the adipocytes differentiation, the expression of GPR43 mRNA increased in a time-dependent manner. These data indicated that GPR43 gene expression was relate to the site of adipose tissue, economic type, and age of pig as well as differentiating state of adipocytes, implying that GPR43 can be a potential factor to regulate adipogenesis.
Evaluation of the relationship between GPR43 and adiposity in human. Evelyne M Dewulf;Qian Ge;Laure B Bindels;Florence M Sohet;Patrice D Cani;Sonia M Brichard;Nathalie M Delzenne. 2013. Nutr Metab (Lond). 10. PMID: 23327542

UNLABELLED: BACKGROUND: GPR43 is a G-protein-coupled receptor that participates in adipocyte differentiation in mice and is over-expressed in adipose tissue of obese mice. The aim of this study was to investigate the implication of GPR43 in adipogenesis in humans and to determine the influence of obesity on its expression in human adipose tissue. FINDINGS: Preadipocytes were isolated from human omental adipose tissue and cultured during 13 days. One PPARγ agonist (troglitazone) and three GPR43 agonists (two physiological and one synthetic) were tested for their ability to induce differentiation. After 13 days, the three GPR43 agonists had no impact on aP2 expression, a marker of adipocyte differentiation, whereas troglitazone led to a huge over-expression of aP2 in these cells but tended to decrease GPR43 expression (p=0.06).GPR43 and inflammatory markers expression was also quantified in omental adipose tissue from lean and obese individuals. GPR43 expression in total adipose tissue was similar between obese patients and lean subjects and did not correlate with aP2 expression. In contrast, GPR43 expression positively correlated with TNFα mRNA. CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest the absence of relationship between GPR43 and adipocyte differentiation in humans, unlike what was observed in mice. Furthermore, GPR43 expression is not increased in adipose tissue from obese subjects but could be related to TNFα-related inflammatory processes.
The short chain fatty acid receptor GPR43 regulates inflammatory signals in adipose tissue M2-type macrophages. Akira Nakajima;Akiho Nakatani;Sae Hasegawa;Junichiro Irie;Kentaro Ozawa;Gozoh Tsujimoto;Takayoshi Suganami;Hiroshi Itoh;Ikuo Kimura. 2017. PLoS One. 12. PMID: 28692672

The regulation of inflammatory responses within adipose tissue by various types of immune cells is closely related to tissue homeostasis and progression of metabolic disorders such as obesity and type 2 diabetes. G-protein-coupled receptor 43 (GPR43), which is activated by short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), is known to be most abundantly expressed in white adipose tissue and to modulate metabolic processes. Although GPR43 is also expressed in a wide variety of immune cells, whether and how GPR43 in adipose tissue immune cells regulates the inflammatory responses and metabolic homeostasis remains unknown. In this study, we investigated the role of GPR43 in adipose tissue macrophages by using Gpr43-deficient mice and transgenic mice with adipose-tissue-specific overexpression of GPR43. We found that GPR43 activation by SCFA resulted in induction of the pro-inflammatory cytokine tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) in anti-inflammatory M2-type macrophages within adipose tissue. By contrast, this effect was not noted in inflammatory M1-type macrophages, suggesting that GPR43 plays distinct functions depending on macrophage types. Local TNF-α signaling derived from steady-state adipose tissue is associated with proper tissue remodeling as well as suppression of fat accumulation. Thus, GPR43-involving mechanism that we have identified supports maintenance of adipose tissue homeostasis and increase in metabolic activity. This newly identified facet of GPR43 in macrophages may have clinical implications for immune-metabolism related episodes.
The Short-Chain Fatty Acid Propionate Inhibits Adipogenic Differentiation of Human Chorion-Derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells Through the Free Fatty Acid Receptor 2. Judit Iván;Evelin Major;Adrienn Sipos;Katalin Kovács;Dániel Horváth;István Tamás;Péter Bay;Viktor Dombrádi;Beáta Lontay. 2017. Stem Cells Dev. 26. PMID: 28992793

Free fatty acid receptor 2 (FFAR2, also known as GPR43) is a G-protein-coupled receptor activated by short-chain fatty acids that are produced by gut microbiota through fermentation of nondigestible carbohydrates. FFAR2 functions as a metabolic sensor and is expressed in metabolically active tissues, such as adipose tissue. Earlier studies proved the connection between FFAR2 and adipocyte differentiation in mice. The aim of this study was to investigate the implication of FFAR2 receptor in adipogenesis in human chorion-derived mesenchymal stem cells (cMSCs). The short-chain fatty acid, propionate, and phenylacetamide a selective FFAR2 agonist resulted in a marked suppression of lipid droplet accumulation during the adipogenic differentiation of cMSCs. Western blot studies revealed that FFAR2 was detectable at any time point of the differentiation period. The direct involvement of FFAR2 in the differentiation into adipocytes was proven by the downregulation of its gene expression in cMSCs by lentiviral messenger RNA (mRNA) silencing transduction particles. Our results showed that a significant suppression in lipid accumulation upon FFAR2 agonist treatments was elicited by FFAR2-silencing. Based on these results we suggest that propionate inhibits the formation of adipocytes from MSCs and acts on adipogenesis predominantly via FFAR2.
Expression of Free Fatty Acid Receptor 2 by Dendritic Cells Prevents Their Expression of Interleukin 27 and Is Required for Maintenance of Mucosal Barrier and Immune Response Against Colorectal Tumors in Mice. Sydney Lavoie;Eunyoung Chun;Sena Bae;Caitlin A Brennan;Carey Ann Gallini Comeau;Jessica K Lang;Monia Michaud;Hamid R Hoveyda;Graeme L Fraser;Miles H Fuller;Brian T Layden;Jonathan N Glickman;Wendy S Garrett. 2020. Gastroenterology. 158. PMID: 31917258

BACKGROUND & AIMS: Intestinal microbes and their metabolites affect the development of colorectal cancer (CRC). Short-chain fatty acids are metabolites generated by intestinal microbes from dietary fiber. We investigated the mechanisms by which free fatty acid receptor 2 (FFAR2), a receptor for short-chain fatty acids that can affect the composition of the intestinal microbiome, contributes to the pathogenesis of CRC. METHODS: We performed studies with ApcMin/+ mice, ApcMin/+Ffar2-/- mice, mice with conditional disruption of Ffar2 in dendritic cells (DCs) (Ffar2fl/flCD11c-Cre mice), ApcMin/+Ffar2fl/flCD11c-Cre mice, and Ffar2fl/fl mice (controls); some mice were given dextran sodium sulfate to induce colitis, with or without a FFAR2 agonist or an antibody against interleukin 27 (IL27). Colon and tumor tissues were analyzed by histology, quantitative polymerase chain reaction, and 16S ribosomal RNA gene sequencing; lamina propria and mesenteric lymph node tissues were analyzed by RNA sequencing and flow cytometry. Intestinal permeability was measured after gavage with fluorescently labeled dextran. We collected data on colorectal tumors from The Cancer Genome Atlas. RESULTS: ApcMin/+Ffar2-/- mice developed significantly more spontaneous colon tumors than ApcMin/+ mice and had increased gut permeability before tumor development, associated with reduced expression of E-cadherin. Colon tumors from ApcMin/+Ffar2-/- mice had a higher number of bacteria than tumors from ApcMin/+ mice, as well as higher frequencies of CD39+CD8+ T cells and exhausted or dying T cells. DCs from ApcMin/+Ffar2-/- mice had an altered state of activation, increased death, and higher production of IL27. Administration of an antibody against IL27 reduced the numbers of colon tumors in ApcMin/+ mice with colitis. Frequencies of CD39+CD8+ T cells and IL27+ DCs were increased in colon lamina propria from Ffar2fl/flCD11c-Cre mice with colitis compared with control mice or mice without colitis. ApcMin/+Ffar2fl/flCD11c-Cre mice developed even more tumors than ApcMin/+Ffar2fl/fl mice, and their tumors had even higher numbers of IL27+ DCs. ApcMin/+ mice with colitis given the FFAR2 agonist developed fewer colon tumors, with fewer IL27+ DCs, than mice not given the agonist. DCs incubated with the FFAR2 agonist no longer had gene expression patterns associated with activation or IL27 production. CONCLUSIONS: Loss of FFAR2 promotes colon tumorigenesis in mice by reducing gut barrier integrity, increasing tumor bacterial load, promoting exhaustion of CD8+ T cells, and overactivating DCs, leading to their death. Antibodies against IL27 and an FFAR2 agonist reduce tumorigenesis in mice and might be developed for the treatment of CRC.
Activation of G protein-coupled receptor 43 in adipocytes leads to inhibition of lipolysis and suppression of plasma free fatty acids. Hongfei Ge;Xiaofan Li;Jennifer Weiszmann;Ping Wang;Helene Baribault;Jin-Long Chen;Hui Tian;Yang Li. 2008. Endocrinology. 149. PMID: 18499755

G protein-coupled receptor 43 (GPR43) has been identified as a receptor for short-chain fatty acids that include acetate and propionate. A potential involvement of GPR43 in immune and inflammatory response has been previously suggested because its expression is highly enriched in immune cells. GPR43 is also expressed in a number of other tissues including adipocytes; however, the functional consequences of GPR43 activation in these other tissues are not clear. In this report, we focus on the potential functions of GPR43 in adipocytes. We show that adipocytes treated with GPR43 natural ligands, acetate and propionate, exhibit a reduction in lipolytic activity. This inhibition of lipolysis is the result of GPR43 activation, because this effect is abolished in adipocytes isolated from GPR43 knockout animals. In a mouse in vivo model, we show that the activation of GPR43 by acetate results in the reduction in plasma free fatty acid levels without inducing the flushing side effect that has been observed by the activation of nicotinic acid receptor, GPR109A. These results suggest a potential role for GPR43 in regulating plasma lipid profiles and perhaps aspects of metabolic syndrome.
An essential role of Ffar2 (Gpr43) in dietary fibre-mediated promotion of healthy composition of gut microbiota and suppression of intestinal carcinogenesis. S Sivaprakasam;A Gurav;A V Paschall;G L Coe;K Chaudhary;Y Cai;R Kolhe;P Martin;D Browning;L Huang;H Shi;H Sifuentes;M Vijay-Kumar;S A Thompson;D H Munn;A Mellor;T L McGaha;P Shiao;C W Cutler;K Liu;V Ganapathy;H Li;N Singh. 2016. Oncogenesis. 5. PMID: 27348268

Composition of the gut microbiota has profound effects on intestinal carcinogenesis. Diet and host genetics play critical roles in shaping the composition of gut microbiota. Whether diet and host genes interact with each other to bring specific changes in gut microbiota that affect intestinal carcinogenesis is unknown. Ability of dietary fibre to specifically increase beneficial gut microbiota at the expense of pathogenic bacteria in vivo via unknown mechanism is an important process that suppresses intestinal inflammation and carcinogenesis. Free fatty acid receptor 2 (FFAR2 or GPR43) is a receptor for short-chain fatty acids (acetate, propionate and butyrate), metabolites of dietary fibre fermentation by gut microbiota. Here, we show FFAR2 is down modulated in human colon cancers than matched adjacent healthy tissue. Consistent with this, Ffar2(-/-) mice are hypersusceptible to development of intestinal carcinogenesis. Dietary fibre suppressed colon carcinogenesis in an Ffar2-dependent manner. Ffar2 played an essential role in dietary fibre-mediated promotion of beneficial gut microbiota, Bifidobacterium species (spp) and suppression of Helicobacter hepaticus and Prevotellaceae. Moreover, numbers of Bifidobacterium is reduced, whereas those of Prevotellaceae are increased in human colon cancers than matched adjacent normal tissue. Administration of Bifidobacterium mitigated intestinal inflammation and carcinogenesis in Ffar2(-/-) mice. Taken together, these findings suggest that interplay between dietary fibre and Ffar2 play a key role in promoting healthy composition of gut microbiota that stimulates intestinal health.
Free fatty acids receptors 2 and 3 control cell proliferation by regulating cellular glucose uptake. Saeed Al Mahri;Amal Al Ghamdi;Maaged Akiel;Monira Al Aujan;Sameer Mohammad;Mohammad Azhar Aziz. 2020. World J Gastrointest Oncol. 12. PMID: 32461783

BACKGROUND: Colorectal cancer (CRC) is a worldwide problem, which has been associated with changes in diet and lifestyle pattern. As a result of colonic fermentation of dietary fibres, short chain free fatty acids are generated which activate free fatty acid receptors (FFAR) 2 and 3. FFAR2 and FFAR3 genes are abundantly expressed in colonic epithelium and play an important role in the metabolic homeostasis of colonic epithelial cells. Earlier studies point to the involvement of FFAR2 in colorectal carcinogenesis. AIM: To understand the role of short chain FFARs in CRC. METHODS: Transcriptome analysis console software was used to analyse microarray data from CRC patients and cell lines. We employed short-hairpin RNA mediated down regulation of FFAR2 and FFAR3 genes, which was validated using quantitative real time polymerase chain reaction. Assays for glucose uptake and cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) generation was done along with immunofluorescence studies to study the effects of FFAR2/FFAR3 knockdown. For measuring cell proliferation, we employed real time electrical impedance-based assay available from xCELLigence. RESULTS: Microarray data analysis of CRC patient samples showed a significant down regulation of FFAR2 gene expression. This prompted us to study the FFAR2 in CRC. Since, FFAR3 shares significant structural and functional homology with FFAR2, we knocked down both these receptors in CRC cell line HCT 116. These modified cell lines exhibited higher proliferation rate and were found to have increased glucose uptake as well as increased level of glucose transporter 1. Since, FFAR2 and FFAR3 signal through G protein subunit (Gαi), knockdown of these receptors was associated with increased cAMP. Inhibition of protein kinase A (PKA) did not alter the growth and proliferation of these cells indicating a mechanism independent of cAMP/PKA pathway. CONCLUSION: Our results suggest role of FFAR2/FFAR3 genes in increased proliferation of colon cancer cells via enhanced glucose uptake and exclude the role of PKA mediated cAMP signalling. Alternate pathways could be involved that would ultimately result in increased cell proliferation as a result of down regulated FFAR2/FFAR3 genes. This study paves the way to understand the mechanism of action of short chain FFARs in CRC.
Expression of the short-chain fatty acid receptor, GPR43, in the human colon. Shin-Ichiro Karaki;Hideaki Tazoe;Hisayoshi Hayashi;Hidefumi Kashiwabara;Kazunari Tooyama;Yuichi Suzuki;Atsukazu Kuwahara. 2007. J Mol Histol. 39. PMID: 17899402

Short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), 2-4 carbon monocarboxylates including acetate, propionate and butyrate, are known to have a variety of physiological and pathophysiological effects on the intestine. Previously, we reported that the SCFA receptor, G-protein coupled receptor 43 (GPR43), is expressed by enteroendocrine and mucosal mast cells in the rat intestine. In the present study, expression and localization of GPR43 were investigated in the human large intestine. Gene and protein expression of GPR43 in the human ascending colon was analyzed by reverse transcriptase/polymerase chain reaction and Western blotting, respectively. In addition, localization of GPR43 was investigated by immunohistochemistry. In RT-PCR analysis, GPR43 mRNA was detected in whole wall mRNA samples. Western blotting analysis revealed the expression of GPR43 protein in whole wall and scraped mucosa protein samples, but not in muscle or submucosa. GPR43 immunoreactivity was observed in the intracellularly in enterocytes and in the peptide YY-immunoreactive enteroendocrine cells. These results indicate that the short chain fatty acid receptor, GPR43 is expressed by enteroendocrine L cells containing peptide YY in the human large intestine.
G-protein-coupled receptor for short-chain fatty acids suppresses colon cancer. Yong Tang;Yakun Chen;Hongmei Jiang;Gregory T Robbins;Daotai Nie. 2010. Int J Cancer. 128. PMID: 20979106

GPR43 is a G-protein-coupled receptor for short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs). Expression of GPR43 is detected in hematopoietic tissues and the large intestine. SCFAs are derived from bacterial fermentation and metabolism of undigested dietary fibers and have been recognized for their cancer prevention activities in the colon. The role of SCFAs, particularly butyrate, in colon cancer therapy has been extensively studied, and its tumor suppressive functions are believed to be due to their intracellular actions, notably inhibition of histone deacetylase. In our study, we show that SCFAs also exert their antitumor effects via receptor GPR43 and that GPR43 is frequently lost in colon cancer cells. Immunohistostaining revealed that GPR43 immunoreactivity was high in normal colon tissues (N = 31) but was markedly reduced or completely lost in most colorectal adenocarcinoma tissues (N = 70) and their corresponding lymph node metastatic adenocarcinomas (N = 38). RT-PCR analysis detected the presence of full length GPR43 mRNA in only one (HT-29) of nine established human colon cancer cell lines. Restoration of GPR43 expression in HCT8 human colonic adenocarcinoma cells induced G0/G1 cell cycle arrest and activated caspases, leading to increased apoptotic cell death after propionate/butyrate treatment. Restored GPR43 expression, coupled with propionate treatment, induced an upregulation of p21 and a decrease in the levels of cyclin D3 and cyclin-dependent kinases (CDKs) 1 and 2, while the CDK4 and CDK6 levels remained unchanged. Our results suggest that GPR43 functions as a tumor suppressor by mediating SCFA-induced cell proliferation inhibition and apoptotic cell death in colon cancer.
Free fatty acid receptor 2, a candidate target for type 1 diabetes, induces cell apoptosis through ERK signaling. Guojun Shi;Chen Sun;Weiqiong Gu;Minglan Yang;Xiaofang Zhang;Nan Zhai;Yan Lu;Zhijian Zhang;Peishun Shou;Zhiguo Zhang;Guang Ning. 2014. J Mol Endocrinol. 53. PMID: 25298143

Recent reports have highlighted the roles of free fatty acid receptor 2 (FFAR2) in the regulation of metabolic and inflammatory processes. However, the potential function of FFAR2 in type 1 diabetes (T1D) remains unexplored. Our results indicated that the mRNA level of FFAR2 was upregulated in peripheral blood mononuclear cells of T1D patients. The human FFAR2 promoter regions were cloned, and luciferase reporter assays revealed that NFκB activation induced FFAR2 expression. Furthermore, we showed that FFAR2 activation by overexpression induced cell apoptosis through ERK signaling. Finally, treatment with the FFAR2 agonists acetate or phenylacetamide 1 attenuated the inflammatory response in multiple-low-dose streptozocin-induced diabetic mice, and improved the impaired glucose tolerance. These results indicate that FFAR2 may play a protective role by inducing apoptosis of infiltrated macrophage in the pancreas through its feedback upregulation and activation, thus, in turn, improving glucose homeostasis in diabetic mice. These findings highlight FFAR2 as a potential therapeutic target of T1D, representing a link between immune response and glucose homeostasis.
GPR43 activation enhances psoriasis-like inflammation through epidermal upregulation of IL-6 and dual oxidase 2 signaling in a murine model. Ahmed Nadeem;Sheikh F Ahmad;Naif O Al-Harbi;Ahmed M El-Sherbeeny;Mohammed M Al-Harbi;Talal S Almukhlafi. 2017. Cell Signal. 33. PMID: 28212864

The gut is densely inhabited by commensal bacteria, which metabolize dietary fibers/undigested carbohydrates and produce short-chain fatty acids such as acetate. GPR43 is one of the receptors to sense short-chain fatty acids, and expressed in various immune and non-immune cells. Acetate/GPR43 signaling has been shown to affect various inflammatory diseases through Th17 responses and NADPH oxidase (NOX)-derived reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation. However, no study has previously explored the effects of GPR43 activation during psoriasis-like inflammation. Therefore, this study investigated the effect of acetate/phenylacetamide (GPR43 agonists) on imiquimod induced skin inflammation in mice. Mice were administered phenylacetamide/acetate followed by assessment of skin inflammation, NOXs (NOX-2, NOX-4, dual oxidases), and Th17 related signaling. Our study showed induction of epidermal GPR43 after imiquimod treatment, i.e. psoriasis-like inflammation. Acetate administration in psoriatic mice led to further increase in skin inflammation (ear thickness/myeloperoxidase activity) with concurrent increase in Th17 immune responses and epidermal dual oxidase-2 signaling. Further, topical application of GPR43 agonist, phenylacetamide led to enhanced ear thickness with concomitant epidermal IL-6 signaling as well as dual oxidase-2 upregulation which may be responsible for increased psoriasis-like inflammation. Taken together, dual oxidase-2 and IL-6 play important roles in GPR43-mediated skin inflammation. The current study suggests that GPR43 activation in psoriatic patients may lead to aggravation of psoriatic inflammation.
Neutrophil priming that turns natural FFA2R agonists into potent activators of the superoxide generating NADPH-oxidase. Jonas Mårtensson;André Holdfeldt;Martina Sundqvist;Michael Gabl;Terry P Kenakin;Lena Björkman;Huamei Forsman;Claes Dahlgren. 2018. J Leukoc Biol. 104. PMID: 30134499

Acetate, an agonist for the free fatty acid receptor 2 (FFA2R/GPR43), triggers an increase in the cytosolic concentration of free Ca2+ in neutrophils without any assembly of the superoxide generating NADPH-oxidase. We show that the phenylacetamide compound 58 (Cmp 58; (S)-2-(4-chlorophenyl)-3,3-dimethyl-N-(5-phenylthiazol-2-yl)butanamide), lacking a direct activating effect on neutrophils, acts as a positive FFA2R modulator that turns acetate into a potent activating agonist that triggers an assembly of the NADPH-oxidase. The NADPH-oxidase activity could be further increased in neutrophils treated with the pro-inflammatory cytokine TNF-α. Many neutrophil chemoattractant receptors are stored in secretory organelles but no FFA2R mobilization was induced in neutrophils treated with TNF-α. The receptor selectivity was demonstrated through the inhibition of the neutrophil response induced by the combined action of acetate and Cmp 58 by the FFA2R antagonist CATPB. Receptor modulators that positively co-operate with natural FFA2R agonists and prime neutrophils in their response to such agonists, may serve as good tools for further unraveling the physiological functions of FFA2R and its involvement in various diseases. In this study, we show that neutrophils primed with a presumed allosteric FFA2R modulator produce increased amounts of reactive oxygen species when activated by receptor specific agonists.
Short-chain fatty acids activate GPR41 and GPR43 on intestinal epithelial cells to promote inflammatory responses in mice. Myung H Kim;Seung G Kang;Jeong H Park;Masashi Yanagisawa;Chang H Kim. 2013. Gastroenterology. 145. PMID: 23665276

BACKGROUND & AIMS: Short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), the most abundant microbial metabolites in the intestine, activate cells via G-protein-coupled receptors (GPRs), such as GPR41 and GPR43. We studied regulation of the immune response by SCFAs and their receptors in the intestines of mice. METHODS: Inflammatory responses were induced in GPR41(-/-), GPR43(-/-), and C57BL6 (control) mice by administration of ethanol; 2, 4, 6-trinitrobenzene sulfonic-acid (TNBS); or infection with Citrobacter rodentium. We examined the effects of C rodentium infection on control mice fed SCFAs and/or given injections of antibodies that delay the immune response. We also studied the kinetics of cytokine and chemokine production, leukocyte recruitment, intestinal permeability, and T-cell responses. Primary colon epithelial cells were isolated from GPR41(-/-), GPR43(-/-), and control mice; signaling pathways regulated by SCFAs were identified using immunohistochemical, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, and flow cytometry analyses. RESULTS: GPR41(-/-) and GPR43(-/-) mice had reduced inflammatory responses after administration of ethanol or TNBS compared with control mice, and had a slower immune response against C rodentium infection, clearing the bacteria more slowly. SCFAs activated intestinal epithelial cells to produce chemokines and cytokines in culture and mice after administration of ethanol, TNBS, or C rodentium. These processes required GPR41 and GPR43 and were required to recruit leukocytes and activate effector T cells in the intestine. GPR41 and GPR43 activated extracellular signal-regulated kinase 1/2 and p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase signaling pathways in epithelial cells to induce production of chemokines and cytokines during immune responses. CONCLUSIONS: SCFAs activate GPR41 and GPR43 on intestinal epithelial cells, leading to mitogen-activated protein kinase signaling and rapid production of chemokines and cytokines. These pathways mediate protective immunity and tissue inflammation in mice.
G protein-coupled receptor 43 moderates gut inflammation through cytokine regulation from mononuclear cells. Ryuta Masui;Makoto Sasaki;Yasushi Funaki;Naotaka Ogasawara;Mari Mizuno;Akihito Iida;Shinya Izawa;Yoshihiro Kondo;Yoshitsugi Ito;Yasuhiro Tamura;Kenichiro Yanamoto;Hisatsugu Noda;Atsushi Tanabe;Noriko Okaniwa;Yoshiharu Yamaguchi;Takashi Iwamoto;Kunio Kasugai. 2013. Inflamm Bowel Dis. 19. PMID: 24141712

BACKGROUND: Short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), which are produced by the fermentation of dietary fiber by intestinal microbiota, may positively influence immune responses and protect against gut inflammation. SCFAs bind to G protein-coupled receptor 43 (GPR43). Here, we show that SCFA-GPR43 interactions profoundly affect the gut inflammatory response. METHODS: Colitis was induced by adding dextran sulfate sodium to the drinking water of GPR43 knockout (-/-) and wild-type mice. RESULTS: Dextran sulfate sodium-treated GPR43 mice exhibited weight loss, increased disease activity index (a combined measure of weight loss, rectal bleeding, and stool consistency), decreased hematocrit, and colon shortening, resulting in significantly worse colonic inflammation than in wild-type mice. Tumor necrosis factor alpha and interleukin 17 protein levels in the colonic mucosa of GPR43 mice were significantly higher than in wild-type mice. Treatment of wild-type mice with 150 mM acetate in their drinking water markedly improved these disease indices, with an increase in colon length and decrease in the disease activity index; however, it had no effect on GPR43 mice. Mononuclear cell production of tumor necrosis factor alpha after lipopolysaccharide stimulation was suppressed by acetate. This effect was inhibited by anti-GPR43 antibody. CONCLUSIONS: SCFA-GPR43 interactions modulate colitis by regulating inflammatory cytokine production in mononuclear cells.
The short-chain fatty acid receptor GPR43 is transcriptionally regulated by XBP1 in human monocytes. Zhiwei Ang;Jun Zhi Er;Jeak Ling Ding. 2015. Sci Rep. 5. PMID: 25633224

G-protein coupled receptor 43 (GPR43) recognizes short chain fatty acids and is implicated in obesity, colitis, asthma and arthritis. Here, we present the first full characterization of the GPR43 promoter and 5'-UTR. 5'-RACE of the GPR43 transcript identified the transcription start site (TSS) and a 124 bp 5'-UTR followed by a 1335 bp intron upstream of the ATG start codon. The sequence spanning -4560 to +68 bp relative to the GPR43 TSS was found to contain strong promoter activity, increasing luciferase reporter expression by >100-fold in U937 monocytes. Stepwise deletions further narrowed the putative GPR43 promoter (-451 to +68). Site-directed mutagenesis identified XBP1 as a core cis element, the mutation of which abrogated transcriptional activity. Mutations of predicted CREB, CHOP, NFAT and STAT5 binding sites, partially reduced promoter activity. ChIP assays confirmed the binding of XBP1 to the endogenous GPR43 promoter. Consistently, GPR43 expression is reduced in monocytes upon siRNA-knockdown of XBP1, while A549 cells overexpressing XBP1 displayed elevated GPR43 levels. Based on its ability to activate XBP1, we predicted and confirmed that TNFα induces GPR43 expression in human monocytes. Altogether, our findings form the basis for strategic modulation of GPR43 expression, with a view to regulate GPR43-associated diseases.
Selective novel inverse agonists for human GPR43 augment GLP-1 secretion. Bi-Oh Park;Seong Heon Kim;Gye Yeong Kong;Da Hui Kim;Mi So Kwon;Su Ui Lee;Mun-Ock Kim;Sungchan Cho;Sangku Lee;Hyun-Jun Lee;Sang-Bae Han;Young Shin Kwak;Sung Bae Lee;Sunhong Kim. 2015. Eur J Pharmacol. 771. PMID: 26683635

GPR43/Free Fatty Acid Receptor 2 (FFAR2) is known to be activated by short-chain fatty acids and be coupled to Gi and Gq family of heterotrimeric G proteins. GPR43 is mainly expressed in neutrophils, adipocytes and enteroendocrine cells, implicated to be involved in inflammation, obesity and type 2 diabetes. However, several groups have reported the contradictory data about the physiological functions of GPR43, so that its roles in vivo remain unclear. Here, we demonstrate that a novel compound of pyrimidinecarboxamide class named as BTI-A-404 is a selective and potent competitive inverse agonist of human GPR43, but not the murine ortholog. Through structure-activity relationship (SAR), we also found active compound named as BTI-A-292. These regulators increased the cyclic AMP level and reduced acetate-induced cytoplasmic Ca(2+) level. Furthermore, we show that they modulated the downstream signaling pathways of GPR43, such as ERK, p38 MAPK, and NF-κB. It was surprising that two compounds augmented the secretion of glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1) in NCI-H716 cell line. Collectively, these novel and specific competitive inhibitors regulate all aspects of GPR43 signaling and the results underscore the therapeutic potential of them.
Ffar2 expression regulates leukaemic cell growth in vivo. Laure B Bindels;Paolo E Porporato;Sarah Ducastel;Martina Sboarina;Audrey M Neyrinck;Evelyne M Dewulf;Olivier Feron;Sophie Lestavel;Patrice D Cani;Bart Staels;Pierre Sonveaux;Nathalie M Delzenne. 2017. Br J Cancer. 117. PMID: 28873082

BACKGROUND: Activation of free fatty acid receptor 2 (FFAR2) by microbiota-derived metabolites (e.g., propionate) reduces leukaemic cell proliferation in vitro. This study aims to test whether Ffar2 expression per se also influences leukaemia cell growth in vivo. METHODS: Bcr-Abl-expressing BaF cells were used as a leukaemia model and the role of Ffar2 was evaluated in Balb/c mice after lentiviral shRNA transduction. RESULTS: Our data formally establish that reduced leukaemic cell proliferation is associated with increased Ffar2 expression in vivo and in vitro. Going beyond association, we point out that decreasing Ffar2 expression fosters cancer cell growth in vitro and in vivo. CONCLUSIONS: Our data demonstrate the role of Ffar2 in the control of leukaemic cell proliferation in vivo and indicate that a modulation of Ffar2 expression through nutritional tools or pharmacological agents may constitute an attractive therapeutic approach to tackle leukaemia progression in humans.
GPR43 regulates HBV X protein (HBx)-induced inflammatory response in human LO2 hepatocytes. Tao He;Ning Zhang;Li Wang;Baishun Wan;Xiaoqian Wang;Ling Zhang. 2019. Biomed Pharmacother. 123. PMID: 31884344

The present study investigated the role of G coupled-protein receptor 43 (GPR43), also known as free fatty acid receptor 2 (FFAR2), in regulating the cytotoxic effects of hepatitis B virus (HBV) by transfecting hepatitis B protein X (HBx) into human LO2 hepatocytes. To our knowledge, this study is the first to demonstrate the role of GPR43 in LO2 hepatocytes and to show that transfection with HBx suppresses GPR43 expression. HBx contributes to inflammation by triggering the release of proinflammatory cytokines including interleukin-6 (IL-6), monocyte chemoattractant protein (MCP-1), (C-X-C motif) ligand 2 (CXCL2), and high mobility group box 1 protein (HMGB1). Additionally, HBx induces oxidative stress by upregulating the production of ROS. We performed a series of experiments using the human LO2 cell line and the specific GPR43 agonist (S)-2-(4-chlorophenyl)-3,3-dimethyl-N-(5-phenyl thiazole-2-yl) butanamide (PA). We found that agonism of GPR43 significantly ameliorated HBx-induced expression of proinflammatory cytokines and chemokines, and lowered the level of oxidative stress. Notably, we demonstrate that these effects of PA are mediated through inhitibing the phosphorylation of p38 and activation of the IκBα/nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) pathway. Together, our findings provide compelling evidence of the potential for GPR43 as a treatment target against HBx-induced inflammatory response.
Functional characterization of human receptors for short chain fatty acids and their role in polymorphonuclear cell activation. Emmanuel Le Poul;Cecile Loison;Sofie Struyf;Jean-Yves Springael;Vincent Lannoy;Marie-Eve Decobecq;Stephane Brezillon;Vincent Dupriez;Gilbert Vassart;Jo Van Damme;Marc Parmentier;Michel Detheux. 2003. J Biol Chem. 278. PMID: 12711604

Short chain fatty acids (SCFAs), including acetate, propionate, and butyrate, are produced at high concentration by bacteria in the gut and subsequently released in the bloodstream. Basal acetate concentrations in the blood (about 100 microm) can further increase to millimolar concentrations following alcohol intake. It was known previously that SCFAs can activate leukocytes, particularly neutrophils. In the present work, we have identified two previously orphan G protein-coupled receptors, GPR41 and GPR43, as receptors for SCFAs. Propionate was the most potent agonist for both GPR41 and GPR43. Acetate was more selective for GPR43, whereas butyrate and isobutyrate were more active on GPR41. The two receptors were coupled to inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate formation, intracellular Ca2+ release, ERK1/2 activation, and inhibition of cAMP accumulation. They exhibited, however, a differential coupling to G proteins; GPR41 coupled exclusively though the Pertussis toxin-sensitive Gi/o family, whereas GPR43 displayed a dual coupling through Gi/o and Pertussis toxin-insensitive Gq protein families. The broad expression profile of GPR41 in a number of tissues does not allow us to infer clear hypotheses regarding its biological functions. In contrast, the highly selective expression of GPR43 in leukocytes, particularly polymorphonuclear cells, suggests a role in the recruitment of these cell populations toward sites of bacterial infection. The pharmacology of GPR43 matches indeed the effects of SCFAs on neutrophils, in terms of intracellular Ca2+ release and chemotaxis. Such a neutrophil-specific SCFA receptor is potentially involved in the development of a variety of diseases characterized by either excessive or inefficient neutrophil recruitment and activation, such as inflammatory bowel diseases or alcoholism-associated immune depression. GPR43 might therefore constitute a target allowing us to modulate immune responses in these pathological situations.
Identification of transforming activity of free fatty acid receptor 2 by retroviral expression screening. Hisashi Hatanaka;Mamiko Tsukui;Shuji Takada;Kentaro Kurashina;Young Lim Choi;Manabu Soda;Yoshihiro Yamashita;Hidenori Haruta;Toru Hamada;Toshihide Ueno;Kiichi Tamada;Yoshinori Hosoya;Naohiro Sata;Yoshikazu Yasuda;Hideo Nagai;Kentaro Sugano;Hiroyuki Mano. 2009. Cancer Sci. 101. PMID: 19780758

Gallbladder cancer (GBC) is a highly fatal malignancy in humans. Genetic alterations in KRAS or TP53 as well as overexpression of ERBB2 have been shown to contribute to the development of certain types of GBC. However, many cases of GBC do not harbor such genetic changes, with other transforming events awaiting discovery. We here tried to identify novel cancer-promoting genes in GBC, with the use of a retroviral cDNA expression library. A retroviral cDNA expression library was constructed from a surgically resected clinical specimen of GBC, and was used to infect 3T3 fibroblasts in a focus formation assay. cDNA incorporated into the transformed foci was rescued by PCR. One such cDNA was found to encode free fatty acid receptor 2 (FFAR2), a G protein-coupled receptor for short-chain fatty acids. The oncogenic potential of FFAR2 was confirmed both in vitro with the focus formation assay and by evaluation of cell growth in soft agar as well as in vivo with a tumorigenicity assay in nude mice. The isolated FFAR2 cDNA had no sequence alterations, suggesting that upregulation of FFAR2 expression may contribute to malignant transformation. Indeed, all of quantitative RT-PCR, in situ hybridization, and immunohistochemical analyses showed that the amount of FFAR2 mRNA and its protein product was increased in digestive tract cancer specimens. Furthermore, short-chain fatty acids potentiated the mitogenic action of FFAR2 in 3T3 cells. Our data thus, for the first time, implicate FFAR2 in carcinogenesis of the digestive tract.
A novel antiinflammatory role for the short-chain fatty acids in human labor. Chiara Voltolini;Sharon Battersby;Sophie L Etherington;Felice Petraglia;Jane E Norman;Henry N Jabbour. 2011. Endocrinology. 153. PMID: 22186417

Human parturition is an inflammatory process that can be activated prematurely by pathological stimuli. This study investigated the expression of G protein-coupled receptors GPR43 and GPR41 receptors in human uteroplacental tissues and the role of short-chain fatty acids (SCFA) in modulating inflammatory pathways in fetal membranes. Expression of GPR43 and GPR41 was investigated in uteroplacental tissues collected from women delivering at term or preterm after ethical approval and patient informed consent. The effect of SCFA on expression of inflammatory genes was assessed in amnion explants after culture with a mimetic of infection (lipopolysaccharide, LPS). Sodium propionate effect on LPS-induced neutrophil chemotaxis was evaluated by transwell assay. GPR43 and GPR41 mRNA expression was higher in myometrium and fetal membranes collected from women after the onset of labor. GPR43 protein expression localized to immune cells and vascular endothelium in the myometrium and epithelium of fetal membranes. Treatment with LPS significantly increased mRNA expression of GPR43 and inflammatory genes. Cotreatment with LPS and sodium propionate decreased LPS-induced expression of inflammatory genes including IL-6, IL-8, cyclooxygenase-2, IL-1α, intercellular adhesion molecule-1, and platelet endothelial cell adhesion molecule-1 but not IL-1β or lymphocyte function-associated antigen-1. Sodium propionate reduced LPS-induced neutrophil chemotaxis and protein secretion of the neutrophil chemoattractant IL-8. Finally, fetal membrane expression of GPR43 was significantly higher in women delivering preterm with evidence of infection. GPR43-SCFA interactions may represent novel pathways that regulate inflammatory processes involved in human labor. Suppression of inflammatory pathways by SCFA may be therapeutically beneficial for pregnant women at risk of pathogen-induced preterm delivery.
Expanding Duplication of Free Fatty Acid Receptor-2 (GPR43) Genes in the Chicken Genome. Camille Meslin;Colette Desert;Isabelle Callebaut;Anis Djari;Christophe Klopp;Frédérique Pitel;Sophie Leroux;Pascal Martin;Pascal Froment;Edith Guilbert;Florence Gondret;Sandrine Lagarrigue;Philippe Monget. 2015. Genome Biol Evol. 7. PMID: 25912043

Free fatty acid receptors (FFAR) belong to a family of five G-protein coupled receptors that are involved in the regulation of lipid metabolism, so that their loss of function increases the risk of obesity. The aim of this study was to determine the expansion of genes encoding paralogs of FFAR2 in the chicken, considered as a model organism for developmental biology and biomedical research. By estimating the gene copy number using quantitative polymerase chain reaction, genomic DNA resequencing, and RNA sequencing data, we showed the existence of 23 ± 1.5 genes encoding FFAR2 paralogs in the chicken genome. The FFAR2 paralogs shared an identity from 87.2% up to 99%. Extensive gene conversion was responsible for this high degree of sequence similarities between these genes, and this concerned especially the four amino acids known to be critical for ligand binding. Moreover, elevated nonsynonymous/synonymous substitution ratios on some amino acids within or in close-vicinity of the ligand-binding groove suggest that positive selection may have reduced the effective rate of gene conversion in this region, thus contributing to diversify the function of some FFAR2 paralogs. All the FFAR2 paralogs were located on a microchromosome in a same linkage group. FFAR2 genes were expressed in different tissues and cells such as spleen, peripheral blood mononuclear cells, abdominal adipose tissue, intestine, and lung, with the highest rate of expression in testis. Further investigations are needed to determine whether these chicken-specific events along evolution are the consequence of domestication and may play a role in regulating lipid metabolism in this species.
GPR43 Potentiates β-Cell Function in Obesity. Joanne C McNelis;Yun Sok Lee;Rafael Mayoral;Rik van der Kant;Andrew M F Johnson;Joshua Wollam;Jerrold M Olefsky. 2015. Diabetes. 64. PMID: 26023106

The intestinal microbiome can regulate host energy homeostasis and the development of metabolic disease. Here we identify GPR43, a receptor for bacterially produced short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), as a modulator of microbiota-host interaction. β-Cell expression of GPR43 and serum levels of acetate, an endogenous SCFA, are increased with a high-fat diet (HFD). HFD-fed GPR43 knockout (KO) mice develop glucose intolerance due to a defect in insulin secretion. In vitro treatment of isolated murine islets, human islets, and Min6 cells with (S)-2-(4-chlorophenyl)-3,3-dimethyl-N-(5-phenylthiazol-2-yl)butanamide (PA), a specific agonist of GPR43, increased intracellular inositol triphosphate and Ca(2+) levels, and potentiated insulin secretion in a GPR43-, Gαq-, and phospholipase C-dependent manner. In addition, KO mice fed an HFD displayed reduced β-cell mass and expression of differentiation genes, and the treatment of Min6 cells with PA increased β-cell proliferation and gene expression. Together these findings identify GPR43 as a potential target for therapeutic intervention.
The Neutrophil Response Induced by an Agonist for Free Fatty Acid Receptor 2 (GPR43) Is Primed by Tumor Necrosis Factor Alpha and by Receptor Uncoupling from the Cytoskeleton but Attenuated by Tissue Recruitment. Lena Björkman;Jonas Mårtensson;Malene Winther;Michael Gabl;André Holdfeldt;Martin Uhrbom;Johan Bylund;Anders Højgaard Hansen;Sunil K Pandey;Trond Ulven;Huamei Forsman;Claes Dahlgren. 2016. Mol Cell Biol. 36. PMID: 27503855

Ligands with improved potency and selectivity for free fatty acid receptor 2 (FFA2R) have become available, and we here characterize the neutrophil responses induced by one such agonist (Cmp1) and one antagonist (CATPB). Cmp1 triggered an increase in the cytosolic concentration of Ca(2+), and the neutrophils were then desensitized to Cmp1 and to acetate, a naturally occurring FFA2R agonist. The antagonist CATPB selectively inhibited responses induced by Cmp1 or acetate. The activated FFA2R induced superoxide anion secretion at a low level in naive blood neutrophils. This response was largely increased by tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) in a process associated with a recruitment of easily mobilizable granules, but neutrophils recruited to an aseptic inflammation in vivo were nonresponding. Superoxide production induced by Cmp1 was increased in latrunculin A-treated neutrophils, but no reactivation of desensitized FFA2R was induced by this drug, suggesting that the cytoskeleton is not directly involved in terminating the response. The functional and regulatory differences between the receptors that recognize short-chain fatty acids and formylated peptides, respectively, imply different roles of these receptors in the orchestration of inflammation and confirm the usefulness of a selective FFA2R agonist and antagonist as tools for the exploration of the precise role of the FFA2R.
The Metabolic Sensor GPR43 Receptor Plays a Role in the Control of Klebsiella pneumoniae Infection in the Lung. Izabela Galvão;Luciana P Tavares;Renan O Corrêa;José Luís Fachi;Vitor Melo Rocha;Marcela Rungue;Cristiana C Garcia;Geovanni Cassali;Caroline M Ferreira;Flaviano S Martins;Sergio C Oliveira;Charles R Mackay;Mauro M Teixeira;Marco Aurélio R Vinolo;Angélica T Vieira. 2018. Front Immunol. 9. PMID: 29515566

Pneumonia is one of the leading causes of death and mortality worldwide. The inflammatory responses that follow respiratory infections are protective leading to pathogen clearance but can also be deleterious if unregulated. The microbiota is known to be an important protective barrier against infections, mediating both direct inhibitory effects against the potential pathogen and also regulating the immune responses contributing to a proper clearance of the pathogen and return to homeostasis. GPR43 is one receptor for acetate, a microbiota metabolite shown to induce and to regulate important immune functions. Here, we addressed the role of GPR43 signaling during pulmonary bacterial infections. We have shown for the first time that the absence of GPR43 leads to increased susceptibility to Klebsiella pneumoniae infection, which was associated to both uncontrolled proliferation of bacteria and to increased inflammatory response. Mechanistically, we showed that GPR43 expression especially in neutrophils and alveolar macrophages is important for bacterial phagocytosis and killing. In addition, treatment with the GPR43 ligand, acetate, is protective during bacterial lung infection. This was associated to reduction in the number of bacteria in the airways and to the control of the inflammatory responses. Altogether, GPR43 plays an important role in the "gut-lung axis" as a sensor of the host gut microbiota activity through acetate binding promoting a proper immune response in the lungs.
Expression of GPR43 in Brown Adipogenesis Is Enhanced by Rosiglitazone and Controlled by PPARγ/RXR Heterodimerization. Jiamiao Hu;Arong Zhou;Peter C K Cheung;Baodong Zheng;Shaoxiao Zeng;Shaoling Lin. 2018. PPAR Res. 2018. PMID: 29861709

GPR43, a G-protein coupled receptor recognizing short-chain fatty acids, has been reported to participate in many biological functions of white adipocytes, such as adipogenesis and lipolysis. However, the functional role of GPR43 in brown adipocytes is still not clear. In this study, we investigated the effects of the PPARγ agonist rosiglitazone on GPR43 expression in brown adipogenesis. The results demonstrated that GPR43 was expressed during the late phase of brown adipocyte differentiation, which could be further augmented by adipogenic agent rosiglitazone treatment. The PPARγ/RXR heterodimerization was found to be the key transcription factor for this enhancing effect of rosiglitazone on GPR43 expression. Taken together, these results suggested GPR43 levels might be regulated by PPARγ-activated events during brown adipocytes differentiation and reflect the adipogenesis status of brown adipocytes.
Metabolite-Sensing Receptor Ffar2 Regulates Colonic Group 3 Innate Lymphoid Cells and Gut Immunity. Eunyoung Chun;Sydney Lavoie;Diogo Fonseca-Pereira;Sena Bae;Monia Michaud;Hamid R Hoveyda;Graeme L Fraser;Carey Ann Gallini Comeau;Jonathan N Glickman;Miles H Fuller;Brian T Layden;Wendy S Garrett. 2019. Immunity. 51. PMID: 31628054

Group 3 innate lymphoid cells (ILC3s) sense environmental signals that are critical for gut homeostasis and host defense. However, the metabolite-sensing G-protein-coupled receptors that regulate colonic ILC3s remain poorly understood. We found that colonic ILC3s expressed Ffar2, a microbial metabolite-sensing receptor, and that Ffar2 agonism promoted ILC3 expansion and function. Deficiency of Ffar2 in ILC3s decreased their in situ proliferation and ILC3-derived interleukin-22 (IL-22) production. This led to impaired gut epithelial function characterized by altered mucus-associated proteins and antimicrobial peptides and increased susceptibility to colonic injury and bacterial infection. Ffar2 increased IL-22+ CCR6+ ILC3s and influenced ILC3 abundance in colonic lymphoid tissues. Ffar2 agonism differentially activated AKT or ERK signaling and increased ILC3-derived IL-22 via an AKT and STAT3 axis. Our findings suggest that Ffar2 regulates colonic ILC3 proliferation and function, and they identify an ILC3-receptor signaling pathway modulating gut homeostasis and pathogen defense.
The Orphan G protein-coupled receptors GPR41 and GPR43 are activated by propionate and other short chain carboxylic acids. Andrew J Brown;Susan M Goldsworthy;Ashley A Barnes;Michelle M Eilert;Lili Tcheang;Dion Daniels;Alison I Muir;Mark J Wigglesworth;Ian Kinghorn;Neil J Fraser;Nicholas B Pike;Jay C Strum;Klaudia M Steplewski;Paul R Murdock;Julie C Holder;Fiona H Marshall;Philip G Szekeres;Shelagh Wilson;Diane M Ignar;Steve M Foord;Alan Wise;Simon J Dowell. 2002. J Biol Chem. 278. PMID: 12496283

GPR41 and GPR43 are related members of a homologous family of orphan G protein-coupled receptors that are tandemly encoded at a single chromosomal locus in both humans and mice. We identified the acetate anion as an agonist of human GPR43 during routine ligand bank screening in yeast. This activity was confirmed after transient transfection of GPR43 into mammalian cells using Ca(2+) mobilization and [(35)S]guanosine 5'-O-(3-thiotriphosphate) binding assays and by coexpression with GIRK G protein-regulated potassium channels in Xenopus laevis oocytes. Other short chain carboxylic acid anions such as formate, propionate, butyrate, and pentanoate also had agonist activity. GPR41 is related to GPR43 (52% similarity; 43% identity) and was activated by similar ligands but with differing specificity for carbon chain length, with pentanoate being the most potent agonist. A third family member, GPR42, is most likely a recent gene duplication of GPR41 and may be a pseudogene. GPR41 was expressed primarily in adipose tissue, whereas the highest levels of GPR43 were found in immune cells. The identity of the cognate physiological ligands for these receptors is not clear, although propionate is known to occur in vivo at high concentrations under certain pathophysiological conditions.
Roles of short-chain fatty acids receptors, GPR41 and GPR43 on colonic functions. H Tazoe;Y Otomo;I Kaji;R Tanaka;S-I Karaki;A Kuwahara. 2008. J Physiol Pharmacol. 59 Suppl 2. PMID: 18812643

Short chain fatty acids (SCFAs) are the major anions in the large intestine. They are produced by a bacterial fermentation of dietary fiber. SCFAs are known to have a variety of physiological and pathphysiological effects on intestine. However, the mechanisms by which intraluminal SCFAs are sensed are not known. In 2003, two orphan G protein coupled receptors (GPRs), GPR41 and GPR43, have been cloned and demonstrated to be receptors for SCFAs. Thus, we had attempted to make antibodies raised against GPR43 and GPR41 to elucidate the roles of SCFAs on colonic functions. We have also evaluated the effects of SCFAs on colonic motility to define the physiological roles on luminal SCFAs. In rat and human colon, GPR43 protein was detected by Western blot analysis in extracts of whole wall and separated mucosa, but not in muscle plus submucosa extract. By immunohistochemistry, GPR43 immunoreactivity was localized with enteroendocrine cells expressing peptide YY, whereas 5-HT immunoreactive enteroendocrine cells were not immunoreactive for GPR43. GPR41 immunoreactivity was also found in human colon. In functional studies, propionate and butyrate concentration-dependently (10 microM - 10 mM) induced phasic and tonic contractions in rat colonic circular muscle. The propionate-induced phasic contraction was attenuated by atropine, tetrodotoxin and the 5-HT(4) receptor antagonists SB204070. However, acetate did not induce phasic or tonic contractions. Propionate-induced responses were not observed in mucosal free preparations. The present results suggest that the SCFA-induced physiological effects on colonic functions might be attributable to the activation of SCFA receptors on epithelial cells in the colon.
Diet-induced obesity up-regulates the abundance of GPR43 and GPR120 in a tissue specific manner. Lauren M Cornall;Michael L Mathai;Deanne H Hryciw;Andrew J McAinch. 2011. Cell Physiol Biochem. 28. PMID: 22178946

BACKGROUND/AIMS: GPR43 and GPR120 have recently been deorphanised as receptors for fatty acids. Fatty acids mediate a variety of metabolic processes in the body, however, the effect these receptors have on metabolism is not fully understood. Here, we characterise the effect of diet-induced obesity on the expression of GPR43 and GPR120 in tissues important in maintaining metabolic health. METHODS: Six-week old male Sprague Dawley rats were fed either a high fat diet (HFD; 22% fat) or control diet (5% fat; n = 8-9/group) for 12 weeks. Rats were euthanized and the heart, liver, soleus and extensor digitorum longus (EDL) skeletal muscles were excised. GPR43 and GPR120 receptor abundance was quantified by 'real-time' PCR. RESULTS: GPR43 mRNA abundance was significantly up-regulated by a HFD in liver and soleus and EDL skeletal muscles compared to control (p ≤ 0.05). Whilst a HFD significantly up-regulated GPR120 gene transcripts in cardiac tissue and EDL skeletal muscle when compare to control (p ≤ 0.05). CONCLUSION: We have shown for the first time that up-regulation of GPR43 and GPR120 in response to a HFD, is tissue specific. This suggests these receptors have different roles in mediating metabolic function in a number of tissues in the human body.
The gut microbiota suppresses insulin-mediated fat accumulation via the short-chain fatty acid receptor GPR43. Ikuo Kimura;Kentaro Ozawa;Daisuke Inoue;Takeshi Imamura;Kumi Kimura;Takeshi Maeda;Kazuya Terasawa;Daiji Kashihara;Kanako Hirano;Taeko Tani;Tomoyuki Takahashi;Satoshi Miyauchi;Go Shioi;Hiroshi Inoue;Gozoh Tsujimoto. 2013. Nat Commun. 4. PMID: 23652017

The gut microbiota affects nutrient acquisition and energy regulation of the host, and can influence the development of obesity, insulin resistance, and diabetes. During feeding, gut microbes produce short-chain fatty acids, which are important energy sources for the host. Here we show that the short-chain fatty acid receptor GPR43 links the metabolic activity of the gut microbiota with host body energy homoeostasis. We demonstrate that GPR43-deficient mice are obese on a normal diet, whereas mice overexpressing GPR43 specifically in adipose tissue remain lean even when fed a high-fat diet. Raised under germ-free conditions or after treatment with antibiotics, both types of mice have a normal phenotype. We further show that short-chain fatty acid-mediated activation of GPR43 suppresses insulin signalling in adipocytes, which inhibits fat accumulation in adipose tissue and promotes the metabolism of unincorporated lipids and glucose in other tissues. These findings establish GPR43 as a sensor for excessive dietary energy, thereby controlling body energy utilization while maintaining metabolic homoeostasis.
β-Arrestin 2 mediates G protein-coupled receptor 43 signals to nuclear factor-κB. Su Ui Lee;Hyun Ju In;Mi So Kwon;Bi-oh Park;Minmi Jo;Mun-Ock Kim;Sungchan Cho;Sangku Lee;Hyun-Jun Lee;Young Shin Kwak;Sunhong Kim. 2013. Biol Pharm Bull. 36. PMID: 23985900

G-protein coupled receptor 43 (GPR43) serves as a receptor for short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), implicated in neutrophil migration and inflammatory cytokine production. However, the intracellular signaling pathway mediating GPR43 signaling remains unclear. Here, we show that β-arrestin 2 mediates the internalization of GPR43 by agonist. Agonism of GPR43 reduced the phosphorylation and nuclear translocation of nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB), which was relieved by short interfering RNA (siRNA) of β-arrestin 2. Subsequently, mRNA expression of proinflammatory cytokines, interleukin (IL)-6 and IL-1β, was downregulated by activation of GPR43 and knockdown of β-arrestin 2 recovered the expression of the cytokines. Taken together, these results suggest that GPR43 may be a plausible target for a variety of inflammatory diseases.
The SCFA Receptor GPR43 and Energy Metabolism. Ikuo Kimura;Daisuke Inoue;Kanako Hirano;Gozoh Tsujimoto. 2014. Front Endocrinol (Lausanne). 5. PMID: 24926285

Free fatty acids (FFAs) are essential nutrients and act as signaling molecules in various cellular processes via binding with FFA receptors. Of these receptors, GPR43 is activated by short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs; e.g., acetate, propionate, and butyrate). During feeding, SCFAs are produced by microbial fermentation of dietary fiber in the gut, and these SCFAs become important energy sources for the host. The gut microbiota affects nutrient acquisition and energy regulation of the host and can influence the development of obesity, insulin resistance, and diabetes. Recently, GPR43 has been reported to regulate host energy homeostasis in the gastrointestinal tract and adipose tissues. Hence, GPR43 is also thought to be a potential drug target for metabolic disorders, such as obesity and diabetes. In this review, we summarize the identification, structure, and activities of GPR43, with a focus on host energy regulation, and present an essential overview of our current understanding of its physiological roles in host energy regulation that is mediated by gut microbiota. We also discuss the potential for GPR43 as a therapeutic target.
Oleic acid enhances G protein coupled receptor 43 expression in bovine intramuscular adipocytes but not in subcutaneous adipocytes. K Y Chung;S B Smith;S H Choi;B J Johnson. 2016. J Anim Sci. 94. PMID: 27285685

We hypothesized that fatty acids would differentially affect G protein coupled receptor (GPR) 43 mRNA expression and GPR43 protein concentrations in bovine intramuscular (IM) and subcutaneous (SC) adipocytes. The GPR43 protein was detected in bovine liver, pancreas, and semimembranosus (MUS) muscle in samples taken at slaughter. Similarly, GPR43 protein levels were similar in IM adipose tissue and SM muscle but was barely detectable in SC adipose tissue. Primary cultures of IM and SC stromal vascular cells were isolated from bovine adipose tissues. Oleic acid (100 μ) stimulated PPARγ gene expression and decreased stearoyl-CoA desaturase (SCD) gene expression but had no effect on GPR43 gene expression, which was readily detectable in both IM and SC adipocytes. Differentiation cocktail (Diff; 10 μ insulin, 4 μ dexamethasone, and 10 μ ciglitizone) stimulated CCAAT/enhancer-binding protein β (C/EBPβ) and PPARγ gene expression in SC but not IM adipocytes, but Diff increased SCD gene expression in both cell types. Linoleic acid (10 µ) increased PPARγ gene expression relative to Diff cocktail in SC adipocytes, whereas linoleic acid and α-linolenic decreased SCD gene expression relative to control adipocytes and adipocytes incubated with Diff ( < 0.05). Increasing concentrations of oleic acid (1, 10, 100, and 500 μM) increased GPR43 protein and mRNA expression in IM but not SC adipocytes. These data indicated that oleic acid alters mRNA and protein concentrations of GPR43 in bovine IM adipocytes.
Invited review: nutrient-sensing receptors for free fatty acids and hydroxycarboxylic acids in farm animals. M Mielenz. 2016. Animal. 11. PMID: 27829484

Data on nutrient sensing by free fatty acid receptors (FFAR1, FFAR2, FFAR3, FFAR4) and hydroxycarboxylic acid receptors (HCAR1, HCAR2) are increasing for human or rodent models. Both receptor families link intestinal fermentation by the microbiota and energy metabolism with cellular responses. Therefore, this finding provides a link that is independent of the only function of the fermentation products as energy substrates. For example, these reactions are associated with insulin secretion, regulation of lipolysis, adipose tissue differentiation and innate immune responses. In farm animals, the available data on both receptor families from the intestine and other tissues increase. However, currently, the data are primarily linked with the distribution of receptor messenger RNAs (mRNAs) and more rarely with proteins. Functional data on the importance of these receptors in farm animal species is not abundant and is often associated with the immune system. In certain farm animal species, the receptors were cloned and ligand binding was characterised. In chicken, only one FFAR2 was recently identified using genome analysis, which is contradictory to a study using an FFAR1 small interfering RNA. The chicken FFAR2 is composed of more than 20 paralogs. No data on HCAR1 or HCAR2 exist in this species. Currently, in pigs, most available data are on the mRNA distribution within intestine. However, no FFAR1 expression has been shown in this organ to date. In addition to FFAR2, an orthologue (FFAR2-like) with the highest abundance in intestine has been reported. The data on HCAR1 and HCAR2 in pigs is scarce. In ruminants, most of the currently available information on receptor distribution is linked to mRNA data and shows the expression, for example, in mammary gland and adipose tissue. However, some protein data on FFAR2 and FFAR1 protein has been reported and functional data availability is slowly increasing. The receptor mRNAs of HCAR1 and HCAR2 are expressed in bovine. The HCAR2 protein has been demonstrated in certain tissues, such as liver and fat. Because of the physiological importance of both receptor families in human life science, more studies that analyse the physiological significance of both receptor families in animal science may be performed within the next several years.
Cloning, molecular characterization, and spatial and developmental expression analysis of GPR41 and GPR43 genes in New Zealand rabbits. C Y Fu;L Liu;Q Gao;X Y Sui;F C Li. 2017. Animal. 11. PMID: 28241897

Short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) play a regulatory role in various physiological processes in mammals and act as endogenous ligands for the G protein-coupled receptors (GPR) 41 and 43. The role of GPR41 and GPR43 in mediating SCFA signaling in the rabbit remains unclear. The present study was to investigate the sequence of the GPR41 and GPR43 messenger RNA (mRNA) and their expression pattern in different tissues and developmental stages in New Zealand rabbit. Comparison of genomic sequences in GenBank using the Basic Local Alignment Search Tool program suggested that the New Zealand rabbit GPR41 mRNA has high similarities with the human (84%), bovine (84%) and Capra hircus (84%) genes. Similarly, GPR43 mRNA has high similarity with the rat (84%) and mouse (84%) genes. Real-time PCR results indicated that GPR41 and GPR43 mRNA were expressed throughout rabbit's whole development and were expressed in several tissues. G protein-coupled receptor 41 and GPR43 mRNA were most highly expressed in pancreas (P<0.05) and s.c. adipose tissue (P<0.05), respectively. The expression levels of GPR41 mRNA was down-regulated in duodenum, cecum (P<0.05) and pancreas and up-regulated in jejunum, ileum, adipose tissue and spleen during growth. G protein-coupled receptor 43GPR43 mRNA was highly expressed in the duodenum, jejunum, ileum, colon, cecum and lung at 15th day (P<0.05), whereas the expression levels in the pancreas and spleen increased later after birth, with the highest expression at 60th day (P<0.05).
Short-chain fatty acids, GPR41 and GPR43 ligands, inhibit TNF-α-induced MCP-1 expression by modulating p38 and JNK signaling pathways in human renal cortical epithelial cells. Mamiko Kobayashi;Daisuke Mikami;Hideki Kimura;Kazuko Kamiyama;Yukie Morikawa;Seiji Yokoi;Kenji Kasuno;Naoki Takahashi;Takanobu Taniguchi;Masayuki Iwano. 2017. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 486. PMID: 28322790

Short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), such as acetate, propionate, and butyrate, are produced predominantly by gut microbiota fermentation of dietary fiber. SCFAs are newly identified as endogenous ligands of two orphan G protein-coupled receptors, GPR41 and GPR43, which have the potential to modulate inflammation. Therefore, GPR41 and GPR43 may mediate the link between the gut microbiome status and various disease conditions including renal inflammation. This study aimed at investigating whether SCFAs activate GPR41 and GPR43, and thereby exert anti-inflammatory effects in human renal cortical epithelial cells (HRCEs) as a main component of kidney tissue. Immunohistochemical analyses of human renal biopsy specimens revealed the expression of GPR41 and GPR43 protein in the distal renal tubules and collecting tubules. TNF-α increased the expression of monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1), a potential fibrotic inducer, at least partly via enhancing phosphorylation of p38 and JNK in HRCEs. SCFAs, especially propionate, attenuated TNF-α- stimulated MCP-1 expression by inhibiting the phosphorylation of p38 and JNK. This inhibitory effect was considerably attenuated by an inactivator of the Gi/o-type G protein and a Gβγ (i/o) blocker, but not by a Gα (i/o) blocker. Furthermore, SCFA-mediated inhibition of MCP-1 expression was significantly blocked by siRNA-induced gene silencing of GPR41 and GPR43. In conclusion, SCFAs lowered TNF-α-induced MCP-1 expression by reducing phosphorylation of p38 and JNK in a GPR41/43-dependent manner in HRCEs, suggesting that SCFA modification may be a new therapeutic tool for preventing progression of renal inflammation and fibrosis.
Similarities and differences between the responses induced in human phagocytes through activation of the medium chain fatty acid receptor GPR84 and the short chain fatty acid receptor FFA2R. Martina Sundqvist;Karin Christenson;André Holdfeldt;Michael Gabl;Jonas Mårtensson;Lena Björkman;Regis Dieckmann;Claes Dahlgren;Huamei Forsman. 2018. Biochim Biophys Acta Mol Cell Res. 1865. PMID: 29477577

GPR84 is a recently de-orphanized member of the G-protein coupled receptor (GPCR) family recognizing medium chain fatty acids, and has been suggested to play important roles in inflammation. Due to the lack of potent and selective GPR84 ligands, the basic knowledge related to GPR84 functions is very limited. In this study, we have characterized the GPR84 activation profile and regulation mechanism in human phagocytes, using two recently developed small molecules that specifically target GPR84 agonistically (ZQ16) and antagonistically (GLPG1205), respectively. Compared to our earlier characterization of the short chain fatty acid receptor FFA2R which is functionally expressed in neutrophils but not in monocytes, GPR84 is expressed in both cell types and in monocyte-derived macrophages. In neutrophils, the GPR84 agonist had an activation profile very similar to that of FFA2R. The GPR84-mediated superoxide release was low in naïve cells, but the response could be significantly primed by TNFα and by the actin cytoskeleton disrupting agent Latrunculin A. Similar to that of FFA2R, a desensitization mechanism bypassing the actin cytoskeleton was utilized by GPR84. All ZQ16-mediated cellular responses were sensitive to GLPG1205, confirming the GPR84-dependency. Finally, our data of in vivo transmigrated tissue neutrophils indicate that both GPR84 and FFA2R are involved in neutrophil recruitment processes in vivo. In summary, we show functional similarities but also some important differences between GPR84 and FFA2R in human phagocytes, thus providing some mechanistic insights into GPR84 regulation in blood neutrophils and cells recruited to an aseptic inflammatory site in vivo.
Decreased expression of G-protein-coupled receptors GPR43 and GPR109a in psoriatic skin can be restored by topical application of sodium butyrate. Alicja Krejner;Anika Bruhs;Ulrich Mrowietz;Ulrike Wehkamp;Thomas Schwarz;Agatha Schwarz. 2018. Arch Dermatol Res. 310. PMID: 30209581

The G-protein-coupled receptors GPR43 and GPR109a are known to play an important role in mediating anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer functions in the gut. Short-chain fatty acids, such as sodium butyrate (SB), are activators of GPR43 and GPR109a and thereby promote anti-inflammatory effects. The present study aimed to examine the expression of these receptors and their reaction to SB in psoriasis. Lesional and non-lesional biopsies of 6 psoriasis patients and of 4 controls were obtained and stained for GPR109a and GPR43. Ex vivo stimulation with SB was performed on fresh biopsy material. Lesional and non-lesional psoriatic skin showed a decreased expression of GPR109a and GPR43 on keratinocytes in comparison with control skin. Topical application of SB was able to increase the low-level expression of both receptors. The data suggest that SB by restoring the impaired expression of GPR109a and GPR43 might exert anti-inflammatory effects and may be utilized as a topical tool for the treatment of psoriasis, which has to be proven in future clinical trials.
The relationship between the effects of short-chain fatty acids on intestinal motility in vitro and GPR43 receptor activation. N B Dass;A K John;A K Bassil;C W Crumbley;W R Shehee;F P Maurio;G B T Moore;C M Taylor;G J Sanger. 2006. Neurogastroenterol Motil. 19. PMID: 17187590

The G protein-coupled receptors, GPR41 and GPR43, are activated by short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), with distinct rank order potencies. This study investigated the possibility that SCFAs modulate intestinal motility via these receptors. Luminal SCFA concentrations within the rat intestine were greatest in the caecum (c. 115 mmol L(-1)) and proximal colon. Using similar concentrations (0.1-100 mmol L(-1)), SCFAs were found to inhibit electrically evoked, neuronally mediated contractions of rat distal colon, possibly via a prejunctional site of action; this activity was independent of the presence or absence of the mucosa. By contrast, SCFAs reduced the amplitude but also reduced the threshold and increased the frequency of peristaltic contractions in guinea-pig terminal ileum. In each model, the rank-order of activity was acetate (C2) approximately propionate (C3) approximately butyrate (C4) > pentanoate (C5) approximately formate (C1), consistent with activity at the GPR43 receptor. GPR43 mRNA was expressed throughout the rat gut, with highest levels in the colon. However, the ability of SCFAs to inhibit neuronally mediated contractions of the colon was similar in tissues from wild-type and GPR43 gene knockout mice, with identical rank-orders of potency. In conclusion, SCFAs can modulate intestinal motility, but these effects can be independent of the GPR43 receptor.
Inulin-type fructans with prebiotic properties counteract GPR43 overexpression and PPARγ-related adipogenesis in the white adipose tissue of high-fat diet-fed mice. Evelyne M Dewulf;Patrice D Cani;Audrey M Neyrinck;Sam Possemiers;Ann Van Holle;Giulio G Muccioli;Louise Deldicque;Laure B Bindels;Barbara D Pachikian;Florence M Sohet;Eric Mignolet;Marc Francaux;Yvan Larondelle;Nathalie M Delzenne. 2010. J Nutr Biochem. 22. PMID: 21115338

Inulin-type fructans (ITF) are nondigestible/fermentable carbohydrates which are able - through the modification of the gut microbiota - to counteract high-fat (HF) diet-induced obesity, endotoxemia and related-metabolic alterations. However, their influence on adipose tissue metabolism has been poorly studied until now. The aim of this study was to assess the influence of ITF supplementation on adipose tissue metabolism, by focusing on a G protein-coupled receptor (GPR), GPR43, as a potential link between gut fermentation processes and white adipose tissue development. Male C57bl6/J mice were fed a standard diet or an HF diet without or with ITF (0.2 g/day per mouse) during 4 weeks. The HF diet induced an accumulation of large adipocytes, promoted peroxisome proliferator activated receptor gamma (PPARγ)-activated differentiation factors and led to a huge increase in GPR43 expression in the subcutaneous adipose tissue. All those effects were blunted by ITF treatment, which modulated the gut microbiota in favor of bifidobacteria at the expense of Roseburia spp. and of Clostridium cluster XIVa. The dietary modulation of GPR43 expression seems independent of endotoxemia, in view of data obtained in vivo (acute and chronic lipopolysaccharides treatment). In conclusion, ITF, which promote gut fermentation, paradoxically counteract GPR43 overexpression induced in the adipose tissue by an HF diet, a phenomenon that correlates with a beneficial effect on adiposity and with potential decrease in PPARγ-activated processes.