Reduced central and peripheral inflammatory responses and increased mitochondrial activity contribute to diet-induced obesity resistance in {WSB}/{EiJ} mice

Publication Type:

Journal Article


Scientific Reports, Volume 9, p.19696 (2019)




Energy imbalance due to excess of calories is considered to be a major player in the current worldwide obesity pandemic and could be accompanied by systemic and central inflammation and mitochondrial dysfunctions. This hypothesis was tested by comparing the wild-derived diet-induced obesity- (DIO-) resistant mouse strain WSB/EiJ to the obesity-prone C57BL/6J strain. We analysed circulating and hypothalamic markers of inflammatory status and hypothalamic mitochondrial activity in both strains exposed to high-fat diet (HFD). We further analysed the regulations of hypothalamic genes involved in inflammation and mitochondrial pathways by high throughput microfluidic qPCR on RNA extracted from laser micro-dissected arcuate (ARC) and paraventricular (PVN) hypothalamic nuclei. HFD induced increased body weight gain, circulating levels of leptin, cholesterol, HDL and LDL in C57BL/6J whereas WSB/EiJ mice displayed a lower inflammatory status, both peripherally (lower levels of circulating cytokines) and centrally (less activated microglia in the hypothalamus) as well as more reactive mitochondria in the hypothalamus. The gene expression data analysis allowed identifying strain-specific hypothalamic metabolic pathways involved in the respective responses to HFD. Our results point to the involvement of hypothalamic inflammatory and mitochondrial pathways as key factors in the control of energy homeostasis and the resistance to DIO.