Regulation of Insulin and Leptin Signaling by Muscle Suppressor of Cytokine Signaling 3 (SOCS3)
Hulver, Matthew W.
McMillan, Ryan P.
Kershaw, Erin E.
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Skeletal muscle resistance to the key metabolic hormones, leptin and insulin, is an early defect in obesity. Suppressor of cytokine signaling 3 (SOCS3) is a major negative regulator of both leptin and insulin signaling, thereby implicating SOCS3 in the pathogenesis of obesity and associated metabolic abnormalities. Here, we demonstrate that SOCS3 mRNA expression is increased in murine skeletal muscle in the setting of diet-induced and genetic obesity, inflammation, and hyperlipidemia. To further evaluate the contribution of muscle SOCS3 to leptin and insulin resistance in obesity, we generated transgenic mice with muscle-specific overexpression of SOCS3 (MCK/SOCS3 mice). Despite similar body weight, MCK/SOCS3 mice develop impaired systemic and muscle-specific glucose homeostasis and insulin action based on glucose and insulin tolerance tests, hyperinsulinemic-euglycemic clamps, and insulin signaling studies. With regards to leptin action, MCK/SOCS3 mice exhibit suppressed basal and leptin-stimulated activity and phosphorylation of alpha2 AMP-activated protein kinase (α2AMPK) and its downstream target, acetyl-CoA carboxylase (ACC). Muscle SOCS3 overexpression also suppresses leptin-regulated genes involved in fatty acid oxidation and mitochondrial function. These studies demonstrate that SOC3 within skeletal muscle is a critical regulator of leptin and insulin action and that increased SOCS may mediate insulin and leptin resistance in obesity.