Sujith Rajan, PhD

Charles Trey, MD Memorial Liver Scholar Award
$225,000 over three years

NYU Grossman Long Island School of Medicine

Role of adipose MTP in the regulation of plasma lipids and hepatic steatosis
Mentor: M Mahmood Hussain, PhD

Obesity happens when too much fat builds up in the body. Fat is stored in special cells called adipocytes (fat cells). Obesity is linked to many health problems, including diabetes, liver disease, and certain cancers. One of the ways obesity causes these issues is through its impact on fat cells, disrupting normal cell function and release of fatty acids and proteins from it. When too much fat builds up in the liver, it can lead to liver disease.

In our previous research, we found that a protein called MTP, found in fat cells, plays a crucial role in how fat is stored and used in the body. When MTP interacts with another protein, ATGL in fat cells, it can interfere with the breakdown of fat. When we removed this protein from fat cells in mice and fed them a high-fat diet, they gained less weight, had better insulin sensitivity, and showed less fat accumulation in the liver. This was surprising because usually, high levels of fat in the blood lead to fat accumulation in the liver.

Our research suggests that the interaction between MTP and another protein ATGL in fat cells influences how fat is processed and stored in the liver. We plan to further investigate this interaction and how it affects liver fat accumulation in obesity. Our studies will help in understanding how fat cells communicate and affect fat accumulation in the liver and aid in treating excess fat accumulation in the liver.

Last updated on January 23rd, 2024 at 04:06 pm

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