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An Urban Diet Impairs Tibial Vasodilation in Mourning Doves (Zenaida macroura)

Description

Birds maintain resting plasma glucose concentrations (pGlu) nearly twice that of comparably sized mammals. Despite this, birds do not incur much of the oxidative tissue damage that might be expected from a high pGlu. Their ability to stave off oxidative

Birds maintain resting plasma glucose concentrations (pGlu) nearly twice that of comparably sized mammals. Despite this, birds do not incur much of the oxidative tissue damage that might be expected from a high pGlu. Their ability to stave off oxidative damage allows birds to serve as a negative model of hyperglycemia-related complications, making them ideal for the development of new diabetes treatments with the potential for human application. Previous studies conducted by the Sweazea Lab at Arizona State University aimed to use diet as a means to raise blood glucose in mourning doves (Zenaida macroura) in order to better understand the mechanisms they utilize to stave off oxidative damage. These protocols used dietary interventions—a 60% high fat (HF) “chow” diet, and a high carbohydrate (HC) white bread diet—but were unsuccessful in inducing pathologies. Based on this research, we hypothesized that a model of an urban diet (high in fat, refined carbohydrates, and sodium) might impair vasodilation, as the effect of this diet on birds is currently unknown. We found that tibial vasodilation was significantly impaired in birds fed an urban diet compared to those fed a seed diet. Unexpectedly, vasodilation in the urban diet group was comparable to data of wild-caught birds from previous research, possibly indicating that the birds had already been eating a diet similar to this study’s urban diet before they were caught. This may constitute evidence that the seed diet improved vasodilation while the urban diet more closely mimicked the diet of the birds before the trial, suggesting that the model of the urban diet acted as the control diet in this context. This study is the first step in elucidating avian mechanisms for dealing with diabetogenic diets and has potential to aid in the development of treatments for humans with metabolic syndrome.

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2020-05

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The Role of Lipolysis in Regulating Plasma Glucose Concentrations in Mourning Doves

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Birds have unusually high plasma glucose concentrations compared to mammals of similar size despite their high metabolic rate. While birds use lipids as their main source of energy, it is still unclear how and why they maintain high plasma glucose

Birds have unusually high plasma glucose concentrations compared to mammals of similar size despite their high metabolic rate. While birds use lipids as their main source of energy, it is still unclear how and why they maintain high plasma glucose concentrations. To investigate a potential underlying mechanism, this study looks at the role of lipolysis in glucose homeostasis. The purpose of this study is to examine the effects of decreased glycerol availability (through inhibition of lipolysis) on plasma glucose concentrations in mourning doves. The hypothesis is that decreased availability of glycerol will result in decreased production of glucose through gluconeogenesis leading to reduced plasma glucose concentrations. In the morning of each experiment, mourning doves were collected at the Arizona State University Tempe campus, and randomized into either a control group (0.9% saline) or experimental group (acipimox, 50mg/kg BM). Blood samples were collected prior to treatment, and at 1, 2, and 3 hours post-treatment. At 3 hours, doves were euthanized, and tissue samples were collected for analysis. Acipimox treatment resulted in significant increases in blood glucose concentrations at 1 and 2 hours post- treatment as well as renal triglyceride concentrations at 3 hours post-treatment. Change in plasma free glycerol between 0h and 3h followed an increasing trend for the acipimox treated animals, and a decreasing trend in the saline treated animals. These results do not support the hypothesis that inhibition of lipolysis should decrease blood glycerol and blood glucose levels. Rather, the effects of acipimox in glucose homeostasis appear to differ significantly between birds and mammals suggesting differing mechanisms for glucose homeostasis.

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2015-05

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The Impact of Different Normalization Methods on Western Blot Results

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Reducing the amount of error and introduced data variability increases the accuracy of Western blot results. In this study, different methods of normalization for loading differences and data alignment were explored with respect to their impact on Western blot results.

Reducing the amount of error and introduced data variability increases the accuracy of Western blot results. In this study, different methods of normalization for loading differences and data alignment were explored with respect to their impact on Western blot results. GAPDH was compared to the LI-COR Revert total protein stain as a loading control. The impact of normalizing data to a control condition, which is commonly done to align Western blot data distributed over several immunoblots, was also investigated. Specifically, this study addressed whether normalization to a small subset of distinct controls on each immunoblot increases pooled data variability compared to a larger set of controls. Protein expression data for NOX-2 and SOD-2 from a study investigating the protective role of the bradykinin type 1 receptor in angiotensin-II induced left ventricle remodeling were used to address these questions but are also discussed in the context of the original study. The comparison of GAPDH and Revert total protein stain as a loading control was done by assessing their correlation and comparing how they affected protein expression results. Additionally, the impact of treatment on GAPDH was investigated. To assess how normalization to different combinations of controls influences data variability, protein data were normalized to the average of 5 controls, the average of 2 controls, or an average vehicle and the results by treatment were compared. The results of this study demonstrated that GAPDH expression is not affected by angiotensin-II or bradykinin type 1 receptor antagonist R-954 and is a less sensitive loading control compared to Revert total protein stain. Normalization to the average of 5 controls tended to reduce pooled data variability compared to 2 controls. Lastly, the results of this study provided preliminary evidence that R-954 does not alter the expression of NOX-2 or SOD-2 to an expression profile that would be expected to explain the protection it confers against Ang-II induced left ventricle remodeling.

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2021-05

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Changes in Weight Status and the Intestinal Microbiota among College Students

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The transition to college has been identified as a vulnerable period for weight gain and the onset of obesity. Research has shown that the gut microbiota is different in obese compared to lean individuals, but a period of weight gain

The transition to college has been identified as a vulnerable period for weight gain and the onset of obesity. Research has shown that the gut microbiota is different in obese compared to lean individuals, but a period of weight gain has never been studied in free-living individuals. The objective of this longitudinal, observational study was to assess the association between changes in the intestinal microbiota and weight-related outcomes in healthy college students living in on-campus dormitories at Arizona State University (n=39). Anthropometric measures and fecal samples were collected at the beginning and end of the school year, and microbial relative abundance for A. muciniphila, F. prausnitzii, R. gnavus, and L. acidophilus was measured through qPCR analyses. In this population, body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference (WC) increased by 0.97 ± 1.28 kg/m2 and 2.64 ± 4.90 cm, respectively. Wilcoxon-Rank tests revealed that R. gnavus fold change was significantly different between groups of weight loss/maintenance and weight gain ≥ 5% body weight (0.14 [-0.21, 0.64], n=24 vs. -0.14 [-0.92, 0.05], n=15, respectively; p=0.028). Correlation analyses suggested a significant negative association between A. muciniphila fold change and both % WC change and % BMI change (r= -0.66; p<0.01 and r= -0.33; p=0.04, respectively). However, multivariate regression analysis controlling for sex and race/ethnicity showed a significant association between A. muciniphila and % WC change, but not % BMI change (R2= 0.53; p<0.01 and R2= 0.24; p=0.15). F. prausnitzii was not associated with weight-related outcomes in this sample. L. acidophilus was excluded from study analyses after subsequent qPCR trials revealed no amplification in participant samples. Overall, this was the first study to show a relationship between A. muciniphila fold change and weight-related outcomes over a period of weight gain. Specifically, A. muciniphila was strongly negatively associated with WC in this sample. Further research is needed to more accurately describe these associations and potential mechanisms associated with the shift in gut microbiota observed with weight gain. Findings from future research may be used to develop interventions for college students aiming to shift the gut microbiota to prevent weight gain.

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Date Created
2017

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Meal-time Matters: An 8-week Randomized Control Trial to Examine the Effects of a Daily 18-hour Fast on Diet Quality in College Students

Description

ABSTRACT

Background. College students’ modifiable health behaviors, including unhealthful eating patterns, predispose them to risk for future cardiometabolic conditions.

Purpose. This novel 8-week randomized control parallel-arm study compared the effects of a daily 18-hour Time-Restricted Feeding protocol vs. an 8-hour fast

ABSTRACT

Background. College students’ modifiable health behaviors, including unhealthful eating patterns, predispose them to risk for future cardiometabolic conditions.

Purpose. This novel 8-week randomized control parallel-arm study compared the effects of a daily 18-hour Time-Restricted Feeding protocol vs. an 8-hour fast on diet quality in college students. Secondary outcomes were resting morning blood pressure, biomarkers of glucose regulation, biomarkers of lipid metabolism, and anthropometric measures.

Methods. Eighteen healthy college students (age = 23 ± 4 years; BMI = 23.2 ± 2.3 kg/m2; MET = 58.8 ± 32.9 min/wk) completed this study. Participants were randomized to a daily 18-hour fasting protocol (Intervention; n = 8) or a daily 8-hour fasting protocol (Control; n = 10) for eight weeks. One ‘cheat’ day was permitted each week. Outcomes were measured at weeks 0 (baseline), 4, and 8. A non-parametric Mann Whitney U test was used to compare the week 4 change from baseline between groups. Statistical significance was set at p≤0.05.

Results. Diet quality (p = 0.030) and body weight (p = 0.016) improved from baseline to week 4 for the INV group in comparison to the CON group. The data suggest these improvements may be related to reductions in snacking frequency and increased breakfast consumption. Fasting blood glucose and hip circumference tended to improve for the INV group in comparison to the CON group (p = 0.091 and p = 0.100). However, saturated fat intake tended to increase in the INV group in comparison to the CON group (p = 0.064). Finally, there were no treatment differences between groups (p>0.05) for the 4-week change in total calories, dietary vitamin C, added sugars, resting systolic blood pressure, resting diastolic blood pressure, insulin, homeostatic model assessment for insulin resistance (HOMA-IR), low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, triglycerides, high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, waist circumference, or MET.

Conclusion. These data, although preliminary, suggest that the 18-hour fasting protocol was effective for improving diet quality and reducing weight in comparison to the 8-hour fasting protocol in healthy college students. Future intervention trials will need to confirm these findings and determine the long-term relevance of these improvements for health outcomes.

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Date Created
2020