Poster ATVB2022 MDG.pptx
Dolichol is a nonsterol isoprenoid derived from the mevalonate pathway. Dehydrodolichyl diphosphate synthase subunit (DHDDS) is a branch point enzyme that - in complex with Nogo-B receptor (NgBR) - catalyzes the first committed step of dolichol biosynthesis. Next, dolichol is phosphorylated, and used as carrier for oligosaccharides, which are transferred to nascent proteins in the N-linked glycosylation pathway. A growing body of evidence highlights the importance of N-linked glycosylation in regulating plasma lipid levels in humans. However, the underlying molecular mechanisms are largely unexplored. Therefore, the goal of this project is to define the role of dolichol biosynthesis in lipid metabolism in the liver, the major organ for the biosynthesis and clearance of lipoproteins. We used Adeno-Associated Virus (AAV)-mediated delivery of CRISPR/Cas9 (AAV-CRISPR) to delete Dhdds in mouse liver, to inhibit the hepatic biosynthesis of dolichol. Mice were injected with AAV-CRISPR or saline as control, and fed a high-fat diet for 4 to 12 weeks. Surprisingly, Dhdds liver-specific knockout (LSKO) mice gained less weight compared to control mice. Plasma total cholesterol and triglyceride levels were also reduced over time in Dhdds LSKO mice. Moreover, we observed less cholesterol content in the high-density lipoprotein (HDL) fractions as well as less triglycerides in very-low-density lipoproteins (VLDL). At the cellular level, Dhdds LSKO mice showed hepatic endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress and decreased N-linked glycosylation. In addition, we observed significant downregulation of Sterol Regulatory Element-Binding Protein 1c (Srebp-1c) - a key regulator of de novo lipogenesis (DNL) - and downstream-regulated genes in the DNL pathway. Conversely, the expression of genes regulating cholesterol biosynthesis was unaffected. Taken together, our data show an important role for hepatic dolichol biosynthesis in regulating plasma lipids, potentially through modulation of Srebp-1c expression and DNL.