Objective: To investigate stearoyl-coenzyme A desaturase (SCD) 1 expression in obesity-prone C57BL/6 mice and in obesity-resistant FVB mice to explore the relationship of SCD1 expression and susceptibility to diet-induced obesity.
Research methods and procedures: Nine-week-old C57BL/6 and FVB mice were fed either a high- or low-fat diet for 8 weeks. Body weight and body composition were measured before and at weeks 4 and 8 of the study. Energy expenditure was measured at weeks 1 and 5 of the study. Hepatic SCD1 mRNA was measured at 72 hours and at the end of study. Plasma leptin and insulin concentrations were measured at the end of study.
Results: When C57BL/6 mice were switched to a calorie-dense high-fat diet, animals gained significantly more body weight than those maintained on a low-calorie density diet primarily due to increased fat mass accretion. Fat mass continued to accrue throughout 8 weeks of study. Increased calorie intake did not account for all weight gain. On the high-fat diet, C57BL/6 mice decreased their energy expenditure when compared with mice fed a low-fat diet. In response to 8 weeks of a high-fat diet, SCD1 gene expression in liver increased >2-fold. In contrast, feeding a high-fat diet did not change body weight, energy expenditure, or SCD1 expression in FVB mice.
Discussion: Our study showed that a high-fat hypercaloric diet increased body adiposity first by producing hyperphagia and then by decreasing energy expenditure of mice susceptible to diet-induced obesity. Consumption of a high-fat diet in species predisposed to obesity selectively increased SCD1 gene expression in liver.