Acetic acid upregulates the expression of genes for fatty acid oxidation enzymes in liver to suppress body fat accumulation

J Agric Food Chem. 2009 Jul 8;57(13):5982-6. doi: 10.1021/jf900470c.


We investigated the effect of acetic acid (AcOH) on the prevention of obesity in high-fat-fed mice. The mice were intragastrically administrated with water or 0.3 or 1.5% AcOH for 6 weeks. AcOH administration inhibited the accumulation of body fat and hepatic lipids without changing food consumption or skeletal muscle weight. Significant increases were observed in the expressions of genes for peroxisome-proliferator-activated receptor alpha (PPARalpha) and for fatty-acid-oxidation- and thermogenesis-related proteins: acetyl-CoA oxidase (ACO), carnitine palmitoyl transferase-1 (CPT-1), and uncoupling protein-2 (UCP-2), in the liver of the AcOH-treatment groups. PPARalpha, ACO, CPT-1, and UCP-2 gene expressions were increased in vitro by acetate addition to HepG2 cells. However, the effects were not observed in cells depleted of alpha2 5'-AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) by siRNA. In conclusion, AcOH suppresses accumulation of body fat and liver lipids by upregulation of genes for PPARalpha and fatty-acid-oxidation-related proteins by alpha2 AMPK mediation in the liver.

MeSH terms

  • Acetic Acid / pharmacology*
  • Acetyl-CoA Carboxylase / genetics
  • Animals
  • Carnitine O-Palmitoyltransferase / genetics
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Fatty Acids / metabolism*
  • Hepatoblastoma
  • Humans
  • Ion Channels / genetics
  • Lipids / analysis
  • Lipogenesis / genetics*
  • Liver / chemistry
  • Liver / enzymology*
  • Liver Neoplasms
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mitochondrial Proteins / genetics
  • Obesity / metabolism*
  • Oxidation-Reduction
  • PPAR alpha / genetics
  • Uncoupling Protein 2
  • Up-Regulation / drug effects*


  • Fatty Acids
  • Ion Channels
  • Lipids
  • Mitochondrial Proteins
  • PPAR alpha
  • UCP2 protein, human
  • Ucp2 protein, mouse
  • Uncoupling Protein 2
  • Carnitine O-Palmitoyltransferase
  • Acetyl-CoA Carboxylase
  • Acetic Acid