AMPK as a Therapeutic Target for Treating Metabolic Diseases

Trends Endocrinol Metab. 2017 Aug;28(8):545-560. doi: 10.1016/j.tem.2017.05.004. Epub 2017 Jun 21.


The AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) is a central regulator of multiple metabolic pathways and may have therapeutic importance for treating obesity, insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes (T2D), non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), and cardiovascular disease (CVD). Given the ubiquitous expression of AMPK, it has been a challenge to evaluate which tissue types may be most beneficially poised for mediating the positive metabolic effects of AMPK-centered treatments. In this review we evaluate the metabolic phenotypes of transgenic mouse models in which AMPK expression and function have been manipulated, and the impact this has on controlling lipid metabolism, glucose homeostasis, and inflammation. This information may be useful for guiding the development of AMPK-targeted therapeutics to treat chronic metabolic diseases.

Keywords: NAFLD; NASH; adipose tissue; atherosclerosis; beige adipose tissue; brown adipose tissue; macrophages.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adenylate Kinase / physiology*
  • Animals
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / therapy
  • Humans
  • Insulin Resistance
  • Lipid Metabolism
  • Metabolic Diseases / genetics
  • Metabolic Diseases / metabolism
  • Metabolic Diseases / therapy*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Transgenic
  • Molecular Targeted Therapy / methods*
  • Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease / therapy
  • Obesity / therapy


  • Adenylate Kinase