Leptin enhances hypothalamic lactate dehydrogenase A (LDHA)-dependent glucose sensing to lower glucose production in high-fat-fed rats

J Biol Chem. 2018 Mar 16;293(11):4159-4166. doi: 10.1074/jbc.RA117.000838. Epub 2018 Jan 26.


The responsiveness of glucose sensing per se to regulate whole-body glucose homeostasis is dependent on the ability of a rise in glucose to lower hepatic glucose production and increase peripheral glucose uptake in vivo In both rodents and humans, glucose sensing is lost in diabetes and obesity, but the site(s) of impairment remains elusive. Here, we first report that short-term high-fat feeding disrupts hypothalamic glucose sensing to lower glucose production in rats. Second, leptin administration into the hypothalamus of high-fat-fed rats restored hypothalamic glucose sensing to lower glucose production during a pancreatic (basal insulin)-euglycemic clamp and increased whole-body glucose tolerance during an intravenous glucose tolerance test. Finally, both chemical inhibition of hypothalamic lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) (achieved via hypothalamic LDH inhibitor oxamate infusion) and molecular knockdown of LDHA (achieved via hypothalamic lentiviral LDHA shRNA injection) negated the ability of hypothalamic leptin infusion to enhance glucose sensing to lower glucose production in high fat-fed rats. In summary, our findings illustrate that leptin enhances LDHA-dependent glucose sensing in the hypothalamus to lower glucose production in high-fat-fed rodents in vivo.

Keywords: LDHA; brain; glucose; glucose metabolism; glucose production; glucose sensing; hypothalamus; leptin.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Diet, High-Fat / adverse effects*
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Enzymologic / drug effects*
  • Glucose / metabolism*
  • Glucose Intolerance / etiology
  • Glucose Intolerance / pathology
  • Glucose Intolerance / prevention & control*
  • Glucose Tolerance Test
  • Homeostasis
  • Hypothalamus / enzymology*
  • Insulin Resistance
  • L-Lactate Dehydrogenase / metabolism*
  • Leptin / pharmacology*
  • Male
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley


  • Leptin
  • L-Lactate Dehydrogenase
  • Glucose