The Effects of Pyruvate Dehydrogenase Kinase 4 (PDK4) Inhibition on Metabolic Flexibility during Endurance Training in Skeletal Muscles of Streptozotocin-induced Diabetic Rats

Document Type : Original Article


1 Associate Professor, Physiology Research Center, Institute of Basic and Clinical Physiology Sciences, Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman, Iran

2 Ph.D. Candidate, Physiology Research Center, Institute of Basic and Clinical Physiology Sciences, Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman, Iran

3 Associate Professor, Department of Exercise Physiology, Faculty of Physical Education and Sport Sciences, Shahid Chamran University of Ahvaz, Ahvaz, Iran

4 Assistant Professor, Physiology Research Center, Institute of Basic and Clinical Physiology Sciences, Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman, Iran

5 Assistant Professor, Cardiovascular Research Center, Institute of Basic and Clinical Physiology Sciences & Student Research Committee, Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman, Iran


Background:Metabolic flexibility is the capacity of a system to adjust fuel (primarily glucose and fatty acids) oxidation based on nutrient availability. Pyruvate Dehydrogenase Kinase 4 (PDK4) is one of the main enzymes that play a critical role in metabolic flexibility. In current study, we examined PDK4 inhibition along with exercise training (ET) on the gene expression of Estrogen related-receptor alpha (ERRα), medium-chain acyl-CoA dehydrogenase (MCAD), carnitine palmitoyl transferase-1b (CPT-1b), peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma coactivator 1-alpha (PGC-1α), PDK4 and citrate synthase (CS) in skeletal muscle.
Method:Sixty-four male Wistar rats (8 week-old) were randomly divided into 8 groups (n=8); 1- untreated control, 2- STZ-induced diabetic, 3- PDK4 inhibition, 4- endurance training (ET), 5- diabetic + PDK4 inhibition, 6- diabetic + ET, 7- PDK4 inhibition + ET, and 8- diabetic +ET + PDK4 inhibition. ERRα, MCAD, CPT-1b, PGC-1α, PDK4 and CS genes expressions were measured by Real-Time PCR and quantified by 2-ΔΔCt method.
Results:ERRα, MCAD, CPT-1b, PGC-1α, PDK4, and CS expressions were significantly higher in non-diabetic+ Endurance Training group compared to the control group. The expressions of CPT-1b, MCAD and CS genes were significantly lower in the non-diabetic+ endurance training/PDK4 inhibition compared to the non-diabetic+ endurance training group, and the expressions of ERRα, CPT-1b and MCAD were significantly lower in the diabetic + PDK4 inhibition group compared to the diabetic group.
Conclusion:In sum, PDK4 inhibition has negative effects on lipid metabolism in healthy rats, but in animals with diabetes, PDK4 inhibition can be used for improving lipid metabolism (over-expression of CS and PGC-1α).


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