3 years ago

Development and characterization of an experimental model of diet-induced metabolic syndrome in rabbit

Oscar Julián Arias-Mutis, Jose Manuel Morales, Amparo Ruiz-Saurí, Vannina G. Marrachelli, Luis Such, Antonio Alberola, Daniel Monleon, Francisco J. Chorro, Manuel Zarzoso, Luis Such-Miquel

by Oscar Julián Arias-Mutis, Vannina G. Marrachelli, Amparo Ruiz-Saurí, Antonio Alberola, Jose Manuel Morales, Luis Such-Miquel, Daniel Monleon, Francisco J. Chorro, Luis Such, Manuel Zarzoso

Metabolic syndrome (MetS) has become one of the main concerns for public health because of its link to cardiovascular disease. Murine models have been used to study the effect of MetS on the cardiovascular system, but they have limitations for studying cardiac electrophysiology. In contrast, the rabbit cardiac electrophysiology is similar to human, but a detailed characterization of the different components of MetS in this animal is still needed. Our objective was to develop and characterize a diet-induced experimental model of MetS that allows the study of cardiovascular remodeling and arrhythmogenesis. Male NZW rabbits were assigned to control (n = 15) or MetS group (n = 16), fed during 28 weeks with high-fat, high-sucrose diet. We measured weight, morphological characteristics, blood pressure, glycaemia, standard plasma biochemistry and the metabolomic profile at weeks 14 and 28. Liver histological changes were evaluated using hematoxylin-eosin staining. A mixed model ANOVA or unpaired t-test were used for statistical analysis (P<0.05). Weight, abdominal contour, body mass index, systolic, diastolic and mean arterial pressure increased in the MetS group at weeks 14 and 28. Glucose, triglycerides, LDL, GOT-AST, GOT/GPT, bilirubin and bile acid increased, whereas HDL decreased in the MetS group at weeks 14 and 28. We found a 40% increase in hepatocyte area and lipid vacuoles infiltration in the liver from MetS rabbits. Metabolomic analysis revealed differences in metabolites related to fatty acids, energetic metabolism and microbiota, compounds linked with cardiovascular disease. Administration of high-fat and high-sucrose diet during 28 weeks induced obesity, glucose intolerance, hypertension, non-alcoholic hepatic steatosis and metabolic alterations, thus reproducing the main clinical manifestations of the metabolic syndrome in humans. This experimental model should provide a valuable tool for studies into the mechanisms of cardiovascular problems related to MetS, with special relevance in the study of cardiovascular remodeling, arrhythmias and SCD.

Publisher URL: http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article

DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0178315

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