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Mouse model of sympathetic nervous system activation in metabolic syndrome

A new mouse model could help guide development of therapies that target the sympathetic nervous system in metabolic syndrome. In mice, knockout of the vav 3 oncogene (Vav3) guanine nucleotide exchange factor-encoding gene led to liver steatosis and diabetes under a normal diet but protected from obesity and diabetes under a high-fat diet. Vav3 knockout mice showed chronic activation of the noradrenergic system, and pharmacological inhibition of adrenergic receptors prevented the onset of metabolic symptoms. Next steps could include using the mouse model to study the interdependence between diet and chronic activation of the sympathetic nervous system.

SciBX 6(34); doi:10.1038/scibx.2013.940
Published online Sept. 5, 2013

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Menacho-Márquez, M. et al. Cell Metab.; published online Aug. 6, 2013;
Contact: Xosé R. Bustelo, University of Salamanca, Salamanca, Spain