Carbonyl reductase 1 catalyzes 20β-reduction of glucocorticoids, modulating receptor activation and metabolic complications of obesity

Ruth A. Morgan, Katharina R Beck, Mark Nixon, Natalie Z. M. Homer, Andrew A. Crawford, Diana Melchers, René Houtman, Onno C. Meijer, Andreas Stomby, Anna J. Anderson, Rita Upreti, Roland H. Stimson, Tommy Olsson, Tom Michoel, Ariella Cohain, Arno Ruusalepp, Eric E Schadt, Johan L M Björkegren, Ruth Andrew, Christopher J. KenyonPatrick W. F. Hadoke, Alex Odermatt, John A. Keen, Brian R. Walker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Carbonyl Reductase 1 (CBR1) is a ubiquitously expressed cytosolic enzyme important in exogenous drug metabolism but the physiological function of which is unknown. Here, we describe a role for CBR1 in metabolism of glucocorticoids. CBR1 catalyzes the NADPH- dependent production of 20β-dihydrocortisol (20β-DHF) from cortisol. CBR1 provides the major route of cortisol metabolism in horses and is up-regulated in adipose tissue in obesity in horses, humans and mice. We demonstrate that 20β-DHF is a weak endogenous agonist of the human glucocorticoid receptor (GR). Pharmacological inhibition of CBR1 in diet-induced obesity in mice results in more marked glucose intolerance with evidence for enhanced hepatic GR signaling. These findings suggest that CBR1 generating 20β-dihydrocortisol is a novel pathway modulating GR activation and providing enzymatic protection against excessive GR activation in obesity.

Original languageEnglish
Article number10633
JournalScientific Reports
Volume7
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 6 Sep 2017

Keywords

  • Journal Article

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