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New study reveals key factors in NAFLD progression


A groundbreaking study led by researchers in the Department of Biological Sciences at UNIST has identified a key factor contributing to the progression of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), a disease commonly associated with obesity. The study, published in the journal Experimental and Molecular Medicine, shows that a protein called Thrap3 interacts with the thyroid hormone receptor and significantly worsens NAFLD by inhibiting the activity of adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase (AMPK) – a key regulator of fat metabolism – in the liver. worsens NAFLD.

Significance and Mechanisms of Thrap3 in NAFLD

NAFLD encompasses a range of metabolic disorders, including steatohepatitis and cirrhosis, caused by excessive accumulation of fat in the liver. Despite the high prevalence of NAFLD, effective treatments remain elusive. However, this groundbreaking study provides new insights into potential treatments.

New study reveals key factors in NAFLD progression

Through animal experiments in rats, the team demonstrated that Thrap3 directly binds to AMPK in the liver. This interaction prevented the transfer of AMPK from the nucleus to the cytoplasm and impaired autophagy, a process necessary for breaking down triglycerides and lowering cholesterol levels. Essentially, inhibiting Thrap3 expression provides a promising avenue for effective treatment of NAFLD.

Research Impact and Future Outlook

“We face great challenges in developing therapeutic strategies for NAFLD. However, our discovery of the Thrap3 gene provides us with a potential target for the treatment of this disease,” commented Prof. Jang Hyun Choi, corresponding author of the paper. The study

The researchers also demonstrated that inhibiting Thrap3 expression was effective in ameliorating NAFLD, an inflammatory disease originating from fatty liver.

NAFLD is a disease that affects millions of people worldwide, and this groundbreaking research provides a promising new direction for developing effective treatments for NAFLD. By targeting Thrap3, researchers hope to develop therapies that can prevent and reverse the progression of this debilitating disease.

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