Indexed on: 30 Jul '14Published on: 30 Jul '14Published in: Biochimica et biophysica acta
There is currently a global epidemic of obesity as a result of recent changes in lifestyle. Excess body fat deposition is caused by an imbalance between energy intake and energy expenditure due to interactions between genetic and environmental factors. The signals and biological mechanisms that trigger fat accumulation by disrupting energy homeostasis are not well understood. There is considerable evidence now supporting a possible role of protein kinase C beta (PKCβ) in energy homeostasis. This review highlights recent findings on the role of PKCβ activation in the genesis and progression of obesity, and of PKCβ repression in mediating the beneficial effects of physical exercise. Available data support a model in which adipose PKCβ activation is among the initiating events that disrupt mitochondrial function through interaction with p66(shc) and amplify fat accumulation and adipose dysfunction, with systemic consequences. Manipulation of PKCβ levels, activity, or signaling could provide a therapeutic approach to combat obesity and associated metabolic disorders.