Mania, M., Maruccio, L., Russo, F., Abbate, F., Castaldo, L., D'Angelo, L., de Girolamo, P., Guerrera, M.C., Lucini, C., Madrigrano, M., Levanti, M., Germanà, A. (2017) Expression and distribution of leptin and its receptors in the digestive tract of DIO (diet-induced obese) zebrafish. Annals of anatomy = Anatomischer Anzeiger : official organ of the Anatomische Gesellschaft. 212:37-47.
The expression and localization of leptin (A and B) and its receptor family in control and diet-induced obese (DIO) adult male zebrafish gut, after 5-weeks overfeeding, administering Artemia nauplii, as fat-rich food, were investigated. Recently, the obese adult zebrafish was considered an experimental model with pathophysiological pathways similar to mammalian obesity. Currently, there are no reports about leptin in fish obesity, or in a state of altered energy balance. By qRT-PCR, leptin A and leptin B expression levels were significantly higher in DIO zebrafish gut than in the control group (CTRL), and the lowest levels of leptin receptor mRNA appeared in DIO zebrafish gut. The presence of leptin and its receptor proteins in the intestinal tract was detected by western blot analysis in both control and DIO zebrafish. By single immunohistochemical staining, leptin and leptin receptor immunoreactive endocrine cells were identified in the intestinal tract either in DIO or control zebrafish. Moreover, leptin immunopositive enteric nervous system elements were observed in both groups. By double immunohistochemical staining, leptin and its receptor were colocalized especially in DIO zebrafish. Thus, our study represents a starting point in the investigation of a possible involvement of leptin in control of energy homeostasis in control and DIO zebrafish.