Targeting of the circadian clock via CK1δ/ϵ to improve glucose homeostasis in obesity

Peter Cunningham, Siobhan Ahern, Laura Smith, Carla S. Da Silva Santos, Travis T. Wager, David Bechtold

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Growing evidence indicates that disruption of our internal timing system contributes to the incidence and severity of metabolic diseases, including obesity and type 2 diabetes. This is perhaps not surprising since components of the circadian clockwork are tightly coupled to metabolic processes across the body. In the current study, we assessed the impact of obesity on the circadian system in mice at a behavioural and molecular level, and determined whether pharmacological targeting of casein kinase δ and ϵ (CKδ/ϵ), key regulators of the circadian clock, can confer metabolic benefit. We demonstrate that although behavioural rhythmicity was maintained in diet-induced obesity (DIO), gene expression profiling revealed tissue-specific alteration to the phase and amplitude of the molecular clockwork. Clock function was most significantly attenuated in visceral white adipose tissue (WAT) of DIO mice, and was coincident with elevated tissue inflammation, and dysregulation of clock-coupled metabolic regulators PPARα/γ. Further, we show that daily administration of a CKδ/ϵ inhibitor (PF-5006739) improved glucose tolerance in both DIO and genetic (ob/ob) models of obesity. These data further implicate circadian clock disruption in obesity and associated metabolic disturbance, and suggest that targeting of the clock represents a therapeutic avenue for the treatment of metabolic disorders.

Original languageEnglish
Article number29983
JournalScientific Reports
Early online date21 Jul 2016
Publication statusPublished - 21 Jul 2016


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