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DiNuzzo M.,Magnetic Resonance for Brain Investigation Laboratory | DiNuzzo M.,University of Rome La Sapienza
Journal of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism | Year: 2013

A biophysical model of the glycogen molecule is developed, which takes into account the points of attack of synthase and phosphorylase at the level of the individual glucose chain. Under the sole assumption of steric effects governing enzyme accessibility to glucosyl residues, the model reproduces the known equilibrium structure of cellular glycogen at steady state. In particular, experimental data are reproduced assuming that synthase (1) operates preferentially on inner chains of the molecule and (2) exhibits a faster mobility than phosphorylase in translocating from an attacked chain to another. The model is then used to examine the turnover of outer versus inner tiers during the labeling process of isotopic enrichment (IE) experiments. Simulated data are fitted to in vivo 13 C nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy measurements obtained in the human brain under resting conditions. Within this experimental set-up, analysis of simulated label incorporation and retention shows that 7% to 35% of labeled glucose is lost from the rapidly turning-over surface of the glycogen molecule when stimulation onset is delayed by 7 to 11.5 hours after the end of 1-13 Cglucose infusion as done in actual procedures. The substantial label washout before stimulation suggests that much of the subsequent activation-induced glycogenolysis could remain undetected. Overall, these results show that the molecular structure significantly affects the patterns of synthesis and degradation of glycogen, which is relevant for appropriate design of labeling experiments aiming at investigating the functional roles of this glucose reserve. © 2013 ISCBFM All rights reserved.


Dinuzzo M.,Centro Of Studi E Ricerche Enrico Fermi | Giove F.,Centro Of Studi E Ricerche Enrico Fermi | Giove F.,University of Rome La Sapienza | Maraviglia B.,Centro Of Studi E Ricerche Enrico Fermi | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Neurochemistry | Year: 2013

The non-metabolizable fluorescent glucose analogue 6-(N-(7-nitrobenz-2-oxa- 1,3-diazol-4-yl)amino)-2-deoxyglucose (6-NBDG) is increasingly used to study cellular transport of glucose. Intracellular accumulation of exogenously applied 6-NBDG is assumed to reflect concurrent gradient-driven glucose uptake by glucose transporters (GLUTs). Here, theoretical considerations are provided that put this assumption into question. In particular, depending on the microscopic parameters of the carrier proteins, theory proves that changes in glucose transport can be accompanied by opposite changes in flow of 6-NBDG. Simulations were carried out applying the symmetric four-state carrier model on the GLUT1 isoform, which is the only isoform whose kinetic parameters are presently available. Results show that cellular 6-NBDG uptake decreases with increasing rate of glucose utilization under core-model conditions, supported by literature, namely where the transporter is assumed to work in regime of slow reorientation of the free-carrier compared with the ligand-carrier complex. To observe an increase of 6-NBDG uptake with increasing rate of glucose utilization, and thus interpret 6-NBDG increase as surrogate of glucose uptake, the transporter must be assumed to operate in regime of slow ligand-carrier binding, a condition that is currently not supported by literature. Our findings suggest that the interpretation of data obtained with NBDG derivatives is presently ambiguous and should be cautious because the underlying transport kinetics are not adequately established. In this study, we used the four-state carrier model for brain GLUT1 to examine whether cellular glucose metabolism can be inferred from the accumulation of the fluorescent glucose analogue 6-NBDG, which is increasingly employed for indirect determination of glucose transport and utilization in neurons and astrocytes. However, our findings show that the relation between 6-NBDG uptake and glucose transport and utilization configures antiport not symport of the two substrates. © 2013 International Society for Neurochemistry.


DiNuzzo M.,Museo Storico Della Fisica E Centro Of Studi E Ricerche Enrico Fermi | DiNuzzo M.,Magnetic Resonance for Brain Investigation Laboratory | Giove F.,Museo Storico Della Fisica E Centro Of Studi E Ricerche Enrico Fermi | Giove F.,University of Rome La Sapienza | And 2 more authors.
Neurochemical Research | Year: 2015

Brainstem nuclei are the principal sites of monoamine (MA) innervation to major forebrain structures. In the cortical grey matter, increased secretion of MA neuromodulators occurs in response to a wealth of environmental and homeostatic challenges, whose onset is associated with rapid, preparatory changes in neural activity as well as with increases in energy metabolism. Blood-borne glucose is the main substrate for energy production in the brain. Once entered the tissue, interstitial glucose is equally accessible to neurons and astrocytes, the two cell types accounting for most of cellular volume and energy metabolism in neocortex and hippocampus. Astrocytes also store substantial amounts of glycogen, but non-stimulated glycogen turnover is very small. The rate of cellular glucose utilization in the brain is largely determined by hexokinase, which under basal conditions is more than 90 % inhibited by its product glucose-6-phosphate (Glc-6-P). During rapid increases in energy demand, glycogen is a primary candidate in modulating the intracellular level of Glc-6-P, which can occur only in astrocytes. Glycogenolysis can produce Glc-6-P at a rate higher than uptake and phosphorylation of glucose. MA neurotransmitter are released extrasinaptically by brainstem neurons projecting to neocortex and hippocampus, thus activating MA receptors located on both neuronal and astrocytic plasma membrane. Importantly, MAs are glycogenolytic agents and thus they are exquisitely suitable for regulation of astrocytic Glc-6-P concentration, upstream substrate flow through hexokinase and hence cellular glucose uptake. Conforming to such mechanism, Gerald A. Dienel and Nancy F. Cruz recently suggested that activation of noradrenergic locus coeruleus might reversibly block astrocytic glucose uptake by stimulating glycogenolysis in these cells, thereby anticipating the rise in glucose need by active neurons. In this paper, we further develop the idea that the whole monoaminergic system modulates both function and metabolism of forebrain regions in a manner mediated by glycogen mobilization in astrocytes. © 2015, Springer Science+Business Media New York.


DiNuzzo M.,Museo Storico Della Fisica E Centro Of Studi E Ricerche Enrico Fermi | DiNuzzo M.,Magnetic Resonance for Brain Investigation Laboratory | Mangia S.,University of Minnesota | Maraviglia B.,University of Rome La Sapienza | And 2 more authors.
Neurochemical Research | Year: 2012

Energy homeostasis in the brain is maintained by oxidative metabolism of glucose, primarily to fulfil the energy demand associated with ionic movements in neurons and astrocytes. In this contribution we review the experimental evidence that grounds a specific role of glycogen metabolism in supporting the functional energetic needs of astrocytes during the removal of extracellular potassium. Based on theoretical considerations, we further discuss the hypothesis that the mobilization of glycogen in astrocytes serves the purpose to enhance the availability of glucose for neuronal glycolytic and oxidative metabolism at the onset of stimulation. Finally, we provide an evolutionary perspective for explaining the selection of glycogen as carbohydrate reserve in the energy-sensing machinery of cell metabolism. © Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012.


DiNuzzo M.,Museo Storico Della Fisica E Centro Of Studi E Ricerche Enrico Fermi | DiNuzzo M.,Magnetic Resonance for Brain Investigation Laboratory | Mangia S.,University of Minnesota | Maraviglia B.,University of Rome La Sapienza | And 2 more authors.
Metabolic Brain Disease | Year: 2015

Epilepsy is a family of brain disorders with a largely unknown etiology and high percentage of pharmacoresistance. The clinical manifestations of epilepsy are seizures, which originate from aberrant neuronal synchronization and hyperexcitability. Reactive astrocytosis, a hallmark of the epileptic tissue, develops into loss-of-function of glutamine synthetase, impairment of glutamate-glutamine cycle and increase in extracellular and astrocytic glutamate concentration. Here, we argue that chronically elevated intracellular glutamate level in astrocytes is instrumental to alterations in the metabolism of glycogen and leads to the synthesis of polyglucosans. Unaccessibility of glycogen-degrading enzymes to these insoluble molecules compromises the glycogenolysis-dependent reuptake of extracellular K+ by astrocytes, thereby leading to increased extracellular K+ and associated membrane depolarization. Based on current knowledge, we propose that the deterioration in structural homogeneity of glycogen particles is relevant to disruption of brain K+ homeostasis and increased susceptibility to seizures in epilepsy. © 2014, Springer Science+Business Media New York.

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