EventsDr. Begüm Kocatürk

Nutritional Modification of Endoplasmic Reticulum Stress and Inflammasome Activity by a Bioactive Lipokine Prevents Atherosclerosis

Atheroclerosis is the leading cause of death in the civilized world. The disease progresses as macrophages engulf lipids and accumulate in the vessel wall. The newly formed foam cells release pro-inflammatory cytokines which is crucial in disease pathogenesis. It was previously shown that the level of saturated fatty acids(SFAs) is elevated in the plasma of patients  with atherosclerosis. Interestingly, SFAs do not only trigger Endoplasmic Reticulum(ER) stress but also activate inflammasome, of which both have pro-atherogenic role. Based on the aforementioned findings, we hypothesize that in contrast to SFAs, unsaturated fatty acids, in particular Palmitoleate(PAO),  has a remedial effect on plaque formation. Our studies show that systemic PAO treatment evokes an overall lipidomic remodeling in mice that is associated with resistance to lipid-induced ER stress, production of mitocondrial reactive oxygen species and inflammasome activation in macrophages. In addition, PAO uptake decreases pro-inflammatory IL-1β levels in serum and atherosclerotic plaque, reduces ER stress in plaque resident macropages and plaque size in a mice model of atherosclerosis.  These findings demonstrate that external supplementation of a product of de novo lipogenesis such as PAO can promote metabolic resilience of organelles and limit the progression of atherosclerosis. Overall, these findings indicate that PAO supplementation could be a desirable therapeutic approach for metabolic and inflammatory diseases.

About The Speaker

Dr. Begüm Kocatürk graduated from Bilkent University Molecular Biology and Genetics department with high honor. She recieved her PhD degree from Leiden University Medical Center, The Netherlands. During her PhD study, she discovered a novel marker for breast cancer.  In addition, she  worked as a researcher at Mcgill University, Munich Technical University and Scripps Research Institute. She has publications in reputable international journals such as PNAS, Blood and Science Translational Medicine. In addition, she works as a reviewer for major journals such as Journal of Thrombosis and Hemostasis and Thrombosis Research.  She has been awarded by  KWF, FEBS and KNCV organization for her work in the field.  She is currently working with Dr. Ebru Erbay on the development of miRNA-based therapeutic approaches for the treatment of atherosclerosis.