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Regulation of alternative splicing in obesity-induced hypertension

Authors Dlamini Z, Hull R, Makhafola TJ, Mbele M

Received 25 September 2018

Accepted for publication 11 February 2019

Published 28 August 2019 Volume 2019:12 Pages 1597—1615

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/DMSO.S188680

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Amy Norman

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Juei-Tang Cheng


Zodwa Dlamini, Rodney Hull, Tshepiso J Makhafola, Mzwandile Mbele

South African Medical Research Council/University of Pretoria Precision Prevention & Novel Drug Targets for HIV-Associated Cancers (PPNDTHAC) Extramural Unit, Pan African Cancer Research Institute (PACRI), Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Pretoria, Hatfield 0028, South Africa

Correspondence: Zodwa Dlamini
South African Medical Research Council/University of Pretoria Precision Prevention & Novel Drug Targets for HIV-Associated Cancers (PPNDTHAC) Extramural Unit, Pan African Cancer Research Institute (PACRI), Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Pretoria, South Africa
Tel +27 3 18 199 334/5
Email Zodwa.dlamini@up.ac.za

Abstract: Obesity is the result of genetics which predisposes an individual to obesity and environmental factors, resulting in excessive weight gain. A well-established linear relationship exists between hypertension and obesity. The combined burden of hypertension and obesity poses significant health and economic challenges. Many environmental factors and genetic traits interact to contribute to obesity-linked hypertension. These include excess sodium re-absorption or secretion by the kidneys, a hypertensive shift of renal-pressure and activation of the sympathetic nervous system. Most individuals suffering from hypertension need drugs in order to treat their raised blood pressure, and while a number of antihypertensive therapeutic agents are currently available, 50% of cases remain uncontrolled. In order to develop new and effective therapeutic agents combating obesity-induced hypertension, a thorough understanding of the molecular events leading to adipogenesis is critical. With the advent of whole genome and exome sequencing techniques, new genes and variants which can be used as markers for obesity and hypertension are being identified. This review examines the role played by alternative splicing (AS) as a contributing factor to the metabolic regulation of obesity-induced hypertension. Splicing mutations constitute at least 14% of the disease-causing mutations, thus implicating polymorphisms that effect splicing as indicators of disease susceptibility. The unique transcripts resulting from the alternate splicing of mRNA encoding proteins that play a key role in contributing to obesity would be vital to gain a proper understanding of the genetic causes of obesity. A greater knowledge of the genetic basis for obesity-linked hypertension will assist in the development of appropriate diagnostic tests as well as the identification of new personalized therapeutic targets against obesity-induced hypertension.

Keywords: obesity, hypertension, weight loss, angiogenesis, alternative splicing, gene regulation

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