Elevated hypothalamic beacon gene expression in Psammomys obesus prone to develop obesity and type 2 diabetes

K. Walder, E. Ziv, R. Kalman, K. Whitecross, E. Shafrir, P. Zimmet, G. R. Collier

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5 Citations (Scopus)


OBJECTIVE: To investigate hypothalamic beacon gene expression at various developmental stages in genetically selected diabetes-resistant and diabetes-prone Psammomys obesus. In addition, effects of dietary energy composition on beacon gene expression were investigated in diabetes-prone P. obesus. METHODS: Hypothalamic beacon gene expression was measured using Taqman™ fluorogenic PCR in 4-, 8- and 16-week-old animals from each genetically selected line. RESULTS: Expression of beacon was elevated in the diabetes-prone compared with diabetes-resistant P. obesus at 4 weeks of age despite no difference in body weight between the groups. At 8 weeks of age, hypothalamic beacon gene expression was elevated in diabetes-prone animals fed a high-energy diet, and was correlated with serum insulin concentration. CONCLUSION: P. obesus with a genetic predisposition for the development of obesity and type 2 diabetes have elevated hypothalamic beacon gene expression at an early age. Overexpression of beacon may contribute to the development of obesity and insulin resistance in these animals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)605-609
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Obesity
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Beacon gene
  • Gene expression
  • Hypothalamus
  • Obesity
  • Psammomys obesus

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