Comparative impact of dietary carbohydrates on the liver transcriptome in two strains of mice

Yuling Chi, Dou Yeon Youn, Alus M. Xiaoli, Li Liu, Yunping Qiu, Irwin J. Kurland, Jacob B. Pessin, Fajun Yang, Jeffrey E. Pessin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Excessive long-term consumption of dietary carbohydrates, including glucose, sucrose, or fructose, has been shown to have significant impact on genome-wide gene expression, which likely results from changes in metabolic substrate flux. However, there has been no comprehensive study on the acute effects of individual sugars on the genome-wide gene expression that may reveal the genetic changes altering signaling pathways, subsequent metabolic processes, and ultimately physiological/pathological responses. Considering that gene expressions in response to acute carbohydrate ingestion might be different in nutrient sensitive and insensitive mammals, we conducted comparative studies of genome-wide gene expression by deep mRNA sequencing of the liver in nutrient sensitive C57BL/6J and nutrient insensitive BALB/cJ mice. Furthermore, to determine the temporal responses, we compared livers from mice in the fasted state and following ingestion of standard laboratory mouse chow supplemented with plain drinking water or water containing 20% glucose, sucrose, or fructose. Supplementation with these carbohydrates induced unique extents and temporal changes in gene expressions in a strain specific manner. Fructose and sucrose stimulated gene changes peaked at 3 h postprandial, whereas glucose effects peaked at 12 h and 6 h postprandial in C57BL/6J and BABL/cJ mice, respectively. Network analyses revealed that fructose changed genes were primarily involved in lipid metabolism and were more complex in C57BL/6J than in BALB/cJ mice. These data demonstrate that there are qualitative and antitative differences in the normal physiological responses of the liver between these two strains of mice and C57BL/6J is more sensitive to sugar intake than BALB/cJ.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)456-472
Number of pages17
JournalPhysiological genomics
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2021


  • BALB/cJ
  • C57BL/6J
  • Dietary carbohydrates
  • MRNA-seq
  • Transcriptome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Genetics


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