The elongase of long chain fatty acids family 6 (ELOVL6) is a rate-limiting enzyme for the elongation of saturated and monounsaturated long chain fatty acids. ELOVL6 is abundantly expressed in lipogenic tissues such as liver, and its mRNA expression is up-regulated in obese model animals. ELOVL6 deficient mice are protected from high-fat-diet-induced insulin resistance, suggesting that ELOVL6 might be a new therapeutic target for diabetes. We previously identified an indoledione compound, Compound A, as the first inhibitor for mammalian ELOVL6. In this study, we discovered a novel compound, Compound B, and characterized its biochemical and pharmacological properties. Compound B has a more appropriate profile for use as a pharmacological tool compared to Compound A. Chronic treatment with Compound B in model animals, diet-induced obesity (DIO) and KKAy mice, showed significant reduction in hepatic fatty acid composition, suggesting that it effectively inhibits ELOVL6 activity in the liver. However, no improvement in insulin resistance by ELOVL6 inhibition was found in these model animals. Further studies need to address the impact of ELOVL6 inhibition on pharmacological abnormalities in several model animals. This is the first report on pharmacology data from chronic studies using a selective ELOVL6 inhibitor. Compound B appears to be a useful tool to further understand the physiological roles of ELOVL6 and to evaluate the therapeutic potential of ELOVL6 inhibitors.
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