IRE1α prevents hepatic steatosis by processing and promoting the degradation of select microRNAs

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Sci. Signal.  15 May 2018:
Vol. 11, Issue 530, eaao4617
DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.aao4617

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Fat, microRNAs, and liver disease

Obesity and high-fat diets are linked to fatty liver disease and repression of the cell stress protein IRE1α. By analyzing livers from mice fed a high-fat diet and from patients with hepatic steatosis, Wang et al. found that diet- or obesity-induced IRE1α functional deficiency in the liver enabled the biogenesis of select microRNAs that consequently decreased the abundance of lipid metabolism enzymes, leading to lipid accumulation in the liver. These findings reveal additional targets to explore for treating various diet-associated liver diseases.