Long-Term Administration of Conjugated Estrogen and Bazedoxifene Decreased Murine Fecal β-Glucuronidase Activity Without Impacting Overall Microbiome Community

Conjugated estrogens (CE) and Bazedoxifene (BZA) combination is used to alleviate menopause-associated symptoms in women. CE+BZA undergo first-pass-metabolism in the liver and deconjugation by gut microbiome via β-glucuronidase (GUS) enzyme inside the distal gut. To date, the impact of long-term exposure to CE+BZA on the gut microbiome or GUS activity has not been examined. Our study using an ovariectomized mouse model showed that CE+BZA administration did not affect the overall cecal or fecal microbiome community except that it decreased the abundance of Akkermansia, which was identified as a fecal biomarker correlated with weight gain. The fecal GUS activity was reduced significantly and was positively correlated with the abundance of Lactobacillaceae in the fecal microbiome. We further confirmed in Escherichia coli K12 and Lactobacillus gasseri ADH that Tamoxifen-, 4-hydroxy-Tamoxifen- and Estradiol-Glucuronides competed for GUS activity. Our study for the first time demonstrated that long-term estrogen supplementation directly modulated gut microbial GUS activity. Our findings implicate that long-term estrogen supplementation impacts composition of gut microbiota and microbial activity, which affects estrogen metabolism in the gut. Thus, it is possible to manipulate such activity to improve the efficacy and safety of long-term administered estrogens for postmenopausal women or breast cancer patients. PMID: 29802368

Bazedoxifene and conjugated estrogen combination maintains metabolic homeostasis and benefits liver health

The bazedoxifene and conjugated estrogens (CE+BZA) combination has been shown to prevent visceral adiposity and weight gain after ovariectomy. However, its impact on the liver transcriptomes associated with prevention of hepatosteatosis is yet to be determined. In the present study, we use liver transcriptomics and plasma metabolomics analysis to characterize the effects of various estrogens on liver. The CE+BZA combination was very effective at preventing ovariectomy-induced weight gain in mice fed a high-fat diet (HFD). In CE+BZA treated animals, liver weight and hepatic lipid deposition were significantly lower than in Vehicle (Veh) treated animals. Additionally, CE+BZA induced unique liver transcriptome and plasma metabolome profiles compared to estradiol, conjugated estrogens alone, and bazedoxifene alone. Blood plasma metabolite analysis identified several metabolites similar to and distinct from other estrogen treatments. Integrated pathway analysis showed that gene networks that were associated with inflammation, reactive oxygen species pathway and lipid metabolism and their relevant metabolites were regulated significantly by CE+BZA treatment. Thus, long-term CE+BZA treatment modulated hepatic metabolic gene networks and their associated metabolites and improves hepatic health without stimulating the uterus. PMID:29267318

Estrogens and female liver health

Due to declining estrogen levels during menopause, NAFLD prevalence is higher in postmenopausal women compared to in premenopausal women or in men. Postmenopausal women are more susceptible to weight gain, fat redistribution and dyslipidemia, all major hallmarks of metabolic syndrome associated with increased NAFLD risk. Gut microbiota plays important roles in development of gastrointestinal tract, metabolism and immunity. Host-microbe interactions allows regulation of a wide range of pathways that affect healthy and diseased physiology. Recent advances in – omics technologies, such as microbiome, transcriptome and metabolome analysis, provided evidence that estrogens and intestinal microbiota (IM) can collectively influence obesity, inflammatory disease, diabetes, and cancers. By understanding underlying mechanisms of estrogens and microbiota crosstalk, we might design dietary and pharmacological interventions to alleviate the metabolic syndrome and NAFLD. PMID:29100781

Non-Nuclear Estrogen Receptor Activation Improves Hepatic Steatosis in Female Mice.

Estrogens have the potential to afford atheroprotection, to prevent excess adiposity and its metabolic complications including insulin resistance, and to lessen hepatic steatosis. Cellular responses to estrogens occur through gene regulation by nuclear estrogen receptors (ER), and through signal initiation by plasma membrane-associated ER. Leveraging the potentially favorable cardiometabolic actions of estrogens has been challenging because their reproductive tract and cancer-promoting effects adversely impact the risk-benefit ratio of the therapy. In prior works we discovered that an estrogen dendrimer conjugate (EDC) comprised of ethinyl-estradiol (E2) molecules linked to a poly(amido)amine dendrimer selectively activates non-nuclear ER, and in mice EDC does not invoke a uterotrophic response or support ER-positive breast cancer growth. In the present investigation, we employed EDC to determine how selective non-nuclear ER activation impacts atherosclerosis, adiposity, glucose homeostasis and hepatic steatosis in female mice. In contrast to E2, EDC did not blunt atherosclerosis in hypercholesterolemic apoE-/- mice. Also in contrast to E2, EDC did not prevent the increase in adiposity caused by western diet feeding in wild-type mice, and it did not affect western diet-induced glucose intolerance. However, E2 and EDC had comparable favorable effect on diet-induced hepatic steatosis, and this was related to downregulation of fatty acid and triglyceride synthesis genes in the liver. Predictably only E2 caused a uterotrophic response. Thus, although non-nuclear ER activation does not prevent atherosclerosis or diet-induced obesity or glucose intolerance, it may provide a potential new strategy to combat hepatic steatosis without impacting the female reproductive tract or increasing cancer risk. Link

Estrogen receptor-α and aryl hydrocarbon receptor involvement in the actions of botanical estrogens in target cells.

Botanical estrogen (BE) dietary supplements are consumed by women as substitutes for loss of endogenous estrogens at menopause. To examine the roles of estrogen receptor α (ERα) and aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) and their crosstalk in the actions of BEs, we studied gene regulation and proliferation responses to four widely used BEs, genistein, daidzein, and S-equol from soy, and liquiritigen from licorice root in breast cancer and liver cells. BEs and estradiol (E2), acting through ERα, stimulated proliferation, ERα chromatin binding and target-gene expression. BEs but not E2, acting through AhR, bound to xenobiotic response element-containing chromatin sites and enhanced AhR target-gene expression (CYP1A1, CYP1B1). While E2 and TCDD acted quite selectively through their respective receptors, BEs acted via both receptors, with their AhR activity moderated by negative crosstalk through ERα. Both ERα and AhR should be considered as mediators of the biology and pharmacology of BEs. Link

Systems Biology of Nuclear Receptors in Metabolic Disease and Cancer