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PPAR Research
Volume 2016 (2016), Article ID 6218637, 10 pages
Research Article

Timcodar (VX-853) Is a Non-FKBP12 Binding Macrolide Derivative That Inhibits PPARγ and Suppresses Adipogenesis

1Center for Hypertension and Personalized Medicine, Department of Physiology & Pharmacology, University of Toledo College of Medicine, Toledo, OH 43614, USA
2Center for Drug Design and Development, Department of Medicinal & Biological Chemistry, University of Toledo College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Toledo, OH 43606, USA
3Center for Diabetes and Endocrine Research, Department of Physiology & Pharmacology, University of Toledo College of Medicine, Toledo, OH 43614, USA

Received 8 January 2016; Accepted 27 March 2016

Academic Editor: Xu Shen

Copyright © 2016 Terry D. Hinds Jr. et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Nutrient overload and genetic factors have led to a worldwide epidemic of obesity that is the underlying cause of diabetes, atherosclerosis, and cardiovascular disease. In this study, we used macrolide drugs such as FK506, rapamycin, and macrolide derived, timcodar (VX-853), to determine their effects on lipid accumulation during adipogenesis. Rapamycin and FK506 bind to FK506-binding proteins (FKBPs), such as FKBP12, which causes suppression of the immune system and inhibition of mTOR. Rapamycin has been previously reported to inhibit the adipogenic process and lipid accumulation. However, rapamycin treatment in rodents caused immune suppression and glucose resistance, even though the mice lost weight. Here we show that timcodar (1 μM), a non-FKBP12-binding drug, significantly () inhibited lipid accumulation during adipogenesis. A comparison of the same concentration of timcodar (1 μM) and rapamycin (1 μM) showed that both are inhibitors of lipid accumulation during adipogenesis. Importantly, timcodar potently () suppressed transcriptional regulators of adipogenesis, PPARγ and C/EBPα, resulting in the inhibition of genes involved in lipid accumulation. These studies set the stage for timcodar as a possible antiobesity therapy, which is rapidly emerging as a pandemic.