Glutathionyl systems and metabolic dysfunction in obesity

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Oxidative stress is associated with obesity. However, glutathione (GSH), one of the body’s most abundant antioxidants, plays dual and seemingly contradictory roles in the development of obesity and its comorbidities. Glutathione has complex metabolic and biochemical fates and is a cofactor for several enzymes that function in modifying obesity-related responses. For example, depletion of GSH increases energy metabolism and reduces adipose accretion, while elevation of GSH peroxidase activity induces insulin resistance. This review summarizes the literature linking GSH and its related enzymes, GSH peroxidase, glutaredoxins, and glutathione S-transferases, to obesity and its pertinent endpoints (e.g., energy metabolism, inflammation, and insulin resistance).

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