Both high-fat diet (HFD) alone and high-fructose plus HFD (HFr/HFD) cause diet-induced non-alcoholic fatty liver disease in murine models. However, the mechanisms underlying their impacts on inducing different levels of liver injury are yet to be elucidated. This study employed a proteomic approach to elucidate further on this issue. Adult male C57BL/6J mice were allocated to the HFD or the HFr/HFD group. After feeding for 12 weeks, all mice were euthanized and samples were collected. The proteomic profiles in liver tissues were analyzed using liquid chromatography–tandem mass spectrometry followed by canonical pathway analysis. We demonstrated that the mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) pathway was the most significantly downregulated canonical pathway in the HFr/HFD group when compared with the HFD group. Within the OXPHOS pathway, the HFr/HFD group demonstrated significant downregulation of complexes I and III and significant upregulation of complex IV when compared with the HFD group. Moreover, the HFr/HFD group had lower protein levels of NADH: ubiquinone oxidoreductase subunits S3, S6, A5, and A12 in complex I (p < 0.001, =0.03, <0.001, and <0.001, respectively), lower protein level of cytochrome C in complex III (p < 0.001), and higher protein level of cytochrome C oxidase subunit 2 in complex IV (p = 0.002), when compared with the HFD group. To summarize, we have demonstrated that the hepatic mitochondrial OXPHOS pathway is significantly downregulated in long-term HFr/HFD feeding when compared with long-term HFD feeding. These data support the concept that the hepatic mitochondrial OXPHOS pathway should be involved in mediating the effects of HFr/HFD on inducing more severe liver injury than HFD alone.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3425
Issue number21
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2022


  • high fructose
  • high-fat diet
  • liver
  • mitochondria
  • proteomic

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry,Genetics and Molecular Biology


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