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3, 5-Diiodothyronine: Biological Actions and Therapeutic Perspectives

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The purpose of this review is to summarize the current state of knowledge concerning the biological activities of 3, 5-diiodothyronine (T 2) and its potential use as a pharmacological agent. Until recent years, T2 was considered an inactive metabolite of thyroid hormones thyroxine (T4) and triiodo-L-thyronine (T3). Several observations, however, led to a reconsideration of this idea. Early studies dealing with the biological activities of this iodothyronine revealed its ability to stimulate cellular/mitochondrial respiration, essentially by a nuclear-independent pathway. Mitochondria and the energytransduction apparatus seem to be major targets of T2, although outside the mitochondria T2 also has effects on carriers, ion-exchangers and enzymes. Recent studies suggest that T 2 may also affect the transcription of some genes, but again the underlying mechanisms seem to differ from those actuated by T3. The accumulated evidence permits the conclusion that the actions of T2 do not simply mimic those of T3 but instead are specific actions exerted through mechanisms that are independent of those actuated by T3 and do not involve thyroid hormone receptors. In addition, very recent evidence leads us to suggest that T2 may be a potentially useful agent for the treatment of diet-dependent overweight (and the consequent hypertriglyceridemia and high cholesterol level) without inducing thyrotoxicosis.

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Keywords: 3, 5-Diiodothyronine; cytochrome c oxidase; mitochondria; obesity; resting metabolic rate; thyroid hormone

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Dipartimento di Scienze Biologiche ed Ambientali, Via Port'Arsa 11, 82100 Benevento, Italy.

Publication date: June 1, 2006

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  • Immunology, Endocrine & Metabolic Agents in Medicinal Chemistry aims to cover all the latest and outstanding developments in the medicinal chemistry and rational drug design for the discovery of new Immunology, Endocrine & Metabolic Agents. Each issue contains a series of timely in-depth reviews written by leaders in the field covering a range of current topics in Immunology, Endocrine & Metabolic medicinal chemistry.

    Immunology, Endocrine & Metabolic Agents in Medicinal Chemistry is an essential journal for every medicinal chemist who wishes to be kept informed and up-to-date with the latest and most important developments in Immunology, Endocrine & Metabolic drug discovery.
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