Glucose-regulated glucagon secretion requires ...



Title Glucose-regulated glucagon secretion requires insulin receptor expression in pancreatic alpha-cells
Author(s) J. Diao, Z. Asghar, Catherine B. Chan, M. B. Wheeler
Journal The Journal of Biological Chemistry
Date 2005
Volume 280
Issue 39
Start page 33487
End page 33496
Abstract The insulin receptor (IR) and its signaling appear to be essential for insulin secretion from pancreatic beta-cells. However, much less is known about the role of the IR in alpha-cells. To assess the role of the IR in glucagon and insulin secretion, we engineered adeno-viruses for high efficiency small interference RNA (siRNA)-IR expression in isolated mouse pancreatic islets and lentiviruses for siRNA-IR expression in pancreatic alpha- and beta-cell lines (alpha-TC6 and MIN6) with specific, long term stable IR knockdown. Western blot analysis showed that these strategies resulted in 60-80% reduction of IR protein in islets and alpha- and beta-cell lines. Cell growth was reduced by 35-50% in alpha-TC and MIN6 cells stably expressing siRNA-IR, respectively. Importantly, glucagon secretion, in response to glucose (25 to 2.8 mm), was completely abolished in islets expressing siRNA-IR, whereas secretion increased 1.7-fold in islets expressing control siRNA. In contrast, there was no difference in glucose-stimulated insulin secretion when comparing siRNA-IR and siRNA control, with both groups showing a 1.7-fold increase. Islet glucagon and insulin content were also unaffected by IR knockdown. To further explore the role of the IR, siRNA-IR was stably expressed in pancreatic cell lines, which dramatically suppressed glucose-regulated glucagon secretion in alpha-TC6 cells (3.4-fold) but did not affect GSIS in MIN6 cells. Defects in siRNA-IR-expressing alpha-cells were associated with an alteration in the activity of Akt and p70S6K where insulin-induced phosphorylation of protein kinase B/AKt was greatly reduced while p70S6K activation was enhanced, suggesting that the related pathways play important roles in alpha cell function. This study provides direct evidence that appropriate expression of the IR in alpha-cells is required for glucose-dependent glucagon secretion.
DOI 10.1074/jbc.M506276200

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