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J Biol Chem. 2001 Dec 14;276(50):46912-6. Epub 2001 Oct 11.

5'-AMP-activated protein kinase phosphorylates IRS-1 on Ser-789 in mouse C2C12 myotubes in response to 5-aminoimidazole-4-carboxamide riboside.

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  • 1Diabetes Biology, Novo Nordisk A/S, Novo Alle, 2880 Bagsvaerd, Denmark.


Exercise is known to increase insulin sensitivity and is an effective form of treatment for the hyperglycemia observed in type 2 diabetes. Activation of 5'-AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) by 5-aminoimidazole-4-carboxamide riboside (AICAR), exercise, or electrically stimulated contraction leads to increased glucose transport in skeletal muscle. Here we report the first evidence of a direct interaction between AMPK and the most upstream component of the insulin-signaling cascade, insulin receptor substrate-1 (IRS-1). We find that AMPK rapidly phosphorylates IRS-1 on Ser-789 in cell-free assays as well as in mouse C2C12 myotubes incubated with AICAR. In the C2C12 myotubes activation of AMPK by AICAR matched the phosphorylation of IRS-1 on Ser-789. This phosphorylation correlates with a 65% increase in insulin-stimulated IRS-1-associated phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase activity in C2C12 myotubes preincubated with AICAR. The binding of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase to IRS-1 was not affected by AICAR. These results demonstrate the existence of an interaction between AMPK and early insulin signaling that could be of importance to our understanding of the potentiating effects of exercise on insulin signaling.

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