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Neurosci Lett. 1999 Jun 11;268(1):1-4.

Insulin effects on extracellular signal regulated kinase cascade in fetal rat astrocyte cell cultures.

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William K. Warren Medical Research Institute, University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, Tulsa 74136, USA.


Insulin within the nervous system promotes cell differentiation and survival. In addition extracellular signal regulated kinase (ERK) promotes cell differentiation and survival. We studied the effects of insulin on astrocyte ERK-1 and 2, in fetal enriched astrocyte cell cultures incubated in an insulin free-defined medium (G3 medium). After 2 days in G3 medium the astrocytes were stimulated with 5 ng/ml of insulin for 2 min, and insulin effects on insulin receptor, insulin receptor substrate-1 (IRS-1) and ERK-1 and 2 were studied using Western blots. Insulin inhibited the phosphorylation of the insulin receptor and IRS-1 and decreased the activity of the ERK-1, and inhibited the activation of the ERK-2. Thus, insulin is involved in ERK regulation in fetal astrocytes.

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