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J Biol Chem. 2000 Mar 10;275(10):7144-51.

A role for phospholipase D in GLUT4 glucose transporter translocation.

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Program in Molecular Medicine and Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, Massachusetts 01655, USA.


Based on recent studies showing that phospholipase D (PLD)1 is associated with intracellular membranes and promotes membrane budding from the trans-Golgi, we tested its possible role in the membrane trafficking of GLUT4 glucose transporters. Using immunofluorescence confocal microscopy, expressed Myc epitope-tagged PLD1 was found to associate with intracellular vesicular structures by a mechanism that requires its N-terminal pleckstrin homology domain. Partial co-localization with expressed GLUT4 fused to green fluorescent protein in both 3T3-L1 adipocytes and Chinese hamster ovary cells was evident. Furthermore, microinjection of purified PLD into cultured adipocytes markedly potentiated the effect of a submaximal concentration of insulin to stimulate GLUT4 translocation to cell surface membranes. Insulin stimulated PLD activity in cells expressing high levels of insulin receptors but no such insulin effect was detected in 3T3-L1 adipocytes. Taken together, these results are consistent with the hypothesis that PLD1 associated with GLUT4-containing membranes acts in a constitutive manner to promote the mechanism of GLUT4 translocation by insulin.

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