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J Biol Chem. 2000 May 26;275(21):16275-80.

GLUT8, a novel member of the sugar transport facilitator family with glucose transport activity.

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Institute of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Medical Faculty, Technical University of Aachen, D-52057 Aachen, Germany.


GLUT8 is a novel glucose transporter-like protein that exhibits significant sequence similarity with the members of the sugar transport facilitator family (29.4% of amino acids identical with GLUT1). Human and mouse sequence (86.2% identical amino acids) comprise 12 putative membrane-spanning helices and several conserved motifs (sugar transporter signatures), which have previously been shown to be essential for transport activity, e.g. GRK in loop 2, PETPR in loop 6, QQLSGVN in helix 7, DRAGRR in loop 8, GWGPIPW in helix 10, and PETKG in the C-terminal tail. An expressed sequence tag (STS A005N15) corresponding with the 3'-untranslated region of GLUT8 has previously been mapped to human chromosome 9. COS-7 cells transfected with GLUT8 cDNA expressed a 42-kDa protein exhibiting specific, glucose-inhibitable cytochalasin B binding (K(D) = 56.6 +/- 18 nm) and reconstitutable glucose transport activity (8.1 +/- 1. 4 nmol/(mg protein x 10 s) versus 1.1 +/- 0.1 in control transfections). In human tissues, a 2.4-kilobase pair transcript was predominantly found in testis, but not in testicular carcinoma. Lower amounts of the mRNA were detected in most other tissues including skeletal muscle, heart, small intestine, and brain. GLUT8 mRNA was found in testis from adult, but not from prepubertal rats; its expression in human testis was suppressed by estrogen treatment. It is concluded that GLUT8 is a sugar transport facilitator with glucose transport activity and a hormonally regulated testicular function.

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