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Mol Cell Endocrinol. 2003 Nov 14;209(1-2):17-31.

Decreasing IRS-2 expression in pancreatic beta-cells (INS-1) promotes apoptosis, which can be compensated for by introduction of IRS-4 expression.

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Pacific Northwest Research Institute, 720 Broadway, Seattle, WA 98122, USA.


IRS-2 plays a pivotal role in the control of pancreatic beta-cell growth. Here, the effect of altering IRS-2 expression levels in the pancreatic beta-cell line, INS-1, was examined. Adenoviral-mediated increased in IRS-2 protein levels protected against fatty acid (FFA)-induced apoptosis, associated with increased activation of PKB and decreased levels of activated caspase-9. Conversely, decreasing endogenous IRS-2 in INS-1 cells, using adenoviral-mediated expression of IRS-2 antisense, caused a three-fold increase in baseline apoptosis that was further enhanced in the presence of FFA. This was associated with decreased activation of PKB and increased caspase-9 activation. Although IRS-4 is not normally expressed in beta-cells, it was found that adenoviral-mediated introduction of IRS-4 into INS-1 cells enhanced glucose/IGF-1 induced mitogenesis, and protected against FFA-induced apoptosis, similarly to IRS-2. Moreover, expression of IRS-4 in INS-1 cells depleted of IRS-2 levels by IRS-2 antisense, was able to compensate for the lack of IRS-2 and reduce apoptosis in these cells back to normal. Thus, in beta-cells IRS-4 and -2 have similar biological functions. Also, this study further emphasizes the importance of IRS-2 signaling in control of beta-cell survival.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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