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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2005 Oct 21;336(2):430-7.

Natural anti-diabetic compound 1,2,3,4,6-penta-O-galloyl-D-glucopyranose binds to insulin receptor and activates insulin-mediated glucose transport signaling pathway.

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Edison Biotechnology Institute, Ohio University, Athens, OH 45701, USA.


Insulin mimetics from natural sources are potential therapeutics that can act alone or supplement insulin and other anti-diabetic drugs in the prevention and treatment of diabetes. We recently reported the insulin-like glucose transport stimulatory activity of tannic acid (TA) in 3T3-L1 adipocytes. In this study, we find that chemically synthesized 1,2,3,4,6-penta-O-galloyl-beta-D-glucopyranose (beta-PGG), one of the components of TA, as well as its natural anomer alpha-PGG possess activity. Mechanistic studies in adipocytes with alpha-PGG, the more potent of the two anomers, reveal that inhibitors that block the insulin-mediated glucose transport, including one that inhibits the insulin receptor (IR), also completely abolish the glucose transport activated by alpha-PGG. In addition, alpha-PGG induces phosphorylation of the IR and Akt, activates PI 3-kinase, and stimulates membrane translocation of GLUT 4. Receptor binding studies indicate that alpha-PGG binds to the IR and affects the binding between insulin and IR by reducing the maximum binding of insulin to IR without significantly altering the binding affinity of insulin to IR. Western blotting analysis of the products of a cross-linking reaction suggests that alpha-PGG may bind to IR at a site located on the alpha-subunit of the receptor. Animal studies demonstrate that PGG reduces blood glucose levels and improves glucose tolerance in diabetic and obese animals. Our results suggest that PGG may serve as a model for the development of new types of anti-diabetic and anti-metabolic syndrome therapeutics.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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