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Free Radic Biol Med. 2009 Aug 1;47(3):219-28. doi: 10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2009.01.028. Epub 2009 Feb 20.

Synergistic activation of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase and NAD(P)H oxidase by Src kinase elevates superoxide in type 2 diabetic, Zucker fa/fa, rat liver.

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1
Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of South Alabama, Mobile, AL 36688, USA.

Abstract

Glucose metabolism through the glycolysis and hexosamine pathway has been shown to be altered in type 2 diabetes. However, the fate of glucose through the pentose phosphate pathway (PPP) is currently unclear. In this study, we determined whether the activity of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD), the rate-limiting enzyme in the PPP, is modulated in the liver of Zucker obese fa/fa rats (9-11 weeks of age). We found that G6PD expression and activity, NADPH levels, and 6-phosphogluconate generation were significantly increased in the liver of fa/fa rats. Inhibition of PI3 kinase and Src kinases decreased (p < 0.05) G6PD activity in the fa/fa but not in the lean rat liver, suggesting that G6PD activity is regulated by PI3/Src kinase signaling pathways. G6PD-derived NADPH increased (p < 0.05) superoxide anion levels by 70-90% in fa/fa vs lean rat liver, which was inhibited by the NADPH oxidase inhibitor gp91(ds-tat) (50 microM) and G6PD inhibitors 6-aminonicotinamide (1 mM) and dehydroepiandrosterone (100 microM), therefore indicating that elevated G6PD activity may be responsible for mediating superoxide generation. Interestingly, we also found a positive correlation between liver hypertrophy/increased G6PD activity (r2 = 0.77; p = 0.0009) and liver hypertrophy/superoxide production (r2 = 0.51; p = 0.0091) in fa/fa rats. Increased G6PD and NADPH oxidase expression and activity, in young hyperglycemic and hyperinsulinemic rats before the development of diabetes, seems to be a contributing factor in the induction of oxidative stress. Because inhibition of G6PD activity decreases oxidative stress, we conclude that G6PD behaves as a pro-oxidant in the fa/fa rat liver in type 2 diabetes.

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