Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol. 2011 Jan;300(1):R92-100. doi: 10.1152/ajpregu.00169.2010. Epub 2010 Nov 10.

UPR induces transient burst of apoptosis in islets of early lactating rats through reduced AKT phosphorylation via ATF4/CHOP stimulation of TRB3 expression.

Author information

Department of Physiology and Biophysics, Institute of Biomedical Sciences, University of Sao Paulo, Brazil.


Endocrine pancreas from pregnant rats undergoes several adaptations that comprise increase in β-cell number, mass and insulin secretion, and reduction of apoptosis. Lactogens are the main hormones that account for these changes. Maternal pancreas, however, returns to a nonpregnant state just after the delivery. The precise mechanism by which this reversal occurs is not settled but, in spite of high lactogen levels, a transient increase in apoptosis was already reported as early as the 3rd day of lactation (L3). Our results revealed that maternal islets displayed a transient increase in DNA fragmentation at L3, in parallel with decreased RAC-alpha serine/threonine-protein kinase (AKT) phosphorylation (pAKT), a known prosurvival kinase. Wortmannin completely abolished the prosurvival action of prolactin (PRL) in cultured islets. Decreased pAKT in L3-islets correlated with increased Tribble 3 (TRB3) expression, a pseudokinase inhibitor of AKT. PERK and eIF2α phosphorylation transiently increased in islets from rats at the first day after delivery, followed by an increase in immunoglobulin heavy chain-binding protein (BiP), activating transcription factor 4 (ATF4), and C/EBP homologous protein (CHOP) in islets from L3 rats. Chromatin immunoprecipitation (ChIP) and Re-ChIP experiments further confirmed increased binding of the heterodimer ATF4/CHOP to the TRB3 promoter in L3 islets. Treatment with PBA, a chemical chaperone that inhibits UPR, restored pAKT levels and inhibited the increase in apoptosis found in L3. Moreover, PBA reduced CHOP and TRB3 levels in β-cell from L3 rats. Altogether, our study collects compelling evidence that UPR underlies the physiological and transient increase in β-cell apoptosis after delivery. The UPR is likely to counteract prosurvival actions of PRL by reducing pAKT through ATF4/CHOP-induced TRB3 expression.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Atypon
    Loading ...
    Support Center