Send to

Choose Destination
PLoS One. 2013;8(1):e54250. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0054250. Epub 2013 Jan 17.

Serotonin receptor 2C and insulin secretion.

Author information

State Key Laboratory of Reproductive Medicine and Key Laboratory of Human Functional Genomics of Jiangsu Province, Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing, Jiangsu, China.


Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) describes a group of metabolic disorders characterized by defects in insulin secretion and insulin sensitivity. Insulin secretion from pancreatic β-cells is an important factor in the etiology of T2DM, though the complex regulation and mechanisms of insulin secretion from β-cells remains to be fully elucidated. High plasma levels of serotonin (5-hydroxytryptamine; 5-HT) have been reported in T2DM patients, though the potential effect on insulin secretion is unclear. However, it is known that the 5-HT receptor 2C (5-HT(2C)R) agonist, mCPP, decreases plasma insulin concentration in mice. As such, we aimed to investigate the expression of the 5-HT(2C)R in pancreatic islets of diabetic mice and the role of 5-HT(2C)R signaling in insulin secretion from pancreatic β-cells. We found that 5-HT(2C)R expression was significantly increased in pancreatic islets of db/db mice. Furthermore, treatment with a 5-HT(2C)R antagonist (SB242084) increased insulin secretion from pancreatic islets isolated from db/db mice in a dose-dependent manner, but had no effect in islets from control mice. The effect of a 5-HT(2C)R agonist (mCPP) and antagonist (SB242084) were further studied in isolated pancreatic islets from mice and Min-6 cells. We found that mCPP significantly inhibited insulin secretion in Min-6 cells and isolated islets in a dose-dependent manner, which could be reversed by SB242084 or RNA interference against 5-HT(2C)R. We also treated Min-6 cells with palmitic acid for 24 h, and found that the expression of 5-HT(2C)R increased in a dose-dependent manner; furthermore, the inhibition of insulin secretion in Min-6 cells induced by palmitic acid could be reversed by SB242084 or RNA interference against 5-HT(2C)R. Taken together, our data suggests that increased expression of 5-HT(2C)R in pancreatic β-cells might inhibit insulin secretion. This unique observation increases our understanding of T2DM and suggests new avenues for potential treatment.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Public Library of Science Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center