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Am J Physiol. 1995 May;268(5 Pt 1):E956-64.

Transgenic GLUT-4 overexpression in fat enhances glucose metabolism: preferential effect on fatty acid synthesis.

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Harvard Thorndike Research Laboratory, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.


GLUT-4 expression varies widely among normal humans and those with obesity and diabetes. Using the alpha P2 promoter/enhancer ligated to the human GLUT-4 gene, we created transgenic mice to study the impact of alterations in GLUT-4 expression selectively in adipocytes on glucose homeostasis and body composition. Here we investigated molecular mechanisms for enhanced glucose tolerance and obesity in these mice. [U-14C]glucose incorporation into triglycerides, glyceride-glycerol, glyceride-fatty acids, CO2, and lactate was measured in adipocytes incubated at 3, 0.5, and 3 microM glucose with or without maximally stimulating insulin. In nontransgenic and transgenic mice, the major pathway for glucose metabolism shifts from lipogenesis at tracer glucose concentration to glycolysis at physiological glucose concentration. In transgenic adipocytes incubated at 3 microM glucose, metabolism via all major pathways is enhanced by 8.6- to 38-fold in the absence of insulin and 3- to 13-fold in the presence of insulin. At physiological glucose concentration, constitutive metabolism to triglycerides, CO2, and lactate is two- to threefold greater in transgenic than in nontransgenic adipocytes. De novo fatty acid synthesis is preferentially increased: 31-fold for basal and 21-fold for insulin-stimulated compared with nontransgenic adipocytes. Thus overexpression of GLUT-4 in adipocytes of transgenic mice results in increased glucose metabolism in all major pathways, with differential regulation of the pathways involved in lipogenesis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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