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J Biol Chem. 1998 Sep 18;273(38):24620-3.

Expression of carbonic anhydrase V in pancreatic beta cells suggests role for mitochondrial carbonic anhydrase in insulin secretion.

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Edward A. Doisy Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Saint Louis University School of Medicine, St. Louis, Missouri 63104, USA.


Carbonic anhydrase V (CA-V) is a mitochondrial enzyme that provides bicarbonate for pyruvate carboxylase in liver and kidney. In the course of a survey of the tissue distribution of CA-V, we detected intense immunostaining in pancreatic islets when sections from rat and mouse pancreases were reacted with a polyclonal antibody to recombinant mouse CA-V. The distribution and large number of CA-V-positive cells in each islet suggested that they represented beta cells. Double immunofluorescence staining of tissue sections and isolated islet cells showed cellular colocalization of CA-V and insulin, confirming that beta cells contain CA-V. Western blotting of rat islets of Langerhans and primary beta cells showed 33- and 30-kDa polypeptides of precursor and mature CA-V, respectively. The CA-V expression was beta cell-specific since no CA-V immunoreaction was detected in the primary alpha cells. Immunohistochemical staining for CA-I, CA-II, CA-IV, CA-VI, and CA-IX was negative in beta cells, and Western blotting of beta cells also failed to identify any CA in beta cells except CA-V. The specific localization of CA-V in beta cells led us to hypothesize that CA-V may be functionally linked to the regulation of insulin secretion. Consistent with this hypothesis, the CA inhibitor acetazolamide was found to be a strong inhibitor of glucose-stimulated insulin secretion by isolated rat pancreatic islets.

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