H-ras induces glucose uptake in brown adipocytes in an insulin- and phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase-independent manner.

Research paper by A M AM Valverde, P P Navarro, M M Benito, M M Lorenzo

Indexed on: 23 Sep '98Published on: 23 Sep '98Published in: Experimental Cell Research


Fetal brown adipocytes (parental cells) expressed mainly Glut4 mRNA glucose transporter, the expression of Glut1 mRNA being much lower. At physiological doses, insulin stimulation for 15 min increased 3-fold glucose uptake and doubled the amount of Glut4 protein located at the plasma membrane. Moreover, phosphatidylinositol (PI) 3-kinase activity was induced by the presence of insulin in those cells, glucose uptake being precluded by PI 3-kinase inhibitors such as wortmannin or LY294002. H-raslys12-transformed brown adipocytes showed a 10-fold higher expression of Glut1 mRNA and protein than parental cells, Glut4 gene expression being completely down-regulated. Glucose uptake increased by 10-fold in transformed cells compared to parental cells; this uptake was unaltered in the presence of insulin and/or wortmannin. Transient transfection of parental cells with a dominant form of active Ras increased basal glucose uptake by 5-fold, no further effects being observed in the presence of insulin. However, PI 3-kinase activity (immunoprecipitated with anti-alphap85 subunit of PI 3-kinase) remained unaltered in H-ras permanent and transient transfectants. Our results indicate that activated Ras induces brown adipocyte glucose transport in an insulin-independent manner, this induction not involving PI 3-kinase activation.