GLUT4 overexpression or deficiency in adipocytes of transgenic mice alters the composition of GLUT4 vesicles and the subcellular localization of GLUT4 and insulin-responsive aminopeptidase

  • Carvalho E
  • Schellhorn S
  • Zabolotny J
 et al. 
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The majority of GLUT4 is sequestered in unique intracellular vesicles in the absence of insulin. Upon insulin stimulation GLUT4 vesicles translocate to, and fuse with, the plasma membrane. To determine the effect of GLUT4 content on the distribution and subcellular trafficking of GLUT4 and other vesicle proteins, adipocytes of adipose-specific, GLUT4-deficient (aP2-GLUT4-/-) mice and adipose-specific, GLUT4-overexpressing (aP2-GLUT4-Tg) mice were studied. GLUT4 amount was reduced by 80-95% in aP2-GLUT4-/- adipocytes and increased approximately 10-fold in aP2-GLUT4-Tg adipocytes compared with controls. Insulin-responsive aminopeptidase (IRAP) protein amount was decreased 35% in aP2-GLUT4-/- adipocytes and increased 45% in aP2-GLUT4-Tg adipocytes. VAMP2 protein was also decreased by 60% in aP2-GLUT4-/- adipocytes and increased 2-fold in aP2-GLUT4-Tg adipocytes. IRAP and VAMP2 mRNA levels were unaffected in aP2-GLUT4-Tg, suggesting that overexpression of GLUT4 affects IRAP and VAMP2 protein stability. The amount and subcellular distribution of syntaxin4, SNAP23, Munc-18c, and GLUT1 were unchanged in either aP2-GLUT4-/- or aP2-GLUT4-Tg adipocytes, but transferrin receptor was partially redistributed to the plasma membrane in aP2-GLUT4-Tg adipocytes. Immunogold electron microscopy revealed that overexpression of GLUT4 in adipocytes increased the number of GLUT4 molecules per vesicle nearly 2-fold and the number of GLUT4 and IRAP-containing vesicles per cell 3-fold. In addition, the proportion of cellular GLUT4 and IRAP at the plasma membrane in unstimulated aP2-GLUT4-Tg adipocytes was increased 4- and 2-fold, respectively, suggesting that sequestration of GLUT4 and IRAP is saturable. Our results show that GLUT4 overexpression or deficiency affects the amount of other GLUT4-vesicle proteins including IRAP and VAMP2 and that GLUT4 sequestration is saturable.

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