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1.  Altered Insulin Receptor Signalling and β-Cell Cycle Dynamics in Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus 
PLoS ONE  2011;6(11):e28050.
Insulin resistance, reduced β-cell mass, and hyperglucagonemia are consistent features in type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). We used pancreas and islets from humans with T2DM to examine the regulation of insulin signaling and cell-cycle control of islet cells. We observed reduced β-cell mass and increased α-cell mass in the Type 2 diabetic pancreas. Confocal microscopy, real-time PCR and western blotting analyses revealed increased expression of PCNA and down-regulation of p27-Kip1 and altered expression of insulin receptors, insulin receptor substrate-2 and phosphorylated BAD. To investigate the mechanisms underlying these findings, we examined a mouse model of insulin resistance in β-cells – which also exhibits reduced β-cell mass, the β-cell-specific insulin receptor knockout (βIRKO). Freshly isolated islets and β-cell lines derived from βIRKO mice exhibited poor cell-cycle progression, nuclear restriction of FoxO1 and reduced expression of cell-cycle proteins favoring growth arrest. Re-expression of insulin receptors in βIRKO β-cells reversed the defects and promoted cell cycle progression and proliferation implying a role for insulin-signaling in β-cell growth. These data provide evidence that human β- and α-cells can enter the cell-cycle, but proliferation of β-cells in T2DM fails due to G1-to-S phase arrest secondary to defective insulin signaling. Activation of insulin signaling, FoxO1 and proteins in β-cell-cycle progression are attractive therapeutic targets to enhance β-cell regeneration in the treatment of T2DM.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0028050
PMCID: PMC3227614  PMID: 22140505
2.  Effects of Weight Loss in Metabolically Healthy Obese Subjects after Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Banding and Hypocaloric Diet 
PLoS ONE  2011;6(3):e17737.
Weight loss in metabolically healthy obese (MHO) subjects may result in deterioration of cardio-metabolic risk profile. We analyzed the effects of weight loss induced by laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding (LAGB) on cardio-metabolic risk factors in MHO and insulin resistant obese (IRO) individuals. This study included 190 morbidly obese non-diabetic subjects. Obese individuals were stratified on the basis of their insulin sensitivity index (ISI), estimated from an OGTT, into MHO (ISI index in the upper quartile) and IRO (ISI in the three lower quartiles). Anthropometric and cardio-metabolic variables were measured at baseline and 6-months after LAGB. Six months after LAGB, anthropometric measures were significantly reduced in both MHO and IRO. Percent changes in body weight, BMI, and waist circumference did not differ between the two groups. Fasting glucose and insulin levels, triglycerides, AST, and ALT were significantly reduced, and HDL cholesterol significantly increased, in both MHO and IRO subjects with no differences in percent changes from baseline. Insulin sensitivity increased in both MHO and IRO group. Insulin secretion was significantly reduced in the IRO group only. However, the disposition index significantly increased in both MHO and IRO individuals with no differences in percent changes from baseline between the two groups. The change in insulin sensitivity correlated with the change in BMI (r = −0.43; P<0.0001). In conclusion, our findings reinforce the recommendation that weight loss in response to LAGB intervention should be considered an appropriate treatment option for morbidly obese individuals regardless of their metabolic status, i.e. MHO vs. IRO subjects.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0017737
PMCID: PMC3050899  PMID: 21408112
3.  Proteomics Reveals Novel Oxidative and Glycolytic Mechanisms in Type 1 Diabetic Patients' Skin Which Are Normalized by Kidney-Pancreas Transplantation 
PLoS ONE  2010;5(3):e9923.
Background
In type 1 diabetes (T1D) vascular complications such as accelerated atherosclerosis and diffused macro-/microangiopathy are linked to chronic hyperglycemia with a mechanism that is not yet well understood. End-stage renal disease (ESRD) worsens most diabetic complications, particularly, the risk of morbidity and mortality from cardiovascular disease is increased several fold.
Methods and Findings
We evaluated protein regulation and expression in skin biopsies obtained from T1D patients with and without ESRD, to identify pathways of persistent cellular changes linked to diabetic vascular disease. We therefore examined pathways that may be normalized by restoration of normoglycemia with kidney-pancreas (KP) transplantation. Using proteomic and ultrastructural approaches, multiple alterations in the expression of proteins involved in oxidative stress (catalase, superoxide dismutase 1, Hsp27, Hsp60, ATP synthase δ chain, and flavin reductase), aerobic and anaerobic glycolysis (ACBP, pyruvate kinase muscle isozyme, and phosphoglycerate kinase 1), and intracellular signaling (stratifin-14-3-3, S100-calcyclin, cathepsin, and PPI rotamase) as well as endothelial vascular abnormalities were identified in T1D and T1D+ESRD patients. These abnormalities were reversed after KP transplant. Increased plasma levels of malondialdehyde were observed in T1D and T1D+ESRD patients, confirming increased oxidative stress which was normalized after KP transplant.
Conclusions
Our data suggests persistent cellular changes of anti-oxidative machinery and of aerobic/anaerobic glycolysis are present in T1D and T1D+ESRD patients, and these abnormalities may play a key role in the pathogenesis of hyperglycemia-related vascular complications. Restoration of normoglycemia and removal of uremia with KP transplant can correct these abnormalities. Some of these identified pathways may become potential therapeutic targets for a new generation of drugs.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0009923
PMCID: PMC2848014  PMID: 20360867

Results 1-3 (3)