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JOURNAL ARTICLE

The human glucagon-like peptide-1 analogue liraglutide regulates pancreatic beta-cell proliferation and apoptosis via an AMPK/mTOR/P70S6K signaling pathway

Xin-Yu Miao, Zhao-Yan Gu, Ping Liu, Yuan Hu, Lin Li, Yan-Ping Gong, Hua Shu, Yu Liu, Chun-Lin Li
Peptides 2013, 39: 71-9
23116613
Glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1), an effective therapeutic agent for the treatment of diabetes, has been proven to protect pancreatic beta cells through many pathways. Recent evidence demonstrates that AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK), as a metabolic regulator, coordinates beta-cell protein synthesis through regulation of the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) signaling pathway. The purpose of the present study was to explore whether liraglutide, a human GLP-1 analogue, protects beta cells via AMPK/mTOR signaling. We evaluated INS-1 beta-cell line proliferation using the Cell Counting Kit-8, and examined the effect of GLP-1 on cellular ATP levels using an ATP assay kit. mTOR pathway protein expression levels were tested by Western blotting and glucolipotoxicity-induced cell apoptosis was evaluated by flow cytometry. Liraglutide increased beta-cell viability at an optimum concentration of 100 nmol/L in the presence of 11.1 or 30 mmol/L glucose. Liraglutide (100 nmol/L) activated mTOR and its downstream effectors, 70-kDa ribosomal protein S6 kinase and eIF4E-binding protein-1, in INS-1 cells. This effect was abated by pathway blockers: the AMPK activator AICAR and the mTOR inhibitor rapamycin. Furthermore, the effect of liraglutide on beta-cell proliferation was inhibited by AICAR and rapamycin. Liraglutide increased cellular ATP levels. In addition, liraglutide protected beta cells from glucolipotoxicity-induced apoptosis. This response was also prevented by rapamycin treatment. These results suggest that the enhancement of beta-cell proliferation by that GLP-1 receptor agonist liraglutide is mediated, at least in part, by AMPK/mTOR signaling. Liraglutide also prevents beta-cell glucolipotoxicity by activating mTOR.

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