Protein Important in Glucose Control in Rats

Regulation suggests that BMP-9 may be the unknown hepatic insulin-sensitizing substance

THURSDAY, Aug. 21 (HealthDay News) -- Bone morphogenetic protein-9 (BMP-9) is important in maintaining glucose homeostasis in normal rats and its regulation based on feeding status suggests that it may be the currently unknown hepatic insulin-sensitizing substance (HISS), according to research published online Aug. 14 in Endocrinology.

Luciana C. Caperuto from the Federal University of Sao Paulo in Diadema, Brazil, and colleagues examined the effect of insulin resistance (induced by prolonged fasting plus dexamethasone, or pinealectomy) on BMP-9 in rats. The protein is predominantly expressed in non-parenchymal liver cells and improves glucose homeostasis in diabetic mice, the authors note.

The researchers found that glucose and insulin stimulated BMP-9 expression and processing in normal rats, which was reduced by previous exposure to dexamethasone, a known inducer of insulin resistance. Prolonged fasting (for 72 hours) blocked the normal induction of BMP-9 expression and processing after refeeding. In rats fasting for 12 hours, blocking BMP-9 with an antibody induced glucose intolerance and insulin resistance, the investigators report.

"Collectively, the present results demonstrate that BMP-9 plays an important role in the control of glucose homeostasis of the normal rat," Caperuto and colleagues conclude. "BMP-9 regulation according to the feeding status and the presence of diabetogenic factors reinforces the hypothesis that BMP-9 might exert the role of HISS in glucose homeostasis physiology."

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