Featured Articles

Volume 4 | No. 9 | Sept. 2015

Leptin receptor deletion from insulin- or proglucagon-expressing cellsIn addition to its central actions, roles for the hormone leptin have also been suggested in the periphery. Using a well-defined and efficient Cre deleter strain, Soedling and colleagues demonstrate that leptin signaling in β cells plays a physiologically relevant, albeit very limited, role to control insulin secretion in vivo. Similarly, leptin has a relatively minor, if any, role in the control of glucagon secretion from α cells.

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Pannexin 1 is required for full activation of insulin-stimulated glucose uptake in adipocytesExtracellular nucleotide signaling contributes to the control of metabolic homeostasis in adipocytes, but the mechanisms of nucleotide release are not known. Adamson and colleagues now establish Panx1 channels as mediators of controlled extracellular nucleotide release from adipocytes. They show that Panx1-dependent ATP release is required for full activation of insulin-induced glucose uptake and identify insulin as a novel mediator of Panx1 channel activation.

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Oxidative phosphorylation capacity in white adipocytes of obese miceSchöttl and colleagues clarify the relationship between white adipocyte mitochondrial alterations and impaired glucose homeostasis in obesity. Using different mice models of obesity, they identify reduced mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation in white adipocytes as a general hallmark of obesity but also independent of glucose tolerance status.

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The AMPK activator R419 improves exercise capacity and skeletal muscle insulin sensitivity in obese miceR419 is a recently described mitochondrial complex I inhibitor that acutely activates the AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK). Marcinko and colleagues demonstrate that chronic treatment with R419 lowers fasting insulin, improves glucose tolerance and insulin-stimulated glucose disposal in skeletal muscle, independently of alterations in adiposity and AMPK. In addition, R419 treatment increases exercise capacity and electron transport chain content and activity in WT mice but not in AMPK-MKO. The data indicate that R419 mimics many of the effects of chronic exercise training in skeletal muscle and that R419 may be of therapeutic importance.

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The 60 Second Metabolist
In this section authors briefly report on their work recently published in Molecular Metabolism.

Watch the most recent interview by clicking the video still. The link "referring article" directs you to this author's publication.

Jaqueline Beaudry
Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum Research Institute, Sinai Health System, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
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Non-coding RNAs in Metabolic Diseases
Hellerup, Denmark
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