Background-Impaired insulin-mediated vasodilation might contribute to vascular damage in insulin-resistant states. Little is known about insulin regulation of nitric oxide (NO) synthesis in insulin-resistant cells. The aim of this work was to investigate insulin regulation of NO synthesis in human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) carrying the IRS-1 gene G972R variant, known to be associated with impaired insulin activation of the PI3-kinase (PI3-K) pathway in transfected cells. Methods and Results-HUVECs were screened for the presence of the G972R-IRS-1 (HUVEC-G972R) variant by restriction fragment length polymorphisms. After 24-hour exposure to 10-7 mol/L insulin, endothelial NO synthase (eNOS) mRNA (reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction), eNOS protein levels (Western blotting), and NOS activity (conversion of [3H]arginine into [3H]citrulline) were increased in wild-type HUVECs (HUVEC-WT), whereas they did not change from baseline in HUVEC-G972R. Compared with HUVEC-WT, in HUVEC-G972R after 2 and 10 minutes of insulin stimulation, IRS-1-associated PI3-K activity was reduced by 47% and 32%, respectively; Akt phosphorylation was decreased by 40% at both time points; and eNOS-Ser1177 phosphorylation was reduced by 38% and 51%, respectively. In HUVEC-WT, eNOS-Thr495 phosphorylation decreased after insulin stimulation. In contrast, in HUVEC-G972R, eNOS-Thr495 phosphorylation increased after insulin stimulation and was 40% greater than in HUVEC-WT. Conclusions-Our data demonstrate that genetic impairment of the (IRS)-1/PI3-K/PDK-1/Akt insulin signaling cascade determines impaired insulin-stimulated NO release and suggest that the G972R-IRS-1 polymorphism, through a direct impairment of Akt/eNOS activation in endothelial cells, may contribute to the genetic predisposition to develop endothelial dysfunction and cardiovascular disease.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||7|
|State||Published - Jan 27 2004|
- Nitric oxide synthase
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
- Physiology (medical)