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This study was conducted to determine whether two estrus phases (proestrus and diestrus) in female rats may influence the metabolic response to a high-fat diet and/or stress, focusing on pancreatic insulin secretion and content. Animals were divided into high-fat and normal diet groups, then each group was subdivided into stress and non-stress groups, and finally, each one of these was divided into proestrus and diestrus subgroups. At the end of high-fat diet treatment, foot-shock stress was applied to the animals. Then, blood samples were taken to measure plasma factors. Finally, the pancreas was removed for determination of glucose transporter 2 (GLUT2) protein levels and assessment of insulin content and secretion of the isolated islets. In the normal and high-fat diet groups, stress increased plasma corticosterone concentration in both phases. In both study phases, high-fat diet consumption decreased estradiol and increased leptin plasma levels. In the high-fat diet group in response to high glucose concentration, a reduction in insulin secretion was observed in the proestrus phase compared with the same phase in the normal diet group in the presence and absence of stress. Also, high-fat diet decreased the insulin content of islets in the proestrus phase compared with the normal diet. High-fat diet and/or stress caused a reduction in islet GLUT2 protein levels in both phases. In conclusion, it seems possible that high-fat diet alone or combined with foot-shock, predispose female rats to impaired insulin secretion, at least in part, by interfering with estradiol levels in the proestrus phase and decreasing pancreatic GLUT2 protein levels.


M Salimi, H Zardooz, F Khodagholi, F Rostamkhani, F Shaerzadeh. High-fat diet with stress impaired islets' insulin secretion by reducing plasma estradiol and pancreatic GLUT2 protein levels in rats' proestrus phase. Journal of physiology and pharmacology : an official journal of the Polish Physiological Society. 2016 Oct;67(5):653-666

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PMID: 28011946

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