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    Numerous studies have shown that Glucagon like peptide-1 (GLP-1) treatment can protect β cell function, but the exact mechanism remains unclear. We hypothesized that GLP-1 may protect β cell function via its action on insulin signaling pathway. Mice were fed with high fat diet (HFD, 20 weeks) in the presence or absence of GLP-1 receptor agonist (exenatide) treatment. The islet structure was demonstrated by HE staining. Immunofluorescence antibodies targeting insulin and glucagon were used to illustrate α and β cell distribution. The insulin and glucagon abundance was measured by ELISA using pancreatic homogenates. The molecules involved in insulin signaling pathway (IRc, IRS1, IRS2, mTOR) in islet were examined with immunohistochemistry and immunoblotting. The effect of IRS1 silencing on mTOR and apoptosis were examined on NIT cells(β cell line)with immunoblotting and flow cytometry. HE and immunofluorescence staining demonstrated that the normal structure of islet was deformed in HFD mice but preserved by exenatide. Insulin and glucagon contents were increased in islet and blood stream of HFD mice (HFD vs. Control, p<0.05) but resumed by exenatide. Meanwhile the expressions of IRc, IRS-1, mTOR from insulin signaling pathway and β cell apoptosis in the pancreas were significantly reduced (p<0.05) by HFD but reversed by exenatide. Exenatide improved insulin signaling pathway that was suppressed by HFD in mice islet. Our results reveal a novel mechanism of the protective effects of GLP-1 on β cell function. Copyright © 2020. Published by Elsevier Ltd.


    Heng Yang, Shuo Wang, Yingchun Ye, Min Xie, Yubin Li, Hong Jin, Jing Li, Ling Gao. GLP-1 preserves β cell function via improvement on islet insulin signaling in high fat diet feeding mice. Neuropeptides. 2021 Feb;85:102110

    PMID: 33307381

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