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PloS one

Expression of Caveolin 1 is enhanced by DNA demethylation during adipocyte differentiation. status of insulin signaling.


PMID 24751908

Abstract

Caveolin 1 (Cav-1) is an essential constituent of adipocyte caveolae which binds the beta subunit of the insulin receptor (IR) and is implicated in the regulation of insulin signaling. We have found that, during adipocyte differentiation of 3T3-L1 cells the promoter, exon 1 and first intron of the Cav-1 gene undergo a demethylation process that is accompanied by a strong induction of Cav-1 expression, indicating that epigenetic mechanisms must have a pivotal role in this differentiation process. Furthermore, IR, PKB-Akt and Glut-4 expression are also increased during the differentiation process suggesting a coordinated regulation with Cav-1. Activation of Cav-1 protein by phosphorylation arises during the differentiation process, yet in fully mature adipocytes insulin is no longer able to significantly increase Cav-1 phosphorylation. However, these long-term differentiated cells are still able to respond adequately to insulin, increasing IR and PKB-Akt phosphorylation and glucose uptake. The activation of Cav-1 during the adipocyte differentiation process could facilitate the maintenance of insulin sensitivity by these fully mature adipocytes isolated from additional external stimuli. However, under the influence of physiological conditions associated to obesity, such as chronic inflammation and hypoxia, insulin sensitivity would finally be compromised.