Journal of cellular biochemistry

A Role for Focal Adhesion Kinase in the Stimulation of Glucose Transport in Cardiomyocytes.

PMID 27428469


Stimulation of glucose transport is markedly impaired in cardiomyocytes exposed to free fatty acids (FFA), despite relative preservation of canonical insulin- or metabolic stress signaling. We determined whether Focal Adhesion Kinase (FAK) activity is required for stimulation of glucose transport in cardiomyocytes, and whether FAK downregulation participates in FFA-induced impairment of glucose transport stimulation. Glucose transport, measured in isolated cultured cardiomyocytes, was acutely stimulated either by insulin treatment, or by metabolic inhibition with oligomycin resulting in AMP-activated kinase (AMPK) activation. FAK activity was inhibited pharmacologically by preincubation with PF-573,228 (PF). FAK activity was assessed from its autophosphorylation on residue Y397, and from the phosphorylation of its target paxillin on Y118. Y397 FAK phosphorylation was reduced in cultured cardiomyocytes chronically exposed to FFA. Preincubation with PF prior to determination of glucose transport resulted in a significant reduction of oligomycin-stimulated glucose transport, with a lesser reduction in insulin-stimulated glucose transport. Insulin and AMPK signaling was unaffected by PF preincubation. siRNA-mediated FAK knockdown also resulted in reduced oligomycin-stimulated glucose transport. Chronic treatment of FFA-exposed cardiomyocytes with phenylephrine or a phorbol ester restored FAK activity and improved glucose transport. In conclusion, stimulation of glucose transport in cardiomyocytes requires FAK activity prior to stimulation. The chronic reduction of FAK activity in cardiomyocytes exposed to FFA contributes to the loss of glucose transport responsiveness to insulin or metabolic inhibition. J. Cell. Biochem. 118: 670-677, 2017. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.