Til bevillingsoversigt

Identification of signaling pathways and cell surface receptor of Isthmin-1

Carlsbergfondets internationaliseringsstipendier

What

Apart from insulin, only a few factors are known to increase glucose uptake in cells. We have identified one such factor as a novel hormone produced by fat cells. The project will seek to identify how cells sense this and other hormones and how they convey information about their presence to initiate subsequent responses.

Why

Brown and inducible white fat are tissues that transform chemical energy into heat upon cold exposure or after a meal. This process is driven by insulin-dependent and insulin-independent mechanisms, but the precise mechanisms and molecules involved are not well understood. Establishing the molecular mechanisms underlying control of glucose uptake and utilization in cells will open up a new area of research on insulin-independent factors.

How

I will stimulate fat cells, liver cells and muscle cells with the newly identified hormone. I will use a suite of molecular techniques on the cells stimulated with novel and well-known hormones in order to pinpoint the exact molecules that transmit information between cells. These techniques include mapping the proteins that are activated in the presence of insulin-independent hormones.

Next, I will remove the ability for the cells to produce proteins activated, and test whether the cells still increase glucose uptake by this novel hormone. By these methods I expect to get a detailed map of how cells convey information to regulate glucose metabolism.

SSR

Dysfunctional glucose metabolism as seen in for example type 2 diabetes poses a major burden to society and to the individual. Research on the regulation of glucose uptake in cells may improve future treatment strategies for diabetes and obesity.