IBRI RESEARCH PUBLISHED: Insulin Resistance Does Not Impair Mechanical Overload-Stimulated Glucose Uptake, but Does Alter the Metabolic Fate of Glucose in Mouse Muscle

July 01, 2020


Skeletal muscle glucose uptake and glucose metabolism are impaired in insulin resistance. Mechanical overload stimulates glucose uptake into insulin-resistant muscle; yet the mechanisms underlying this beneficial effect remain poorly understood.

This study examined whether a differential partitioning of glucose metabolism is part of the mechanosensitive mechanism underlying overload-stimulated glucose uptake in insulin-resistant muscle. Mice were fed a high-fat diet to induce insulin resistance. Plantaris muscle overload was induced by unilateral synergist ablation. After 5 days, muscles were excised for the following measurements: (1) [3H]-2-deoxyglucose uptake; (2) glycogen; 3) [5-3H]-glucose flux through glycolysis; (4) lactate secretion; (5) metabolites; and (6) immunoblots.

Overload increased glucose uptake ~80% in both insulin-sensitive and insulin-resistant muscles. Overload increased glycogen content ~20% and this was enhanced to ~40% in the insulin-resistant muscle. Overload did not alter glycolytic flux, but did increase muscle lactate secretion 40–50%. In both insulin-sensitive and insulin-resistant muscles, overload increased 6-phosphogluconate levels ~150% and decreased NADP:NADPH ~60%, indicating pentose phosphate pathway activation. Overload increased protein O-GlcNAcylation ~45% and this was enhanced to ~55% in the insulin-resistant muscle, indicating hexosamine pathway activation.

In conclusion, insulin resistance does not impair mechanical overload-stimulated glucose uptake but does alter the metabolic fate of glucose in muscle.

To read the complete research article, go to the International Journal of Molecular Sciences.