Rat hepatocytes in monolayer culture were preincubated for 19 h with 1 microM-dexamethasone, and the incubation was continued for a further 23 h with [14C]oleate, [3H]glycerol and 1 microM-dexamethasone. Dexamethasone increased the secretion of triacylglycerol into the medium in particles that had the properties of very-low-density lipoproteins. The increased secretion was matched by a decrease in the triacylglycerol and phosphatidylcholine that remained in the hepatocytes. Preincubating the hepatocytes for the total 42 h period with 36 nM-insulin decreased the amount of triacylglycerol in the medium and in the cells after the final incubation for 23 h with radioactive substrates. However, insulin had no significant effect on the triacylglycerol content of the cell and medium when it was present only in the final 23 h incubation. Insulin antagonized the effects of dexamethasone in stimulating the secretion of triacylglycerol from the hepatocytes, especially when it was present throughout the total 42 h period. The labelling of lysophosphatidylcholine in the medium when hepatocytes were incubated with [14C]oleate and [3H]glycerol was greater than that of phosphatidylcholine. The appearance of this lipid in the medium, unlike that of triacylglycerol and phosphatidylcholine, was not stimulated by dexamethasone, or inhibited by colchicine. However, the presence of lysophosphatidylcholine in the medium was decreased when the hepatocytes were incubated with both dexamethasone and insulin. These findings are discussed in relation to the control of the synthesis of glycerolipids and the secretion of very-low-density lipoproteins and lysophosphatidylcholine by the liver, particularly in relation to the interactions of glucocorticoids and insulin.

This content is only available as a PDF.