The ability of amylin to impair hepatic insulin action is controversial. We have found that the effect of amylin in primary cultured hepatocytes is strongly dependent on the culture conditions. Only in hepatocytes preincubated in the presence of fetal serum did amylin, at concentrations ranging from 1 to 100 nM, reduce insulin-stimulated glycogen synthesis rate and glycogen accumulation without showing direct effects. Neither basal glycogen synthase nor glycogen phosphorylase activity was modified by amylin treatment. Nevertheless, amylin (100 nM) blocked the activation of glycogen synthase by insulin. Amylin also proved capable of opposing the reduction in the expression of the phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase (PEPCK) gene induced by insulin, whereas the basal mRNA level of PEPCK was unaffected by amylin treatment. Thus, these results show that, in cultured rat hepatocytes, amylin is indeed able to interfere with insulin regulation of glycogenesis and PEPCK gene expression, favouring the hypothesis that amylin may modulate liver sensitivity to insulin.

This content is only available as a PDF.