Because Pi deprivation markedly affects the Na/Pi co-transporter in kidney and has been related to insulin resistance and glucose intolerance, the effect of a Pi-deficient diet on the liver microsomal glucose-6-phosphatase (G6Pase) system was investigated. Rats were fed with a control diet (+Pi) or a diet deficient in phosphate (-Pi) for 2 days and killed on the morning of the third day, after an overnight fast (fasted) or not (fed). Kinetic parameters of Pi transport (t½ and equilibration) into liver microsomes were not changed by the different nutritional conditions. In contrast, it was found that G6Pase activity was significantly increased in the (-Pi) groups. This was due to an increase in the Vmax of the enzyme, without change in the Km for G6P. There was no correlation between liver microsomal glycogen content and G6Pase activity, but both protein abundance and mRNA of liver 36 kDa catalytic subunit of G6Pase (p36) were increased. The mRNA of the putative G6P translocase protein (p46) was changed in parallel with that of the catalytic subunit, but the p46 immunoreactive protein was unchanged. These findings indicate that dietary Pi deficiency causes increased G6Pase activity by up-regulation of the expression of the 36 kDa-catalytic-subunit gene.

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