A stable clone of rat mesangial cells expressing antisense GLUT-1 (i.e., MCGT1AS cells) was developed to protect them from high glucose exposure. GLUT-1 protein was reduced 50%, and the 2-deoxy-[3H]glucose uptake rate was reduced 33% in MCGT1AS. MCLacZ control cells and MCGT1 GLUT-1-overexpressing cells were used for comparisons. In MCLacZ, 20 mM D-glucose increased GLUT-1 transcription 90% vs. no increase in MCGT1AS. Glucose (8 mM) and 12 mM xylitol [a hexose monophosphate (HMP) shunt substrate] did not stimulate GLUT-1 transcription. An 87% replacement of the standard 8 mM D-glucose with 3-O-methylglucose reduced GLUT-1 transcription 80%. D-Glucose (20 mM) increased fibronectin mRNA and protein by 47 and 100%, respectively, in MCLacZ vs. no increases in MCGT1AS. Fibronectin synthesis was elevated 48% in MCGT1 and reduced 44% in MCGT1AS. We conclude that 1) transcription of GLUT-1 in response to D-glucose depends on glucose metabolism, although not through the HMP shunt, and 2) antisense GLUT-1 treatment of mesangial cells blocks D-glucose-induced GLUT-1 and fibronectin expression, thereby demonstrating a protective effect that could be beneficial in the setting of diabetes.
- Chloramphenicol acetyltransferase assay
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