Hyperglycemia-induced O-GlcNAcylation and truncation of, 4E-BP1 protein in liver of a mouse model of type 1 diabetes

Michael D. Dennis, Tabitha L. Schrufer, Sarah K. Bronson, Scot R. Kimball, Leonard S. Jefferson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


4E-BP1 is a protein that, in its hypophosphorylated state, binds the mRNA cap-binding protein eIF4E and represses capdependent mRNA translation. By doing so, it plays a major role in the regulation of gene expression by controlling the overall rate of mRNA translation as well as the selection of mRNAs for translation. Phosphorylation of 4E-BP1 causes it to release eIF4E to function inmRNAtranslation. 4E-BP1 is also subject to covalent addition ofN-acetylglucosamine to Ser or Thr residues (O-GlcNAcylation) as well as to truncation. In the truncated form, it is both resistant to phosphorylation and able to bind eIF4E with high affinity. In the present study, Ins2 Akita/+ diabetic mice were used to test the hypothesis that hyperglycemia and elevated flux of glucose through the hexosamine biosynthetic pathway lead to increased O-GlcNAcylation and truncation of 4E-BP1 and consequently decreased eIF4E function in the liver. The amounts of both full-length and truncated 4E-BP1 bound to eIF4E were significantly elevated in the liver of diabetic as compared with non-diabetic mice. In addition, O-GlcNAcylation of both the full-length and truncated proteins was elevated by 2.5- and 5-fold, respectively. Phlorizin treatment of diabetic mice lowered blood glucose concentrations and reduced the expression and O-GlcNAcylation of 4E-BP1. Additionally, when livers were perfused in the absence of insulin, 4E-BP1 phosphorylation in the livers of diabetic mice was normalized to the control value, yet O-GlcNAcylation and the association of 4E-BP1 with eIF4E remained elevated in the liver of diabetic mice. These findings provide insight into the pathogenesis of metabolic abnormalities associated with diabetes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)34286-34297
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number39
StatePublished - Oct 30 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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