Wortmannin, a PI3-kinase inhibitor: promoting effect on insulin secretion from pancreatic beta cells through a cAMP-dependent pathway

Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2000 Apr 21;270(3):798-805. doi: 10.1006/bbrc.2000.2514.


To determine the role of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3-kinase) in the regulation of insulin secretion, we examined the effect of wortmannin, a PI3-kinase inhibitor, on insulin secretion using the isolated perfused rat pancreas and freshly isolated islets. In the perfused pancreas, 10(-8) M wortmannin significantly enhanced the insulin secretion induced by the combination of 8.3 mM glucose and 10(-5) M forskolin. In isolated islets, cyclic AMP (cAMP) content was significantly increased by wortmannin in the presence of 3.3 mM, 8.3 mM, and 16.7 mM glucose with or without forskolin. In the presence of 16.7 mM glucose with or without forskolin, wortmannin promoted insulin secretion significantly. On the other hand, in the presence of 8.3 mM glucose with forskolin, wortmannin augmented insulin secretion significantly; although wortmannin tended to promote insulin secretion in the presence of glucose alone, it was not significant. To determine if wortmannin increases cAMP content by promoting cAMP production or by inhibiting cAMP reduction, we examined the effects of wortmannin on 10(-4) M 3-isobutyl-1-methylxantine (IBMX)-induced insulin secretion and cAMP content. In contrast to the effect on forskolin-induced secretion, wortmannin had no effect on IBMX-induced insulin secretion or cAMP content. Moreover, wortmannin had no effect on nonhydrolyzable cAMP analog-induced insulin secretion in the perfusion study. These data indicate that wortmannin induces insulin secretion by inhibiting phosphodiesterase to increase cAMP content, and suggest that PI3-kinase inhibits insulin secretion by activating phosphodiesterase to reduce cAMP content.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • 1-Methyl-3-isobutylxanthine / pharmacology
  • Androstadienes / pharmacology*
  • Animals
  • Colforsin / pharmacology*
  • Cyclic AMP / metabolism*
  • Enzyme Inhibitors / pharmacology
  • Glucose / pharmacology
  • In Vitro Techniques
  • Insulin / metabolism*
  • Insulin Secretion
  • Islets of Langerhans / drug effects*
  • Islets of Langerhans / metabolism
  • Islets of Langerhans / physiology
  • Kinetics
  • Male
  • Perfusion
  • Phosphoinositide-3 Kinase Inhibitors*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Signal Transduction
  • Wortmannin


  • Androstadienes
  • Enzyme Inhibitors
  • Insulin
  • Phosphoinositide-3 Kinase Inhibitors
  • Colforsin
  • Cyclic AMP
  • Glucose
  • 1-Methyl-3-isobutylxanthine
  • Wortmannin