Background: Glucagon-like peptide 2 (GLP-2) stimulates intestinal epithelial growth with high potency and specificity. However, the intracellular signaling pathways responsible for the growth-stimulatory action of GLP-2 are not clearly understood. Here we report possible signaling pathways mediating GLP-2's proliferative actions in the human intestinal epithelial cell line Caco-2.
Materials and methods: Caco-2 cells were subcultured under serum-deprived conditions in the presence or absence of GLP-2 (10 microM) and varying concentrations of inhibitors of three candidate kinases: genistein, a global tyrosine kinase inhibitor; LY294002, a phosphatidylinositide (PI) 3-kinase inhibitor; and PD 098059, a mitogen-activated/extracellular signal-regulated kinase (MEK) inhibitor. Proliferation was assessed using [(3)H]thymidine incorporation. Relative abundance of the phosphorylated forms of two specific mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs), ERK1 and ERK2, was assessed by Western blotting.
Results: GLP-2-treated cells demonstrated a greater than 10-fold increase in proliferation. This response was inhibited by genistein, LY294002, and PD 098059 in a dose-dependent fashion. A significantly greater abundance of the phosphorylated forms of both ERK-1 and ERK-2 was present in cells within 5 min of treatment with GLP-2.
Conclusions: GLP-2 stimulates the proliferation of Caco-2 cells in vitro. This increase in Caco-2 proliferation in response to GLP-2 may be due, at least in part, to the involvement of both the PI 3-kinase and the MAPK pathways.
Copyright 2000 Academic Press.