Regulation of glucose transporter translocation in health and diabetes

Annu Rev Biochem. 2012;81:507-32. doi: 10.1146/annurev-biochem-060109-094246. Epub 2012 Apr 5.

Abstract

To enhance glucose uptake into muscle and fat cells, insulin stimulates the translocation of GLUT4 glucose transporters from intracellular membranes to the cell surface. This response requires the intersection of insulin signaling and vesicle trafficking pathways, and it is compromised in the setting of overnutrition to cause insulin resistance. Insulin signals through AS160/Tbc1D4 and Tbc1D1 to modulate Rab GTPases and through the Rho GTPase TC10α to act on other targets. In unstimulated cells, GLUT4 is incorporated into specialized storage vesicles containing IRAP, LRP1, sortilin, and VAMP2, which are sequestered by TUG, Ubc9, and other proteins. Insulin mobilizes these vesicles directly to the plasma membrane, and it modulates the trafficking itinerary so that cargo recycles from endosomes during ongoing insulin exposure. Knowledge of how signaling and trafficking pathways are coordinated will be essential to understanding the pathogenesis of diabetes and the metabolic syndrome and may also inform a wide range of other physiologies.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Diabetes Mellitus / metabolism*
  • Glucose / metabolism
  • Glucose Transport Proteins, Facilitative / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Insulin / metabolism*
  • Signal Transduction*

Substances

  • Glucose Transport Proteins, Facilitative
  • Insulin
  • Glucose