Skeletal muscle is a major tissue for glucose metabolism and can store glucose as glycogen, convert glucose to lactate via glycolysis and fully oxidise glucose to CO2 Muscle has a limited capacity for gluconeogenesis but can convert lactate and alanine to glycogen. Gluconeogenesis requires FBP2, a muscle-specific form of fructose bisphosphatase that converts fructose-1,6-bisphosphate (F-1,6-bisP) to fructose-6-phosphate (F-6-P) opposing the activity of the ATP-consuming enzyme phosphofructokinase (PFK). In mammalian muscle, the activity of PFK is normally 100 times higher than FBP2 and therefore energy wasting cycling between PFK and FBP2 is low. In an attempt to increase substrate cycling between F-6-P and F-1,6-bisP and alter glucose metabolism, we overexpressed FBP2 using a muscle-specific adeno-associated virus (AAV-tMCK-FBP2). AAV was injected into the right tibialis muscle of rats, while the control contralateral left tibialis received a saline injection. Rats were fed a chow or 45% fat diet (HFD) for 5 weeks after which, hyperinsulinaemic-euglycaemic clamps were performed. Infection of the right tibialis with AAV-tMCK-FBP2 increased FBP2 activity 10 fold on average in chow and HFD rats (P < 0.0001). Overexpression of FBP2 significantly increased insulin-stimulated glucose uptake in tibialis of chow animals (control 14.3 ± 1.7; FBP2 17.6 ± 1.6 µmol/min/100 g) and HFD animals (control 9.6 ± 1.1; FBP2 11.2 ± 1.1µmol/min/100 g). The results suggest that increasing the capacity for cycling between F-1,6-bisP and F-6-P can increase the metabolism of glucose by introducing a futile cycle in muscle, but this increase is not sufficient to overcome muscle insulin resistance.
Keywords: fructose-1,6-bisphosphatase; glucose metabolism; insulin resistance; skeletal muscle.
© 2018 Society for Endocrinology.