The defining feature of pancreatic islet β-cell function is the precise coordination of changes in blood glucose levels with insulin secretion to regulate systemic glucose homeostasis. While ATP has long been heralded as a critical metabolic coupling factor to trigger insulin release, glucose-derived metabolites have been suggested to further amplify fuel-stimulated insulin secretion. The mitochondrial export of citrate and isocitrate through the citrate-isocitrate carrier (CIC) has been suggested to initiate a key pathway that amplifies glucose-stimulated insulin secretion, though the physiological significance of β-cell CIC-to-glucose homeostasis has not been established. Here, we generated constitutive and adult CIC β-cell knockout (KO) mice and demonstrate that these animals have normal glucose tolerance, similar responses to diet-induced obesity, and identical insulin secretion responses to various fuel secretagogues. Glucose-stimulated NADPH production was impaired in β-cell CIC KO islets, whereas glutathione reduction was retained. Furthermore, suppression of the downstream enzyme cytosolic isocitrate dehydrogenase (Idh1) inhibited insulin secretion in wild-type islets but failed to impact β-cell function in β-cell CIC KO islets. Our data demonstrate that the mitochondrial CIC is not required for glucose-stimulated insulin secretion and that additional complexities exist for the role of Idh1 and NADPH in the regulation of β-cell function.
© 2021 by the American Diabetes Association.