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Adipsin is an adipokine that improves β cell function in diabetes.
Cell.Jul 03, 2014;158(1):41-53.
Lo JC, Ljubicic S, Leibiger B, Kern M, Leibiger IB, Moede T, Kelly ME, Chatterjee Bhowmick D, Murano I, Cohen P, Banks AS, Khandekar MJ, Dietrich A, Flier JS, Cinti S, Blüher M, Danial NN, Berggren PO, Spiegelman BM.
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and the Department of Cell Biology, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115, USA. Electronic address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
A hallmark of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) is the development of pancreatic β cell failure, which results in insulinopenia and hyperglycemia. We show that the adipokine adipsin has a beneficial role in maintaining β cell function. Animals genetically lacking adipsin have glucose intolerance due to insulinopenia; isolated islets from these mice have reduced glucose-stimulated insulin secretion. Replenishment of adipsin to diabetic mice treated hyperglycemia by boosting insulin secretion. We identify C3a, a peptide generated by adipsin, as a potent insulin secretagogue and show that the C3a receptor is required for these beneficial effects of adipsin. C3a acts on islets by augmenting ATP levels, respiration, and cytosolic free Ca(2+). Finally, we demonstrate that T2DM patients with β cell failure are deficient in adipsin. These findings indicate that the adipsin/C3a pathway connects adipocyte function to β cell physiology, and manipulation of this molecular switch may serve as a therapy in T2DM.