Genistein Acutely Stimulates Insulin Secretion in Pancreatic β-Cells Through a cAMP-Dependent Protein Kinase Pathway

Department of Human Nutrition, Foods and Exercise, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, VA 24060, USA.
Diabetes (Impact Factor: 8.47). 05/2006; 55(4):1043-50. DOI: 10.2337/diabetes.55.04.06.db05-1089
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Although genistein, a soy isoflavone, has beneficial effects on various tissues, it is unclear whether it plays a role in physiological insulin secretion. Here, we present evidence that genistein increases rapid glucose-stimulated insulin secretion (GSIS) in both insulin-secreting cell lines (INS-1 and MIN6) and mouse pancreatic islets. Genistein elicited a significant effect at a concentration as low as 10 nmol/l with a maximal effect at 5 micromol/l. The effect of genistein on GSIS was not dependent on estrogen receptor and also not related to an inhibition of protein tyrosine kinase (PTK). Consistent with its effect on GSIS, genistein increases intracellular cAMP and activates protein kinase A (PKA) in both cell lines and the islets by a mechanism that does not involve estrogen receptor or PTK. The induced cAMP by genistein, at physiological concentrations, may result primarily from enhanced adenylate cyclase activity. Pharmacological or molecular intervention of PKA activation indicated that the insulinotropic effect of genistein is primarily mediated through PKA. These findings demonstrated that genistein directly acts on pancreatic beta-cells, leading to activation of the cAMP/PKA signaling cascade to exert an insulinotropic effect, thereby providing a novel role of soy isoflavones in the regulation of insulin secretion.

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