[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Endothelial dysfunction is common in patients with GH deficiency who are at increased risk for premature cardiovascular death. GH regulates vascular tone and reactivity in humans.
Our objective was to explore the mechanisms underlying the GH's acute vascular effects. DESIGN AND STUDY SETTING: There were 10 healthy, lean and young, volunteers studied after an overnight fast. GH was infused systemically for 6 h at 0.06 microg/kg.min. Biopsy of the vastus lateralis muscle was done in seven subjects before and after GH infusion. Human aortic endothelial cells (HAECs) were incubated with GH in vitro.
GH infusion increased plasma GH to 32.9 +/- 1.5 ng/ml and forearm blood flow by 66% (P < 0.001). GH infusion did not significantly change plasma IGF-I concentrations, muscle IGF-I mRNA expression, and muscle Akt phosphorylation, suggesting a lack of IGF-I action in muscle. Because it was reported that GH exerts an acute vascular effect via a nitric oxide (NO)-dependent mechanism, we performed additional in vitro experiments using HAECs. HAECs express abundant GH receptors. Incubating HAECs with GH at 30 ng/ml for 3 or 6 h did not alter endothelial NO synthase (eNOS) protein content but time dependently increased the phosphorylation and activity of eNOS, thus demonstrating a direct effect of GH on endothelial cells.
GH exerts an acute vascular effect independent of both systemic and local IGF-I production, and this effect is likely via direct action on GH receptors and eNOS in the vascular endothelium.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Phosphoinositide (PI) 3-kinase is involved in insulin-mediated effects on glucose uptake, lipid deposition, and adiponectin secretion from adipocytes. Genetic disruption of the p85alpha regulatory subunit of PI 3-kinase increases insulin sensitivity, whereas elevated p85alpha levels are associated with insulin resistance through PI 3-kinase-dependent and -independent mechanisms. Adipose tissue plays a critical role in the antagonistic effects of growth hormone (GH) on insulin actions on carbohydrate and lipid metabolism through changes in gene transcription. The objective of this study was to assess the role of the p85alpha subunit of PI 3-kinase and PI 3-kinase signaling in GH-mediated insulin resistance in adipose tissue. To do this, p85alpha mRNA and protein expression and insulin receptor substrate (IRS)-1-associated PI 3-kinase activity were measured in white adipose tissue (WAT) of mice with GH excess, deficiency, and sufficiency. Additional studies using 3T3-F442A cells were conducted to confirm direct effects of GH on free p85alpha protein abundance. We found that p85alpha expression 1) is decreased in WAT from mice with isolated GH deficiency, 2) is increased in WAT from mice with chronic GH excess, 3) is acutely upregulated in WAT from GH-deficient and -sufficient mice after GH administration, and 4) is directly upregulated by GH in 3T3-F442A adipocytes. The insulin-induced increase in PI 3-kinase activity was robust in mice with GH deficiency, but not in mice with GH excess. In conclusion, GH regulates p85alpha expression and PI 3-kinase activity in WAT and provides a potential explanation for 1) the insulin hypersensitivity and associated obesity and hyperadiponectinemia of GH-deficient mice and 2) the insulin resistance and associated reduced fat mass and hypoadiponectinemia of mice with GH excess.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The gut peptide ghrelin, the endogenous ligand for the growth hormone secretagogue receptor, has been implicated not only in the regulation of pituitary growth hormone (GH) secretion but in a number of endocrine and nonendocrine functions, including appetitive behavior and carbohydrate substrate utilization. Nevertheless, recent genetic studies have failed to show any significant defects in GH levels, food intake, or body weight in adult ghrelin-deficient (Ghrl-/-) mice. Here we demonstrate that male Ghrl-/- mice are protected from the rapid weight gain induced by early exposure to a high-fat diet 3 weeks after weaning (6 weeks of age). This reduced weight gain was associated with decreased adiposity and increased energy expenditure and locomotor activity as the animals aged. Despite the absence of ghrelin, these Ghrl-/- mice showed a paradoxical preservation of the GH/IGF-1 axis, similar to that reported in lean compared with obese humans. These findings suggest an important role for endogenous ghrelin in the metabolic adaptation to nutrient availability.