This study was designed to determine whether chronic chemical activation of AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) would increase glucose transporter GLUT-4 and hexokinase in muscles similarly to periodic elevation of AMPK that accompanies endurance exercise training. The adenosine analog, 5-aminoimidazole-4-carboxamide ribonucleoside (AICAR), has previously been shown to be taken up by cells and phosphorylated to form a compound (5-aminoimidazole-4-carboxamide ribonucleotide) that mimics the effect of AMP on AMPK. A single injection of AICAR resulted in a marked increase in AMPK in epitrochlearis and gastrocnemius/plantaris muscles 60 min later. When rats were injected with AICAR (1 mg/g body wt) for 5 days in succession and were killed 1 day after the last injection, GLUT-4 was increased by 100% in epitrochlearis muscle and by 60% in gastrocnemius muscle in response to AICAR. Hexokinase was also increased ∼2.5-fold in the gastrocnemius/plantaris. Gastrocnemius glycogen content was twofold higher in AICAR-treated rats than in controls. Chronic chemical activation of AMPK, therefore, results in increases in GLUT-4 protein, hexokinase activity, and glycogen, similarly to those induced by endurance training.
- acetyl-CoA carboxylase
- endurance training
- fatty acid oxidation
- glucose transport
- muscle contraction
Address for reprint requests and other correspondence: W. W. Winder, 545 WIDB, Dept. of Zoology, Brigham Young University, Provo, UT 84602 (E-mail:).
This work was supported by the National Institute of Arthritis Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases Grant AR-41438 to W. W. Winder.
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- Copyright © 1999 the American Physiological Society