20-Hydroxyeicosatetraenoic acid (20-HETE) induces endothelial dysfunction and is correlated with diabetes. This study was designed to investigate the effects of 20-HETE on endothelial insulin signaling.Human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) or C57BL/6J mice were treated with 20-HETE in the presence or absence of insulin, and p-ERK1/2, p-JNK, IRS-1/PI3K/AKT/eNOS pathway, were examined in endothelial cells and aortas by immunoblotting. eNOS activity and nitric oxide production were measured. 20-HETE increased ERK1/2 phosphorylation and IRS-1 phosphorylation at Ser616; these effects were reversed by ERK1/2 inhibition. We further observed that 20-HETE treatment resulted in impaired insulin-stimulated IRS-1 phosphorylation at Tyr632 and subsequent PI3-kinase/Akt activation. Furthermore, 20-HETE treatment blocked insulin-stimulated phosphorylation of eNOS at the stimulatory Ser1177 site, eNOS activation and NO production; these effects were reversed by inhibiting ERK1/2. Treatment of C57BL/6J mice with 20-HETE resulted in ERK1/2 activation and impaired insulin-dependent activation of the IRS-1/PI3K/Akt/eNOS pathway in the aorta. Our data suggest that the 20-HETE activation of IRS-1 phosphorylation at Ser616 is dependent on ERK1/2 and leads to impaired insulin-stimulated vasodilator effects that are mediated by the IRS-1/PI3K/AKT/eNOS pathway.
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