Muscle contractile activity modulates GLUT4 protein content in the absence of insulin

K. Kawanaka*, Mitsuru Higuchi, H. Ohmori, S. Shimegi, O. Ezaki, S. Katsuta

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


We examined whether muscle contractile activity directly modulates GLUT4 protein content in rat skeletal muscle without the participation of insulin action or via amplified insulin action. To attain this purpose, the effects of increased, by training, or eliminated, by denervation, muscle contractile activity on muscle GLUT4 protein concentration were investigated in severely insulin-deficient diabetic rats. For the first set of experiments, insulin-deficient diabetic rats (induced by injection of 80 mg/kg B.W. streptozotocin) were trained for three weeks by treadmill running (90 min/day, 19 m/min, 10%, 6 days/week). GLUT4 protein concentration in soleus muscle was increased by 48% (p < 0.01) as compared with diabetic sedentary animals. For the second set of experiments, rats were injected with streptozotocin (100 mg/kg). The muscles innervated by the sciatic nerve of one leg were denervated four days after injection of streptozotocin. Three days after denervation, soleus muscles in both legs were excised. Insulin deficiency decreased GLUT4 protein concentration in innervated soleus muscle. In insulin-deficient diabetic rats, denervation also decreased soleus GLUT4 protein concentration by 50% (p < 0.01) as compared with the contralateral innervated muscle. Furthermore, the effects of insulin-deficiency and denervation on GLUT4 protein concentration were additive. These results provide evidence that muscle contractile activity directly modulates skeletal muscle GLUT4 protein concentration independent of insulin action.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)75-80
Number of pages6
JournalHormone and Metabolic Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1996
Externally publishedYes


  • Denervation
  • Exercise training
  • Insulin deficiency
  • Soleus
  • Streptozotocin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Endocrinology


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