Age related obesity-induced shortening of GLUT4 mRNA poly(A) tail length in rat gastrocnemius skeletal muscle
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Obese insulin resistant animals and humans have shown reduced GLUT4 gene expression. Yet, in skeletal muscle, discrepancy between mRNA and protein regulation has been frequently observed, suggesting a post-transcriptional modulation. We investigated the GLUT4 expression in adipose tissue and muscle of obese 12-month-old (12-mo) rats, comparing with lean 2-month-old (2-mo) animals. Obesity was accompanied by insulin resistance, and 65% reduction (P < 0.01) in GLUT4 mRNA and protein in adipose tissue. However, in muscle, despite increased (P < 0.05) mRNA content, GLUT4 protein was unchanged. RNase H and poly(A) test assays showed a reduction (P < 0.01) of ∼80 adenines in the GLUT4 mRNA poly(A) tail of muscle from 12-mo rats, recognizing that the poly(A) tail length correlates with translation efficiency. Concluding, age related obesity of 12-mo rats involves suppression of GLUT4 expression in adipose tissue; however, in muscle, GLUT4 mRNA content increases, but with a shorter poly(A) tail, thus unchanging the protein content. © 2007 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.