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Serine/threonine protein kinase 25 (STK25): a novel negative regulator of lipid and glucose metabolism in rodent and human skeletal muscle

Journal article
Authors Annika Nerstedt
Emmelie Cansby
Christian X Andersson
M. Laakso
A. Stancakova
M. Bluher
Ulf Smith
Margit Mahlapuu
Published in Diabetologia
Volume 55
Issue 6
Pages 1797-1807
ISSN 0012-186X
Publication year 2012
Published at Institute of Medicine, Department of Molecular and Clinical Medicine
Pages 1797-1807
Language en
Keywords Glucose metabolism, Lipid oxidation, Serine/threonine protein kinase 25, Skeletal muscle, Type 2 diabetes
Subject categories Diabetology


This study investigates the role of serine/threonine protein kinase 25 (STK25), a member of the sterile 20 (STE20) superfamily of kinases, in the regulation of skeletal muscle metabolism. The effect of depleting STK25 in muscle cells was studied by reducing the mRNA and protein content of this target in the rat myoblast cell line L6 by small interfering (si)RNA. The changes in the mRNA and protein levels of several members of the fatty acid oxidative and glucose metabolic pathways were measured by quantitative real-time (qRT)-PCR and western blot. The rate of palmitate oxidation and glucose uptake was measured after transfection with siRNA for . Expression of was also evaluated in skeletal muscle biopsies from 41 white Europid men and women with normal and impaired glucose tolerance and type 2 diabetes using qRT-PCR. We demonstrate that partial depletion of STK25 increases the expression of uncoupling protein 3 (, accompanied by increased lipid oxidation, in myoblasts. In addition, a reduced level of STK25 enhances the expression of (also known as ), (also known as ) and hexokinase 2, and correspondingly, improves insulin-stimulated glucose uptake in muscle cells. Consistent with these results, significantly higher levels were observed in the skeletal muscle of type 2 diabetic patients, compared with individuals with normal glucose tolerance. This is the first study indicating a possible role for STK25 in the regulation of glucose and lipid metabolism in L6 myoblasts. This kinase appears to be an interesting new mediator to be evaluated for therapeutic intervention in type 2 diabetes and related complications, as controlled increase in lipid oxidation and insulin-stimulated glucose uptake in skeletal muscle is favourable and can restore energy balance in metabolically compromised states.

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