BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: The imidazoline-type alpha2-adrenoceptor antagonists (+/-)-efaroxan and phentolamine increase insulin secretion and reduce blood glucose levels. It is not known whether they act by antagonizing pancreatic beta-cell alpha2-adrenoceptors or by alpha2-adrenoceptor-independent mechanisms. Many imidazolines inhibit the pancreatic beta-cell KATP channel, which is the molecular target of sulphonylurea drugs used in the treatment of type II diabetes. To investigate the mechanisms of action of (+/-)-efaroxan and phentolamine, alpha2A-adrenoceptor knockout (alpha2A-KO) mice were used.
EXPERIMENTAL APPROACH: Effects of (+/-)-efaroxan, 5 mg kg(-1), and phentolamine, 1 mg kg(-1), on blood glucose and insulin levels were compared with those of the non-imidazoline alpha2-adrenoceptor antagonist [8aR,12aS,13aS]-5,8,8a,9,10,11,12,12a,13,13a-decahydro-3-methoxy-12-(ethylsulphonyl)-6H-isoquino[2,1-g][1,6]naphthyridine (RS79948-197), 1 mg kg(-1), and the sulphonylurea glibenclamide, in alpha2A-KO and control (wild type (WT)) mice.
KEY RESULTS: In fed WT mice, (+/-)-efaroxan, phentolamine and RS79948-197 reduced blood glucose and increased insulin levels. Fasting abolished these effects. In fed alpha2A-KO mice, (+/-)-efaroxan, phentolamine and RS79948-197 did not alter blood glucose or insulin levels, and in fasted alpha2A-KO mice, blood glucose levels were increased. Glibenclamide, at a dose only moderately efficacious in WT mice (5 mg kg(-1)), caused severe hyperinsulinaemia and hypoglycaemia in alpha2A-KO mice. This was mimicked in WT mice by co-administration of RS79948-197 with glibenclamide.
CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS: These results suggest that (+/-)-efaroxan and phentolamine increase insulin secretion by inhibition of beta-cell alpha2A-adrenoceptors, and demonstrate a critical role for alpha2A-adrenoceptors in limiting sulphonylurea-induced hyperinsulinaemia and hypoglycaemia.
|Number of pages||10|
|Journal||British Journal of Pharmacology|
|Publication status||Published - Jul 2008|
|MoE publication type||A1 Journal article-refereed|
- Adrenergic alpha-2 Receptor Antagonists
- Adrenergic alpha-Antagonists/pharmacology
- Adrenergic beta-Antagonists/pharmacology
- Atropine Derivatives/pharmacology
- Blood Glucose/metabolism
- Drug Synergism
- Hypoglycemic Agents/pharmacology
- Insulin Secretion
- Mice, Inbred C57BL
- Mice, Knockout
- Muscarinic Antagonists/pharmacology
- Receptors, Adrenergic, alpha-2/genetics