Semicarbazide-sensitive amine oxidase substrates stimulate glucose transport and inhibit lipolysis in human adipocytes

Nathalie Morin, Jose Miguel Lizcano, Emi Fontana, Luc Marti, Fatima Smih, Philippe Rouet, Danielle Prévot, Antonio Zorzano, Mercedes Unzeta, Christian Carpéné

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112 Citations (Scopus)


Semicarbazide-sensitive amine oxidases (SSAO) are widely distributed enzymes scavenging biogenic or exogenous amines and generating hydrogen peroxide. We asked whether human adipose tissue could express SSAO. Since hydrogen peroxide exhibits pharmacological insulin-like effects, we also tested whether its endogenous production by SSAO could mimic several insulin effects on adipocytes, such as stimulation of glucose uptake and inhibition of lipolysis. The benzylamine oxidation by human adipose tissue was inhibited by semicarbazide or hydralazine and resistant to pargyline or selegiline. It was due to an SSAO activity localized in adipocyte membranes. A protein of 100-kDa and a 4-kb mRNA corresponding to SSAO were identified in either mammary or abdominal subcutaneous fat depots. In isolated adipocytes, SSAO oxidized similarly benzylamine and methylamine that dose dependently stimulated glucose transport in a semicarbazide-sensitive manner. Anti-oxidants also inhibited the benzylamine and methylamine effects. Moreover, the ability of diverse substrates to be oxidized by adipocytes was correlated to their effect on glucose transport. Benzylamine and methylamine exerted antilipolytic effects with a maximum attained at 1 mM. These results show that human adipocytes express a membrane-bound SSAO that not only readily oxidizes exogenous amines and generates H2O2, but that also interplays with glucose and lipid metabolism by exerting insulin-like actions. Based on these results and the fact that variations in plasma levels of the soluble form of SSAO have been previously reported in diabetes, we propose that determination of adipocyte SSAO, feasible on subcutaneous microbiopsies, could bring relevant information in pathologies such as obesity or diabetes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)563-572
JournalJ. Pharmacol. Exp. Ther.
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 8 May 2001


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