Demonstration that the insulin receptor undergoes an early structural modification following insulin binding.
Processing of the insulin receptor by hepatocytes was studied using a 125I-labelled photoreactive insulin derivative which could be covalently attached to the receptor and facilitate the analysis of receptor structure in isolated subcellular fractions by SDS-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Following binding at the cell surface, the label was rapidly internalised and located in a low-density subcellular fraction ('endosomes'). The intact receptor (350 000 molecular weight) and binding (alpha) subunit (135 000), produced by in vitro disulphide reduction of the samples, were found in the plasma membrane fraction but not in endosomes. In endosomes, the label was concentrated in a band at 140 000 (non-reduced) which on reduction generated species of 100 000 and 68 000 predominantly. The insulin receptor therefore undergoes an early structural change during endocytosis. This modification does not involve complete disulphide reduction and may be due to a proteolytic event.
Juul, SM; Neffe, J; Evans, JL; Jones, RH; Sönksen, PH; Brandenburg, D
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