Enzymatic activity of glucokinase was demonstrated, quantitated, and characterized kinetically in rat and mouse pituitary extracts using a highly specific and sensitive spectrometric assay. A previously proposed hypothesis that the glucokinase gene might be expressed in the pituitary corticotrophic cells was therefore reexamined using mRNA in situ hybridization and immunohistochemical techniques. No evidence was found that corticotrophs are glucokinase positive, and the identity of glucokinase-expressing cells remains to be determined. The findings do, however, suggest a novel hypothesis that a critical subgroup of anterior pituitary cells might function as glucose sensor cells and that direct fuel regulation of such cells may modify the classical indirect neuroendocrine pathways that are known to control hormone secretion from anterior pituitary cells.
- GKA, glucokinase activator
- GST, glutathione S-transferase
- POMC, proopiomelanocortin
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Internal Medicine
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism