Regulation of epidermal growth factor receptor number and phosphorylation by fasting in rat liver

G. R. Freidenberg, H. H. Klein, M. P. Kladde, R. Cordera, J. M. Olefsky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The binding of 125I-epidermal growth factor (EGF) to microsomal membrane preparations from the livers of rats fasted for 72 h or fed control or high carbohydrate diets was examined to determine whether alterations in nutrient intake could affect the EGF receptor system. Fasted rats had 40-50% less membrane binding than did not control or carbohydrate-fed rats. Scatchard analysis of the binding data indicated that the decrease in EGF binding in fasted rats was due to a decrease in receptor number with no change in receptor affinity. Cross-linking of 125I-EGF to EGF receptors with disuccinimidyl suberate revealed specific binding of a M(r) 170,000 protein, which was diminished by ~75% in fasting, and a M(r) = 150,000 protein, which accounted for 40-50% of the total labeling in the control and carbohydrate-fed rats and which was relatively unchanged by fasting. The sum of the labeling of the bands was reduced by ~40% in fasting and is consistent with the reduction in EGF binding detected by Scatchard analysis. EGF stimulated a 1.5-3-fold increase in 32P incorporated into major protein of 170 kDa in all 3 groups. Basal and EGF-stimulated autophosphorylation of 170 kDa, when normalized for protein, was 75% lower in membranes from fasted animals, compared to those from control or carbohydrate-fed rats. The comparable reduction of 125I-EGF binding to, and 32P incorporation into, the 170-kDa EGF receptor protein suggested that kinase activity/receptor was unaffected by fasting. Moreover, EGF receptor kinase activity in the 3 groups was comparable for an exogenous substrate, as judged by equal basal and EGF-stimulated phosphorylation of Val5-angiotensin II, when normalized for total EGF-binding capacity. These results suggest that fasting regulates EGF receptor kinase activity primarily by regulation of the number of hepatic EGF receptors. The possibility exists that some in vivo effects of fasting may be mediated by a reduction in EGF receptor levels.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)752-757
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1986

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry


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