RFamide peptides 43RFa and 26RFa have been shown to promote food intake and to exert different peripheral actions through G-protein-coupled receptor 103 (GPR103) binding. Moreover, 26RFa was found to inhibit pancreatic insulin secretion, whereas the role of 43RFa on β-cell function is unknown, as well as the effects of both peptides on β-cell survival. Herein, we investigated the effects of 43RFa and 26RFa on survival and apoptosis of pancreatic β-cells and human pancreatic islets. In addition, we explored the role of these peptides on insulin secretion and the underlying signaling mechanisms. Our results show that in INS-1E β-cells and human pancreatic islets both 43RFa and 26RFa prevented cell death and apoptosis induced by serum starvation, cytokine synergism, and glucolipotoxicity, through phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase/Akt- and extracellular signal-related kinase 1/2-mediated signaling. Moreover, 43RFa promoted, whereas 26RFa inhibited, glucose- and exendin-4-induced insulin secretion, through Gαs and Gαi/o proteins, respectively. Inhibition of GPR103 expression by small interfering RNA blocked 43RFa insulinotropic effect, but not the insulinostatic action of 26RFa. Finally, 43RFa, but not 26RFa, induced cAMP increase and glucose uptake. In conclusion, because of their survival effects along with the effects on insulin secretion, these findings suggest potential for 43RFa and 26RFa as therapeutic targets in the treatment of diabetes.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Internal Medicine
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism