4-Methylcatechol stimulates apoptosis and reduces insulin secretion by decreasing betacellulin and inhibin beta-A in INS-1 beta-cells

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Insulinoma INS-1 cell line is a pancreatic beta cell tumor which is characterized with high insulin content and secretion in response to increasing glucose levels. 4-Methylcatechol (4-MC) is a metabolite of quercetin, which is known as a potential drug for inhibition of tumorigenesis. The aim of this study was to determine the applying doses of 4-methylcatechol (4-MC) for triggening cell death and decreasing the cell function of rat insulinoma INS-1 beta cells. The rate of apoptosis and the amount of insulin in the cell and the secretions were determined by the ELISA method. Betacellulin (BTC) and inhibin beta-A amounts in both the cell and the glucose induced secretion were investigated by Western blotting. Furthermore, BTC, Inhibin beta-A, Ins1, Ins2, and GLUT2 gene expression levels were determined by the by the real-time quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) method. We noted a significant decrease in cell viability, while an increase in apoptotic cell death by 4-MC treatment. It caused a decrease in the secretion of BTC, expressions of both BTC and inhibin beta-A. We showed a decrease in the expressions of Ins1 and GLUT2, while there is no alteration in the level of insulin protein. Insulin secretion levels increased in INS-1 cells given 4-MC by basal glucose concentration while they did not response to high concentration of glucose, which indicates that 4-MC disrupts the functionality of INS-1 cells. These results revealed that 4-MC induces apoptosis and decreases insulin secretion by reducing BTC and inhibin beta-A in insulinoma INS-1 cells. Thus, 4-MC may be offered as a potential molecule for treatment of insulinoma.

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