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F Richard, N Martinat, J-J Remy, R Salesse, and Y Combarnous


Among all mammalian FSH receptors (FSH-R; including donkey (dk) FSH-R), only horse (hs) FSH-R does not bind hsLH/chorionic gonadotrophin (CG). In order to delineate the structural origin of hsFSH-R specificity precisely, we have cloned dkFSH-R cDNA from donkey testis mRNA by RT-PCR. Transiently expressed dkFSH-R endowed COS-7 cells with both hsLH/CG- and FSH-binding activity, as well as FSH-induced cAMP production.

The deduced dkFSH-R amino acid sequence shares 96% identity with the hsFSH-R: notably, in the hormone-binding domain, the specificity of hsFSH-R may be ascribed to only four divergent amino acids: Thr 173, Asp 202, Asn 268 and Pro 322. Interestingly, hsAsn 268 could bear an additional N-glycosylation. According to receptor negative specificity, these amino acids could be implicated in preventing LH/CG binding to FSH-R.

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Darren S D Martin, Siobhán Leonard, Robert Devine, Clara Redondo, Gemma K Kinsella, Conor J Breen, Victoria McEneaney, Mary F Rooney, Tim S Munsey, Richard K Porter, Asipu Sivaprasadarao, John C Stephens, and John B C Findlay

Metformin is the main drug of choice for treating type 2 diabetes, yet the therapeutic regimens and side effects of the compound are all undesirable and can lead to reduced compliance. The aim of this study was to elucidate the mechanism of action of two novel compounds which improved glucose handling and weight gain in mice on a high-fat diet. Wildtype C57Bl/6 male mice were fed on a high-fat diet and treated with novel, anti-diabetic compounds. Both compounds restored the glucose handling ability of these mice. At a cellular level, these compounds achieve this by inhibiting complex I activity in mitochondria, leading to AMP-activated protein kinase activation and subsequent increased glucose uptake by the cells, as measured in the mouse C2C12 muscle cell line. Based on the inhibition of NADH dehydrogenase (IC50 27µmolL−1), one of these compounds is close to a thousand fold more potent than metformin. There are no indications of off target effects. The compounds have the potential to have a greater anti-diabetic effect at a lower dose than metformin and may represent a new anti-diabetic compound class. The mechanism of action appears not to be as an insulin sensitizer but rather as an insulin substitute.