c-Myc is required for the glucose-mediated induction of metabolic enzyme genes

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Glucose exerts powerful effects on hepatocyte gene transcription by mechanisms that are incompletely understood. c-Myc regulates hepatic glucose metabolism by increasing glycolytic enzyme gene transcription while concomitantly decreasing gluconeogenic and ketogenic enzyme gene expression. However, the molecular mechanisms by which c-Myc exerts these effects is not known. In this study, the glucose-mediated induction of L-type pyruvate kinase and glucose-6-phosphatase mRNA levels was diminished by maneuvers involving recombinant adenoviral vectors that interfere with (i) c-Myc protein levels by antisense expression or (ii) c-Myc function through a dominant-negative Max protein. These results were obtained using both HL1C rat hepatoma cells and primary rat hepatocytes. Furthermore, a decrease in c-Myc abundance reduced glucose production in HL1C cells, presumably by decreasing glucose-6-phosphatase activity. The repression of hormone-activated phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase gene transcription by glucose was not affected by a reduction in c-Myc levels. The basal mRNA levels for L-pyruvate kinase and glucose-6-phosphatase were not altered to any significant degree by adenoviral treatment. Furthermore, adenoviral overexpression of the c-Myc protein induced glucose-6-phosphatase mRNA in the absence of glucose stimulation. We conclude that multiple mechanisms exist to communicate the glucose-derived signal and that c-Myc has a key role in the hepatic glucose signaling pathway.

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The Journal of biological chemistry

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