Novel effects of Brefeldin A (BFA) in signaling through the insulin receptor (IR) pathway and regulating FoxO1-mediated transcription.

Academic Article


  • Brefeldin A (BFA) is a fungal metabolite best known for its ability to inhibit activation of ADP-ribosylation factor (Arf) and thereby inhibit secretory traffic. BFA also appears to regulate the trafficking of the GLUT4 glucose transporter by inducing its relocation from intracellular stores to the cell surface. Such redistribution of GLUT4 is normally regulated by insulin-mediated signaling. Hence, we tested whether BFA may intersect with the insulin pathway. We report that BFA causes the activation of the insulin receptor (IR), IRS-1, Akt-2, and AS160 components of the insulin pathway. The response is mediated through phosphoinositol-3-kinase (PI3K) and Akt kinase since the PI3K inhibitor wortmannin and the Akt inhibitors MK2206 and perifosine inhibit the BFA effect. BFA-mediated activation of the insulin pathway results in Akt-mediated phosphorylation of the insulin-responsive transcription factor FoxO1. This leads to nuclear exclusion of FoxO1 and a decrease in transcription of the insulin-responsive gene SIRT-1. Our findings suggest novel effects for BFA in signaling and transcription, and imply that BFA has multiple intracellular targets and can be used to regulate diverse cellular responses that include vesicular trafficking, signaling and transcription.
  • Published In

  • Cellular Logistics  Journal
  • Keywords

  • Brefeldin A (BFA), FoxO1, GLUT4, SIRT-1, insulin pathway, intracellular trafficking
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Wyrozumska P; Ashley JW; Ramanadham S; Liu Q; Garvey WT; Sztul E
  • Start Page

  • e27732
  • Volume

  • 4
  • Issue

  • 1