Psychological stress impairs Na+-dependent glucose absorption and increases GLUT2 expression in the rat jejunal brush-border membrane
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Chronic psychological stress impacts many functions of the gastrointestinal tract. However, the effect of stress on nutrient absorption is poorly documented. This study was designed to investigate glucose transporters in rats submitted to different periods of water-avoidance stress (WAS). Rats were subjected to WAS (1 h/day) for 1, 5, or 10 consecutive days. Four hours after the last WAS session, rats were killed and segments of jejunum were mounted in Ussing chambers to study electrophysiological properties of the jejunum and Na+-dependent glucose absorption kinetics. Mucosa was obtained to prepare brush-border membrane vesicles (BBMV) used to measure [14C]fructose uptake as well as sodium-glucose transporter 1 (SGLT-1) and GLUT2 expression by Western blot analysis. Exposure of animals to WAS induced a decrease in Na+-dependent glucose absorption Vmax after 1, 5, and 10 days without any change in SGLT-1 expression. Potential difference across the jejunum was decreased for all stressed groups. Furthermore, we observed an increase in phloretin-sensitive uptake of [14C]fructose by BBMV after 1, 5, or 10 days of WAS, which was not present in control animals. This suggested the abnormal appearance of GLUT2 in the brush border, which was confirmed by Western blot analysis. We concluded that psychological stress induces major changes in glucose transport with a decrease in Na+-dependent glucose absorption and an increase in GLUT2 expression at the brush-border membrane level.
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