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Eva Degerman

Eva Degerman

Research team manager

Eva Degerman

Role of phosphodiesterases in the shaping of sub-plasma-membrane cAMP oscillations and pulsatile insulin secretion


  • Geng Tian
  • Jenny Sagetorp
  • Yunjian Xu
  • Hongyan Shuai
  • Eva Degerman
  • Anders Tengholm

Summary, in English

Specificity and versatility in cyclic AMP (cAMP) signalling are governed by the spatial localisation and temporal dynamics of the signal. Phosphodiesterases (PDEs) are important for shaping cAMP signals by hydrolyzing the nucleotide. In pancreatic beta-cells, glucose triggers sub-plasma-membrane cAMP oscillations, which are important for insulin secretion, but the mechanisms underlying the oscillations are poorly understood. Here, we investigated the role of different PDEs in the generation of cAMP oscillations by monitoring the concentration of cAMP in the sub-plasma-membrane space ([cAMP](pm)) with ratiometric evanescent wave microscopy in MIN6 cells or mouse pancreatic beta-cells expressing a fluorescent translocation biosensor. The general PDE inhibitor IBMX increased [cAMP](pm), and whereas oscillations were frequently observed at 50 mu M IBMX, 300 mu M-1 mM of the inhibitor caused a stable increase in [cAMP](pm). The [cAMP](pm) was nevertheless markedly suppressed by the adenylyl cyclase inhibitor 2',5'-dideoxyadenosine, indicating IBMX-insensitive cAMP degradation. Among IBMX-sensitive PDEs, PDE3 was most important for maintaining a low basal level of [cAMP](pm) in unstimulated cells. After glucose induction of [cAMP](pm) oscillations, inhibitors of PDE1, PDE3 and PDE4 inhibitors the average cAMP level, often without disturbing the [cAMP](pm) rhythmicity. Knockdown of the IBMX-insensitive PDE8B by shRNA in MIN6 cells increased the basal level of [cAMP](pm) and prevented the [cAMP](pm)-lowering effect of 2',5'-dideoxyadenosine after exposure to IBMX. Moreover, PDE8B-knockdown cells showed reduced glucose-induced [cAMP](pm) oscillations and loss of the normal pulsatile pattern of insulin secretion. It is concluded that [cAMP](pm) oscillations in beta-cells are caused by periodic variations in cAMP generation, and that several PDEs, including PDE1, PDE3 and the IBMX-insensitive PDE8B, are required for shaping the sub-membrane cAMP signals and pulsatile insulin release.


  • Insulin Signal Transduction
  • EXODIAB: Excellence of Diabetes Research in Sweden

Publishing year







Journal of Cell Science





Document type

Journal article


The Company of Biologists Ltd


  • Endocrinology and Diabetes


  • Islets
  • Pancreatic beta-cells
  • Adenylyl cyclase
  • PDE3
  • PDE8
  • PDE4
  • PDE1



Research group

  • Insulin Signal Transduction


  • ISSN: 0021-9533