Vasohibin-1 (Vash1), originally isolated as an endothelium-derived angiogenesis inhibitor, has a characteristic of promoting stress tolerance in endothelial cells (ECs). We therefore speculated that the lack of the vash1 gene would result in a short lifespan. However, to our surprise, vash1-/- mice lived significantly longer with a milder senescence phenotype than wild-type (WT) mice. We sought the cause of this healthy longevity and found that vash1-/- mice exhibited mild insulin resistance along with reduced expression of the insulin receptor (insr), insulin receptor substrate 1 (irs-1), and insulin receptor substrate 2 (irs-2) in their white adipose tissue (WAT) but not in their liver or skeletal muscle. The expression of vash1 dominated in the WAT among those 3 organs. Importantly, vash1-/- mice did not develop diabetes even when fed a high-fat diet. These results indicate that the expression of vash1 was required for the normal insulin sensitivity of the WAT and that the target molecules for this activity were insr, irs1, and irs2. The lack of vash1 caused mild insulin resistance without the outbreak of overt diabetes and might contribute to healthy longevity.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Geriatrics and Gerontology