Insulin resistance causes type 2 diabetes; therefore, increasing insulin sensitivity is a therapeutic approach against type 2 diabetes. Activating AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) is an effective approach for treating diabetes, and reduced insulin receptor substrate-1 (IRS-1) protein levels have been suggested as a molecular mechanism causing insulin resistance. Thus, dual targeting of AMPK and IRS-1 might provide an ideal way to treat diabetes. We found that 15,16-dihydrotanshinone I (DHTS), as a C1-Ten protein tyrosine phosphatase inhibitor, increased IRS-1 stability, improved glucose tolerance and reduced muscle atrophy. Identification of DHTS as a C1-Ten inhibitor revealed a new function of C1-Ten in AMPK inhibition, possibly through regulation of IRS-1. These findings suggest that C1-Ten inhibition by DHTS could provide a novel therapeutic strategy for insulin resistance-associated metabolic syndrome through dual targeting of IRS-1 and AMPK.
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