Melatonin alleviates insulin resistance through the PI3K/AKT signaling pathway in ovary granulosa cells of polycystic ovary syndrome.Reprod Biol. 2022 Mar; 22(1):100594.RB
Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a common endocrine gynecological disorder. Insulin resistance (IR) is a major cause of PCOS. Melatonin, a critical endogenous hormone, has beneficial effects on the female reproductive system. This study aims to investigate the molecular effect of melatonin on IR in human ovarian granulosa cells (GCs). Hormone levels of the subjects were determined through clinical examination. The expression levels of insulin receptor substrate (IRS)-1 and glucose transporter (GLUT4) in GCs from PCOS patients and a human granulosa cell line (SVOG) were examined using qRT-PCR and western blot. The IR cell model was established by inducing SVOG cells with palmitic acid (PA). IR was detected in GCs of PCOS patients and SVOG by measuring glucose content and glucose uptake. Cell viability and apoptosis levels were detected by CCK-8 assay and flow cytometry. PI3K/Akt pathway expression in SVOG was assessed by western blot. PCOS patients had higher levels of luteinizing hormone (LH), testosterone, and LH/follicle-stimulating hormone. PA decreased cell viability, promoted apoptosis, and reduced glucose uptake in SVOG cells. IRS-1 and GLUT4 mRNA and protein expression was downregulated, and glucose uptake capacity was reduced in PCOS GCs and SVOG cells. Melatonin significantly upregulated IRS-1 and GLUT4 expression, downregulated p-IRS-1 (Ser307), and improved glucose uptake in PCOS patients' GCs and SVOG cells. PA decreased PI3K and Akt phosphorylation, whereas melatonin increased p-PI3K and p-Akt levels. Melatonin can reduce IR in GCs and PA-induced SVOG cells via the PI3K/Akt signaling pathway, providing more evidence for treating polycystic ovary syndrome.