Human diabetes associated with a deletion of the tyrosine kinase domain of the insulin receptor

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Science  07 Jul 1989:
Vol. 245, Issue 4913, pp. 63-66
DOI: 10.1126/science.2544997


The insulin receptor has an intrinsic tyrosine kinase activity that is essential for signal transduction. A mutant insulin receptor gene lacking almost the entire kinase domain has been identified in an individual with type A insulin resistance and acanthosis nigricans. Insulin binding to the erythrocytes or cultured fibroblasts from this individual was normal. However receptor autophosphorylation and tyrosine kinase activity toward an exogenous substrate were reduced in partially purified insulin receptors from the proband's lymphocytes that had been transformed by Epstein-Barr virus. The insulin resistance associated with this mutated gene was inherited by the proband from her mother as an apparently autosomal dominant trait. Thus a deletion in one allele of the insulin receptor gene may be at least partly responsible for some instances of insulin-resistant diabetes.

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