Regulation of age-associated insulin resistance by MT1-MMP-mediated cleavage of insulin receptor

Xuanming Guo, Pallavi Asthana, Susma Gurung, Shuo Zhang, Sheung Kin Ken Wong, Samane Fallah, Chi Fung Willis Chow, Sijia Che, Lixiang Zhai, Zening Wang, Xin Ge, Zhixin Jiang, Jiayan Wu, Yijing Zhang, Xiaoyu Wu, Keyang Xu, Cheng Yuan Lin, Hiu Yee Kwan, Aiping Lyu, Zhongjun ZhouZhao Xiang Bian*, Hoi Leong Xavier Wong*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)


Insulin sensitivity progressively declines with age. Currently, the mechanism underlying age-associated insulin resistance remains unknown. Here, we identify membrane-bound matrix metalloproteinase 14 (MT1-MMP/MMP14) as a central regulator of insulin sensitivity during ageing. Ageing promotes MMP14 activation in insulin-sensitive tissues, which cleaves Insulin Receptor to suppress insulin signaling. MT1-MMP inhibition restores Insulin Receptor expression, improving insulin sensitivity in aged mice. The cleavage of Insulin Receptor by MT1-MMP also contributes to obesity-induced insulin resistance and inhibition of MT1-MMP activities normalizes metabolic dysfunctions in diabetic mouse models. Conversely, overexpression of MT1-MMP in the liver reduces the level of Insulin Receptor, impairing hepatic insulin sensitivity in young mice. The soluble Insulin Receptor and circulating MT1-MMP are positively correlated in plasma from aged human subjects and non-human primates. Our findings provide mechanistic insights into regulation of insulin sensitivity during physiological ageing and highlight MT1-MMP as a promising target for therapeutic avenue against diabetes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3749
Number of pages10
JournalNature Communications
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 29 Jun 2022

Scopus Subject Areas

  • General
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Regulation of age-associated insulin resistance by MT1-MMP-mediated cleavage of insulin receptor'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this