Hyperglycemia increases glucose concentrations in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), activating glucose-sensing mechanisms and feeding behavior in the hypothalamus. Here, we discuss how hyperglycemia temporarily modifies ependymal cell ciliary beating to increase hypothalamic glucose sensing. A high level of glucose in the rat CSF stimulates glucose transporter 2 (GLUT2)-positive subcommissural organ (SCO) cells to release SCO-spondin into the dorsal third ventricle. Genetic inactivation of mice GLUT2 decreases hyperglycemia-induced SCO-spondin secretion. In addition, SCO cells secrete Wnt5a-positive vesicles; thus, Wnt5a and SCO-spondin are found at the apex of dorsal ependymal cilia to regulate ciliary beating. Frizzled-2 and ROR2 receptors, as well as specific proteoglycans, such as glypican/testican (essential for the interaction of Wnt5a with its receptors) and Cx43 coupling, were also analyzed in ependymal cells. Finally, we propose that the SCO-spondin/Wnt5a/Frizzled-2/Cx43 axis in ependymal cells regulates ciliary beating, a cyclic and adaptive signaling mechanism to control glucose sensing.
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