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Nasal insulin administration does not affect hepatic glucose production at systemic fasting insulin levels

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


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AIMS: To evaluate the effects of brain insulin on endogenous glucose production in fasting humans, with a focus on hepatic glucose release by performing a randomized, placebo-controlled, blinded, crossover experiment.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: On two separate days, 2 H2 -glucose was infused to nine healthy lean men, and blood was sampled from the hepatic vein and a radial artery. On day 1, participants received 160 U human insulin through nasal spray, and on day 2 they received placebo spray, together with an intravenous insulin bolus to mimic spillover of nasal insulin to the circulation. Hepatic glucose fluxes and endogenous glucose production were calculated.

RESULTS: Plasma insulin concentrations were similar on the two study days, and no differences in whole-body endogenous glucose production or hepato-splanchnic glucose turnover were detected.

CONCLUSIONS: Nasal administration of insulin does not influence whole-body or hepatic glucose production in fasting humans. By contrast, pharmacological delivery of insulin to the brain might modulate insulin effectiveness in glucose-producing tissue when circulating insulin levels are elevated; therefore, the metabolic consequences of brain insulin action appear to be dependent on metabolic prandial status.

Original languageEnglish
JournalDiabetes, Obesity and Metabolism
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)993-1000
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 2019

    Research areas

  • basal insulin, clinical physiology, liver

ID: 56502264