Exogenous insulin enhances glucose-stimulated insulin response in healthy humans independent of changes in free fatty acids

Ximena Lopez, Aaron Cypess, Raquel Manning, Sheila O'Shea, Rohit N. Kulkarni, Allison B. Goldfine

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Context: Islet β-cells express both insulin receptors and insulin signaling proteins. Recent studies suggest insulin signaling is physiologically important for glucose sensing. Objective: Preexposure to insulin enhances glucose-stimulated insulin secretion (GSIS) in healthy humans. We evaluated whether the effect of insulin to potentiate GSIS is modulated through regulation of free fatty acids (FFA). Design and Setting: Subjects were studied on three occasions in this single-site study at an academic institution clinical research center. Patients: Subjects included nine healthy volunteers. Interventions: Glucose-induced insulin response was assessed on three occasions after 4 h saline (low insulin/sham) or isoglycemic-hyperinsulinemic (high insulin) clamps with or without intralipid and heparin infusion, using B28 Asp-insulin that could be distinguished from endogenous insulin immunologically. During the last 80 min of all three clamps, additional glucose was administered to stimulate insulin secretion (GSIS) with glucose concentrations maintained at similar concentrations during all studies. Main Outcome Measure: β-Cell response to glucose stimulation was assessed. Results: Preexposure to exogenous insulin increased the endogenous insulin-secretory response to glucose by 32% compared with sham clamp (P = 0.001). This was accompanied by a drop in FFA during hyperinsulinemic clamp compared with the sham clamp (0.06 ± 0.02 vs. 0.60 ± 0.09 mEq/liter, respectively), which was prevented during the hyperinsulinemic clamp with intralipid/heparin infusion (1.27 ± 0.17 mEq/liter). After preexposure to insulin with intralipid/heparin infusion to maintain FFA concentration, GSIS was 21% higher compared with sham clamp (P < 0.04) and similar to preexposure to insulin without intralipid/heparin (P = 0.2). Conclusions: Insulin potentiates glucose-stimulated insulin response independent of FFA concentrations in healthy humans.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3811-3821
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Biochemistry
  • Endocrinology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Biochemistry, medical


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