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Diabetes Care. 2008 Dec;31(12):2325-31. doi: 10.2337/dc07-2446.

Impaired hyperglycemia-induced delay in gastric emptying in patients with type 1 diabetes deficient for islet amyloid polypeptide.

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  • 1Department of Internal Medicine II, Grosshadern, Clinical Research Unit, Ludwig Maximilians University, Munich, Germany.



Slowing of gastric emptying by hyperglycemia, a physiological response to minimize postprandial hyperglycemia, may be impaired in patients with type 1 diabetes. The causes and consequences on glucose homeostasis are unknown.


Consequences of euglycemia- and hyperglycemia-induced changes in gastric emptying on postprandial glucose fluxes and excursions were studied in 10 healthy subjects and 15 type 1 diabetic subjects after ingestion of a mixed meal using the double isotope approach ([6,6-(2)H(2)] and [1-(13)C]glucose) and scintigraphic measurements of gastric emptying.


Gastric emptying was greater in type 1 diabetic subjects (90-120 min, P < 0.03), and 50% retention times were comparable in healthy subjects and type 1 diabetic subjects (167 +/- 8 vs. 152 +/- 10, P = 0.32). Hyperglycemia markedly delayed gastric emptying in healthy subjects but did not alter it in type 1 diabetic subjects (50% retention time 222 +/- 18 vs. 167 +/- 8 min, P = 0.003 and 148 +/- 9 vs. 152 +/- 10 min, P = 0.51). Plasma islet amyloid polypeptide (IAPP) increased approximately fourfold in healthy subjects (P < 0.001), whereas it was undetectable in type 1 diabetic subjects. IAPP replacement, using the analog pramlintide, in type 1 diabetic subjects slowed gastric emptying to a comparable extent, as did hyperglycemia in healthy subjects (P < 0.14), and greatly reduced postprandial hyperglycemia (P < 00.1). Meal-derived glucose appearance in plasma (10.7 +/- 0.5 vs. 6.8 +/- 0.7 mumol . kg(-1) . min(-1), P < 0.001) was reduced, and splanchnic glucose sequestration increased (14.0 +/- 3.0 vs. 25.0 +/- 6.0%, P = 0.04).


In patients with type 1 diabetes the ability to delay gastric emptying in response to hyperglycemia is impaired. This impairment contributes to exaggerated rates of meal-derived glucose appearance and, ultimately, postprandial glucose excursions.

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