Send to

Choose Destination
J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2001 Aug;86(8):3724-8.

Acute insulin responses to leucine in children with the hyperinsulinism/hyperammonemia syndrome.

Author information

Division of Endocrinology, The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, and Department of Pediatrics, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104, USA.


Mutations of glutamate dehydrogenase cause the hyperinsulinism/hyperammonemia syndrome by desensitizing glutamate dehydrogenase to allosteric inhibition by GTP. Normal allosteric activation of glutamate dehydrogenase by leucine is thus uninhibited, leading us to propose that children with hyperinsulinism/hyperammonemia syndrome will have exaggerated acute insulin responses to leucine in the postabsorptive state. As hyperglycemia increases beta-cell GTP, we also postulated that high glucose concentrations would extinguish abnormal responsiveness to leucine in hyperinsulinism/hyperammonemia syndrome patients. After an overnight fast, seven hyperinsulinism/hyperammonemia syndrome patients (aged 9 months to 29 yr) had acute insulin responses to leucine performed using an iv bolus of L-leucine (15 mg/kg) administered over 1 min and plasma insulin measurements obtained at -10, -5, 0, 1, 3, and 5 min. The acute insulin response to leucine was defined as the mean increase in insulin from baseline at 1 and 3 min after an iv leucine bolus. The hyperinsulinism/hyperammonemia syndrome group had excessively increased insulin responses to leucine (mean +/- SEM, 73 +/- 21 microIU/ml) compared with the control children and adults (n = 17) who had no response to leucine (1.9 +/- 2.7 microU/ml; P < 0.05). Four hyperinsulinism/hyperammonemia syndrome patients then had acute insulin responses to leucine repeated at hyperglycemia (blood glucose, 150-180 mg/dl). High blood glucose suppressed their abnormal baseline acute insulin responses to leucine of 180, 98, 47, and 28 microU/ml to 73, 0, 6, and 19 microU/ml, respectively. This suppression suggests that protein-induced hypoglycemia in hyperinsulinism/hyperammonemia syndrome patients may be prevented by carbohydrate loading before protein consumption.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Silverchair Information Systems Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center