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J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2003 Aug;88(8):3829-34.

Effect of lipase inhibition on gastric emptying of, and the glycemic and incretin responses to, an oil/aqueous drink in type 2 diabetes mellitus.

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  • 1University of Adelaide, Department of Medicine, Royal Adelaide Hospital, Adelaide, South Australia 5000, Australia.


This study examined the effects of the lipase inhibitor, orlistat, on gastric emptying of, and the glycemic and incretin hormone responses to, a drink containing oil and glucose components in patients with type 2 diabetes. Seven patients (aged 58 +/- 5 yr), managed by diet alone, consumed 60 ml olive oil (labeled with 20 MBq (99m)Tc-V-thiocyanate) and 300 ml water containing 75 g glucose (labeled with 6 MBq (67)Ga-EDTA), on two occasions, with and without 120 mg orlistat, positioned in the left lateral decubitus position with their back against a gamma camera. Venous blood samples, for measurement of blood glucose and plasma insulin, glucagon-like peptide-1 and glucose-dependent insulintropic polypeptide were obtained immediately before, and after, the drink. Gastric emptying of both oil (P < 0.001) and glucose (P < 0.0005) was faster after orlistat compared with control. Postprandial blood glucose (P < 0.001) and plasma insulin (P < 0.05) were substantially greater after orlistat compared with control. In contrast, plasma glucagon-like peptide-1 (P < 0.005) and glucose-dependent insulintropic polypeptide (P < 0.05) were less after orlistat. In conclusion, inhibition of fat digestion, by orlistat, may exacerbate postprandial glycemia, as a result of more rapid gastric emptying and a diminished incretin response.

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