Send to

Choose Destination
Clin Endocrinol (Oxf). 2009 Oct;71(4):500-6. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2265.2008.03510.x. Epub 2008 Dec 15.

No increased risk of hypoglycaemic episodes during 48 h of subcutaneous glucagon-like-peptide-1 administration in fasting healthy subjects.

Author information

Institute of Pharmacology, University of Aarhus, University Park 1240, Aarhus C, Denmark.



It is uncertain whether the ability to avoid hypoglycaemia during fasting is preserved, and the risk of reactive hypoglycaemia after an oral glucose stimulus following a prolonged fasting period is increased at augmented glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) levels.


A randomized, double-blind placebo-controlled cross-over study in eight healthy men to assess the safety, in terms of hypoglycaemia, of a continuously infused pharmacological dose of native GLP-1 during long-term fasting. After an overnight fast the fasting period continued for 48 h and was followed by a 3-h oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT). GLP-1(7-36 amide) or placebo was continuously infused subcutaneously and titrated to a dose of 4.8 pmol/kg per min.


Two subjects in the GLP-1 group and one subject in the placebo group were withdrawn due to protocol specified plasma glucose (PG) < or = 2.8 mm and neuroglycopaenic symptoms. The infusion of GLP-1 resulted in pharmacological levels of intact GLP-1. During the fasting period PG, insulin and C-peptide levels declined and glucagon, GH and free fatty acid (FFA) levels increased with no differences between GLP-1 and placebo. During OGTT circulating levels of insulin and C-peptide were higher with GLP-1 infusion. However, PG was similar during GLP-1 vs. placebo infusions. GLP-1 infusion increased norepinephrine and cortisol levels during OGTT.


The counter-regulatory response during 48 h of subcutaneous GLP-1 infusion was preserved despite long-term fasting with no apparent increased risk of hypoglycaemic episodes. No reactive hypoglycaemia was observed when the fast was followed by an OGTT. Thus use of long-acting GLP-1 analogues may not increase the risk of hypoglycaemia.


[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wiley
Loading ...
Support Center