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Exp Clin Endocrinol Diabetes. 2012 Sep;120(8):445-50. doi: 10.1055/s-0032-1311642. Epub 2012 May 25.

Effects of supervised exercise on gamma-glutamyl transferase levels in patients with isolated impaired fasting glucose and those with impaired fasting glucose plus impaired glucose tolerance.

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Department of Sport Science, Medical Section, University of Innsbruck, Austria.



To study the effects of a supervised exercise program on serum gamma-glutamyl transferase (GGT), glycemic control and cardiovascular risk factors in pre-diabetic patients with isolated impaired fasting glucose (IFG) and those with IFG plus impaired glucose tolerance (IGT).


Out of 60 pre-diabetic patients (30 with isolated IFG and 30 with IFG + IGT) 24 were randomly assigned to the supervised exercise program (1 h twice a week) and 36 only obtained counselling on the risk of diabetes and its prevention. Patients have been followed over a 12-month period.


The main findings were that patients with IFG + IGT had increased GGT levels at baseline (49.2±27.4 U/L) compared to subjects with isolated IFG (28.1±21.9 U/L) (p<0.01), and that GGT levels improved only after the supervised exercise intervention within the IFG + IGT subjects ( - 17.7±19.6 U/L). Similarly, baseline triglyceride levels were also higher in IFG + IGT patients (p<0.001) and there was a decrease through exercise intervention in these patients only (p<0.05).


GGT is an unspecific marker of oxidative stress and both high plasma glucose and triglycerides levels may produce oxidative stress. Thus, patients with IFG + IGT seem to have higher levels of oxidative stress than those with isolated IFG. Based on the known association between GGT levels and cardiovascular risk factors, IFG + IGT patients may be at higher risk for the development of cardiovascular diseases. The specific effect of regular exercise on GGT in pre-diabetic patients may contribute to the understanding of the preventive effects related to exercise.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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