Objective: To clarify the metabolic effects of an overnight i.v. infusion of unacylated ghrelin (UAG) in humans. UAG exerts relevant metabolic actions, likely mediated by a still unknown ghrelin receptor subtype, including effects on β-cell viability and function, insulin secretion and sensitivity, and glucose and lipid metabolism. Design: We studied the effects of a 16-h infusion (from 2100 to 1300 h) of UAG (1.0 μg/kg per h) or saline in eight normal subjects (age (mean±S.E.M.), 29.6±2.4 years; body mass index (BMI), 22.4±1.7 kg/m2), who were served, at 2100 and 0800 h respectively, with isocaloric balanced dinner and breakfast. Glucose, insulin, and free fatty acid (FFA) levels were measured every 20 min. Results: In comparison with saline, UAG induced significant (P<0.05) changes in glucose, insulin, and FFA profiles. UAG infusion decreased glucose area under the curve (AUC) values by 10% (UAG0-960 min: 79.0±1.7×10 3 mg/dl per min vs saline0-960 min: 87.5±3. 8×103 mg/dl per min) and the AUC at night by 14% (UAG 180-660 min: 28.4±0.5×103 mg/dl per min vs saline180-660 min: 33.2±1.1×103 mg/dl per min). The overall insulin AUC was not significantly modified by UAG infusion; however, insulin AUC observed after meals was significantly increased under the exposure to UAG with respect to saline at either dinner or breakfast. The FFA AUC values were decreased by 52% under the exposure to UAG in comparison with saline (UAG0-960 min: 0.3±0.02×103 mEq/l per min vs saline0-960 min: 0.6±0.05×103 mEq/l per min). Conclusions: Exposure to the i.v. administration of UAG improves glucose metabolism and inhibits lipolysis in healthy volunteers. Thus, in contrast to the diabetogenic action of AG, UAG displays hypoglycemic properties.

Additional Metadata
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1530/EJE-11-0982, hdl.handle.net/1765/73204
Journal European Journal of Endocrinology
Benso, A, St-Pierre, Y, Prodam, F, Gramaglia, E, Granata, R, van der Lely, A-J, … Broglio, F. (2012). Metabolic effects of overnight continuous infusion of unacylated ghrelin in humans. European Journal of Endocrinology, 166(5), 911–916. doi:10.1530/EJE-11-0982