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Glucagon increases energy expenditure independently of brown adipose tissue activation in humans

Glucagon increases energy expenditure independently of brown adipose tissue activation in humans
Glucagon increases energy expenditure independently of brown adipose tissue activation in humans

Aims: To investigate, for a given energy expenditure (EE) rise, the differential effects of glucagon infusion and cold exposure on brown adipose tissue (BAT) activation in humans. Methods: Indirect calorimetry and supraclavicular thermography was performed in 11 healthy male volunteers before and after: cold exposure; glucagon infusion (at 23 °C); and vehicle infusion (at 23 °C). All volunteers underwent 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose (18F-FDG) positron emission tomography (PET)/CT scanning with cold exposure. Subjects with cold-induced BAT activation on 18F-FDG PET/CT (n = 8) underwent a randomly allocated second 18F-FDG PET/CT scan (at 23 °C), either with glucagon infusion (n = 4) or vehicle infusion (n = 4). Results: We observed that EE increased by 14% after cold exposure and by 15% after glucagon infusion (50 ng/kg/min; p < 0.05 vs control for both). Cold exposure produced an increase in neck temperature (+0.44 °C; p < 0.001 vs control), but glucagon infusion did not alter neck temperature. In subjects with a cold-induced increase in the metabolic activity of supraclavicular BAT on 18F-FDG PET/CT, a significant rise in the metabolic activity of BAT after glucagon infusion was not detected. Cold exposure increased sympathetic activation, as measured by circulating norepinephrine levels, but glucagon infusion did not. Conclusions: Glucagon increases EE by a similar magnitude compared with cold activation, but independently of BAT thermogenesis. This finding is of importance for the development of safe treatments for obesity through upregulation of EE.

F-FDG PET/CT, Energy expenditure, Glucagon, Human brown adipose tissue, Thermal imaging
1462-8902
72-81
Salem, V.
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Izzi-Engbeaya, C.
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Coello, C.
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Thomas, D. B.
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Chambers, E. S.
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Comninos, A. N.
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Buckley, A.
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Win, Z.
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Al-Nahhas, A.
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Rabiner, E. A.
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Gunn, R. N.
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Budge, H.
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Symonds, M. E.
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Bloom, S. R.
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Tan, T. M.
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Dhillo, W. S.
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Salem, V.
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Izzi-Engbeaya, C.
e850eb22-d4b3-4542-9e5b-3fc2b39c31af
Coello, C.
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Thomas, D. B.
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Chambers, E. S.
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Comninos, A. N.
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Buckley, A.
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Win, Z.
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Al-Nahhas, A.
501fee03-210c-4dfe-8999-834536bcca61
Rabiner, E. A.
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Gunn, R. N.
e134e55b-3096-4af4-9145-915cc1dcfb08
Budge, H.
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Symonds, M. E.
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Bloom, S. R.
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Tan, T. M.
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Dhillo, W. S.
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Salem, V., Izzi-Engbeaya, C., Coello, C., Thomas, D. B., Chambers, E. S., Comninos, A. N., Buckley, A., Win, Z., Al-Nahhas, A., Rabiner, E. A., Gunn, R. N., Budge, H., Symonds, M. E., Bloom, S. R., Tan, T. M. and Dhillo, W. S. (2015) Glucagon increases energy expenditure independently of brown adipose tissue activation in humans. Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism, 18 (1), 72-81. (doi:10.1111/dom.12585).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Aims: To investigate, for a given energy expenditure (EE) rise, the differential effects of glucagon infusion and cold exposure on brown adipose tissue (BAT) activation in humans. Methods: Indirect calorimetry and supraclavicular thermography was performed in 11 healthy male volunteers before and after: cold exposure; glucagon infusion (at 23 °C); and vehicle infusion (at 23 °C). All volunteers underwent 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose (18F-FDG) positron emission tomography (PET)/CT scanning with cold exposure. Subjects with cold-induced BAT activation on 18F-FDG PET/CT (n = 8) underwent a randomly allocated second 18F-FDG PET/CT scan (at 23 °C), either with glucagon infusion (n = 4) or vehicle infusion (n = 4). Results: We observed that EE increased by 14% after cold exposure and by 15% after glucagon infusion (50 ng/kg/min; p < 0.05 vs control for both). Cold exposure produced an increase in neck temperature (+0.44 °C; p < 0.001 vs control), but glucagon infusion did not alter neck temperature. In subjects with a cold-induced increase in the metabolic activity of supraclavicular BAT on 18F-FDG PET/CT, a significant rise in the metabolic activity of BAT after glucagon infusion was not detected. Cold exposure increased sympathetic activation, as measured by circulating norepinephrine levels, but glucagon infusion did not. Conclusions: Glucagon increases EE by a similar magnitude compared with cold activation, but independently of BAT thermogenesis. This finding is of importance for the development of safe treatments for obesity through upregulation of EE.

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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 29 September 2015
e-pub ahead of print date: 20 November 2015
Published date: 28 December 2015
Additional Information: Publisher Copyright: © 2016 John Wiley & Sons Ltd. Copyright: Copyright 2019 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.
Keywords: F-FDG PET/CT, Energy expenditure, Glucagon, Human brown adipose tissue, Thermal imaging

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 453690
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/453690
ISSN: 1462-8902
PURE UUID: a71b1537-170e-4872-b5ed-b632c1ce9f35
ORCID for D. B. Thomas: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-9671-0917

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Date deposited: 20 Jan 2022 17:46
Last modified: 10 Jun 2022 01:57

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Contributors

Author: V. Salem
Author: C. Izzi-Engbeaya
Author: C. Coello
Author: D. B. Thomas ORCID iD
Author: E. S. Chambers
Author: A. N. Comninos
Author: A. Buckley
Author: Z. Win
Author: A. Al-Nahhas
Author: E. A. Rabiner
Author: R. N. Gunn
Author: H. Budge
Author: M. E. Symonds
Author: S. R. Bloom
Author: T. M. Tan
Author: W. S. Dhillo

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