Insulin and glucagon degradation in liver are not affected by hepatic cirrhosis

Salvatore Antoniello, Sebastiano La Rocca, Ernesta Cavalcanti, Maria Auletta, Francesco Salvatore, Luigi Cacciatore

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Hyperinsulinemia and impaired glucose tolerance are associated with liver cirrhosis. To investigate whether insulin-degrading activity in liver tissue plays a role in hyperinsulinemia, we assayed this activity in biopsy tissue from healthy and cirrhotic subjects. There was no difference in insulin degradation between these two groups. Also glucagon-degrading activity in liver tissue, which is catalyzed by the same enzyme as insulin-degrading activity, did not differ between the two groups studied. Therefore, insulin-degrading activity does not appear to be involved in the hyperinsulinemia that occurs in liver cirrhosis. The study provides indirect evidence that hyperinsulinemia and impaired glucose metabolism in liver cirrhosis are due to different mechanisms (receptorial and post-receptorial defects, and altered feedback inhibition of insulin secretion).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)343-350
Number of pages8
JournalClinica Chimica Acta
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Aug 31 1989


  • Glucagon
  • Impaired glucose tolerance
  • Insulin
  • Liver cirrhosis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Clinical Biochemistry

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