Plasma glucagon consistently deregulated in T1D patients
Type 1 diabetes (T1D) patients experience a consistent dysregulation of plasma glucagon levels, a new Japan study has found.
The study included 77 T1D patients (mean age, 34.9±6.4 years; 67.5 percent female) whose plasma glucagon levels were measured from venous blood samples using dual-antibody sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Upon enrolment, the mean disease duration was 25.8±7.7 years, while the mean plasma glucagon concentration was 16.0±9.8 pg/mL.
Over two annual check-ups, plasma glucagon was significantly correlated with plasma glucose (r, 0.265; p=0.02), blood urea nitrogen (r, 0.325; p=0.004), alanine aminotransferase (r, 0.253; p=0.03), total cholesterol (r, 0.234; p=0.04) and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (r, 0.250; p=0.03).
No such relationships were documented for other clinical parameters tested, including glycated haemoglobin, creatinine, glycoalbumin, uric acid and gamma-glutamyltransferase, among others.
Subsequent multivariate logistic regression analysis found that of all the tested variables, only blood urea nitrogen was significantly correlated with blood glucagon (p=0.02).
Moreover, among those who had available data from two medical check-ups (n=66), plasma glucagon levels from the first visit were significantly correlated to measurements a year after (r, 0.407; p=0.007), though the mean concentration showed an overall decline (p<0.001).
“In the current study, we investigated the annual change in plasma glucagon levels in these same patients and found a significant correlation between measurements in both years,” said researchers, noting that glucagon similarly shared a significant relationship with BUN.
“These results suggest a potentially constant dysregulation of glucagon in association with altered amino acid metabolism in patients with T1D,” they added.