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Effect Of Infusion Of Insulin Into Portal Vein On Hepatic Extraction Of Insulin In Anesthetized Dogs

PE Harding, G Bloom, JB Field

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Hepatic extraction of insulin was examined in anesthetized dogs before and after constant infusion of insulin (20 and 50 mU/min) with use of samples from the portal vein, mesenteric vein, left common hepatic vein, and the femoral artery. In 19 dogs, measurement of portal vein insulin concentration indicated an overall recovery of 110% of the insulin infused. The range varied from 9 to 303%, indicating the potential for serious error in sampling the portal vein. Equilibrium arterial insulin concentrations were achieved 20 min after starting the infusion. Prior to insulin infusion, hepatic extraction of insulin averaged 4.56 plus or minus 0.43 mUmin, representing an extraction coefficient of 0.42 of the insulin presented to the liver. The proportion of insulin extracted by the liver did not change significantly during insulin infusion despite a 10-fold increase in portal vein insulin concentrations. During the infusion of insulin, a significant proportion of the extraheptic clearance of insulin occurred in the mesenteric circulation. Infusion of insulin was associated with a significant increase in insulin extraction by tissues other than the liver and splanchnic beds. Initially, hepatic glucose output average 36 plus or minus 3 mg/min; by 20 min after insulin infusion, it was 16 plus or minus 5 mg/min. Despite continuation of insulin infusion, hepatic glucose output returned to control values even though arterial glucose concentration continued to fall. Hepatic glucose output increased with termination of insulin infusion.