Aims: Our objective was to investigate whether improved in vivo mitochondrial function in skeletal muscle and intramyocellular lipids (IMCLs) contribute to the insulin-sensitizing effect of rosiglitazone.
Methods: Eight overweight type 2 diabetic patients (body mass index = 29.3 +/- 1.1 kg/m(2)) were treated with rosiglitazone for 8 wk. Before and after treatment, insulin sensitivity was determined by a hyperinsulinemic euglycemic clamp. Muscular mitochondrial function (half-time of phosphocreatine recovery after exercise) and IMCL content were measured by magnetic resonance spectroscopy.
Results: Insulin sensitivity improved after rosiglitazone (glucose infusion rate: 19.9 +/- 2.8 to 24.8 +/- 2.1 micromol/kg.min; P < 0.05). In vivo mitochondrial function (phosphocreatine recovery half-time: 23.8 +/- 3.5 to 20.0 +/- 1.7 sec; P = 0.23) and IMCL content (0.93 +/- 0.18% to 1.37 +/- 0.40%; P = 0.34) did not change. Interestingly, the changes in PCr half-time correlated/tended to correlate with changes in fasting insulin (R(2) = 0.50; P = 0.05) and glucose (R(2) = 0.43; P = 0.08) levels. Changes in PCr half-time did not correlate with changes in glucose infusion rate (R(2) = 0.08; P = 0.49).
Conclusion: The rosiglitazone-enhanced insulin sensitivity does not require improved muscular mitochondrial function.