Background: Diminished growth hormone (GH) is associated with impaired endothelial function and fibrinolysis. GH-releasing hormone is the primary stimulus for GH secretion and a substrate of dipeptidyl peptidase-4. We tested the hypothesis that dipeptidyl peptidase-4 inhibition with sitagliptin increases stimulated GH secretion, vasodilation, and tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) activity.
Methods and results: Healthy adults participated in a 2-part double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, crossover study. First, 39 patients (29 women) received sitagliptin or placebo on each of 2 days separated by a washout. One hour after study drug, blood was sampled and then arginine (30 g IV) was given to stimulate GH. Vasodilation was assessed by plethysmography and blood sampled for 150 minutes. Following a washout, 19 of the original 29 women received sitagliptin alone versus sitagliptin plus antagonist to delineate GH receptor (GHR)- (n=5), nitric oxide- (n=7), or glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor- (n=7) dependent effects. Sitagliptin enhanced stimulated GH secretion (P<0.01 versus placebo, for 30 minutes) and free insulin-like growth factor-1 (P<0.001 versus placebo, after adjustment for baseline) in women. Vasodilation and tPA increased in all patients, but sitagliptin enhanced vasodilation (P=0.01 versus placebo) and increased tPA (P<0.001) in women only. GHR blockade decreased free insulin-like growth factor-1 (P=0.04 versus sitagliptin alone) and increased stimulated GH (P<0.01), but decreased vascular resistance (P=0.01) such that nadir vascular resistance correlated inversely with GH (rs=-0.90, P<0.001). GHR blockade suppressed tPA. Neither nitric oxide nor glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor blockade affected vasodilation or tPA.
Conclusions: Sitagliptin enhances stimulated GH, vasodilation, and fibrinolysis in women. During sitagliptin, increases in free insulin-like growth factor-1 and tPA occur via the GHR, whereas vasodilation correlates with GH but occurs through a GHR-independent mechanism.
Clinical trial registration: URL: http://www.clinicaltrials.gov. Unique identifier: NCT01701973.
Keywords: dipeptidyl peptidase‐4; growth hormone; insulin‐like growth factor‐1; tissue‐type plasminogen activator; vasodilation.
© 2018 The Authors. Published on behalf of the American Heart Association, Inc., by Wiley.