Effect of dapagliflozin alone and in combination with insulin in a rat model of type 1 diabetes

J Vet Med Sci. 2020 Apr 9;82(4):467-474. doi: 10.1292/jvms.19-0450. Epub 2020 Mar 11.


Dapagliflozin is a selective sodium-glucose cotransporter 2 (SGLT2) inhibitor; it reduces glucose reabsorption via the kidney and increases the glucose excretion in urine. This inhibitor functions through a unique insulin-independent mechanism, and is therefore a potential new approach for the treatment of hyperglycemia in patients with diabetes. In this study, we evaluated the effectiveness of the SGLT2 inhibitor, dapagliflozin, by using a rat model of type 1 diabetes. Type 1 diabetes was induced by a single intraperitoneal injection of 60 mg/kg streptozotocin (STZ). The STZ-induced rats showed marked hyperglycemia and other metabolic abnormalities. We clarified the hypoglycemic effect of the combination treatment of dapagliflozin with a low dose of insulin compared with dapagliflozin alone and insulin alone in 3-week and 8-week studies. Our results showed that dapagliflozin in combination with a low dose of insulin significantly lowered hyperglycemia, hypercholesterolemia, and hypertriglyceridemia. Furthermore, the antioxidant status and body weight were improved. In contrast, treatment with dapagliflozin alone did not improve the blood glucose levels, lipid profile, antioxidant status, or body weight. These findings suggested that in type 1 diabetes, dapagliflozin was effective in combination with a low dose of insulin; however, the administration of dapagliflozin alone did not achieve a significant effect.

Keywords: dapagliflozin; insulin; type 1 diabetes.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antioxidants / analysis
  • Benzhydryl Compounds / pharmacology*
  • Body Weight / drug effects
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Experimental / drug therapy
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / drug therapy*
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • Glucosides / pharmacology*
  • Hypercholesterolemia / drug therapy
  • Hyperglycemia / drug therapy
  • Hypertriglyceridemia / drug therapy
  • Hypoglycemic Agents / pharmacology*
  • Insulin / pharmacology*
  • Male
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Sodium-Glucose Transporter 2 Inhibitors / pharmacology*


  • Antioxidants
  • Benzhydryl Compounds
  • Glucosides
  • Hypoglycemic Agents
  • Insulin
  • Sodium-Glucose Transporter 2 Inhibitors
  • dapagliflozin