Magnitude of rise in proneurotensin is related to amount of triglyceride appearance in blood after standardized oral intake of both saturated and unsaturated fat

Lipids Health Dis. 2020 Aug 21;19(1):191. doi: 10.1186/s12944-020-01361-0.


Background: In rodents, neurotensin contributes to high fat diet induced obesity by facilitation of intestinal fat absorption. The effect of oral lipid load on plasma proneurotensin and relationship with plasma triglycerides in humans is unknown.

Aim: To investigate the acute effects of an oral lipid load on proneurotensin and plasma triglycerides and their interrelationships in healthy individuals.

Setting/ methods: Twenty-two healthy subjects were given 150 mL of full milk cream (54 g fat) and 59 mL of pure olive oil (54 g fat) in the fasted state at two different occasions separated by at least 1 week in random order. Venous blood was drawn at fasted before 0 h (h) and at 1 h, 2 h and 4 h after ingestion. Post-ingested values of proneurotensin and plasma triglycerides were compared with fasting levels and post ingestion Area Under the Curve (AUC) of proneurotensin was correlated with that of plasma triglycerides.

Results: An immediate rise of plasma proneurotensin and plasma triglycerides were observed after ingestion of cream with maximum increase at 2 h for proneurotensin [mean (95% confidence interval)] of 22 (12-31) pmol/L (P < 0.001) and at 3 h for triglycerides of 0.60 (0.43-0.78) mmol/L (P < 0.001). Similarly, plasma proneurotensin and plasma triglycerides increased after ingestion of olive oil with maximum increase of proneurotensin at 3 h of 62 (46-78) pmol/L (P < 0.001) and plasma triglycerides at 3 h of 0.32 (0.18-0.45) mmol/L (P < 0.001). The post lipid load AUC for proneurotensin correlated significantly with the AUC for plasma triglycerides both after cream (r = 0.49, P = 0.021) and olive oil (r = 0.55, P = 0.008), respectively.

Conclusion: Proneurotensin increases after an oral lipid load of both cream and olive oil and the rise of post-ingestion plasma triglycerides is significantly related to the rise of post-ingestion proneurotensin.

Keywords: Fat absorption; Gut hormones; Obesity; Proneurotensin; Triglycerides; Type 2 diabetes.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Area Under Curve
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / blood
  • Dietary Fats / administration & dosage*
  • Fats, Unsaturated / administration & dosage*
  • Female
  • Gastrointestinal Microbiome / physiology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Neurotensin / blood*
  • Obesity / blood*
  • Protein Precursors / blood*
  • Triglycerides / blood*
  • Young Adult


  • Dietary Fats
  • Fats, Unsaturated
  • Protein Precursors
  • Triglycerides
  • proneurotensin
  • Neurotensin