Restoration of normal lipid and aminoacid metabolism in diabetic patients treated with a portable insulin-infusion pump

Lancet. 1979 Jun 16;1(8129):1258-61. doi: 10.1016/s0140-6736(79)92226-8.


To determine whether abnormalities of lipid and aminoacid metabolism observed in diabetes are corrected when plasma-glucose levels are restored to normal, eight insulin-dependent diabetics were treated for 7-14 days with a portable infusion pump which delivers insulin subcutaneously in basal (between-meal) doses with pulse-dose increments before meals. Mean plasma-glucose (206 +/- 24 mg/dl during conventional insulin treatment) fell to 89 +/- 3 mg/dl at day 7 and 84 +/- 2 mg/dl at day 14 of pump treatment; glycosuria was eliminated. Plasma cholesterol, triglycerides, and free fatty acids were elevated during conventional insulin treatment but fell to normal after 7 days of pump treatment. Plasma-levels of branched-chain aminoacids were 50-60% above control levels during conventional treatment but fell to normal after 7 days of pump therapy. Aminoacids were reduced from their high postprandial levels to normal values after insulin-pump treatment. In addition to restoring plasma-glucose to normal, treatment of diabetes with a portable insulin-infusion system results in restoration of normal lipid and aminoacid metabolism. Long-term use of this system may determine whether metabolic changes resulting from insulin lack cause the complications of diabetes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Amino Acids / metabolism*
  • Blood Glucose / analysis*
  • Child
  • Diabetes Mellitus / drug therapy*
  • Diabetes Mellitus / metabolism
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infusions, Parenteral / instrumentation*
  • Insulin / administration & dosage*
  • Lipid Metabolism*
  • Male
  • Syringes


  • Amino Acids
  • Blood Glucose
  • Insulin