Ventromedial hypothalamic lesions impair glucoregulation in response to endotoxin

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The purpose of the present study was to determine the role of the ventromedial hypothalamus (VMH) in regulating counter-regulatory hormone release and the increase in glucose flux that is observed after injection of endotoxin [lipopolysaccharide (LPS)]. Bilateral lesions of the VMH were produced electrolytically 2 wk before the experiment; sham-operated rats served as controls. [3-3H]glucose was infused to assess whole body glucose flux before and for 4 h after intravenous injection of Escherichia coli LPS. In control rats, LPS increased the plasma concentrations of glucose and lactate and the rates of glucose appearance and disappearance. In these animals, LPS also produced sustained elevations in corticosterone, glucagon, and catecholamines. In contrast, the glucose metabolic response to LPS was attenuated by >50% in VMH-lesioned rats. These changes were associated with a blunted increase in the plasma concentration of glucagon, epinephrine, and norepinephrine in VMH-lesioned rats compared with control animals. There was no difference in the plasma concentrations of corticosterone or TNF-α between the two groups after LPS or the responsiveness of sham- and VMH- lesioned rats to an infusion of either glucagon or epinephrine. These data indicate that the VMH plays a central role in regulating the secretion of glucagon and catecholamines and the stimulation of glucose flux after LPS.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)R1525-R1531
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Regulatory Integrative and Comparative Physiology
Issue number5 41-5
StatePublished - 1997

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Medicine


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