Production of ketone bodies and their contribution to lipogenesis were measured in isolated livers from normal and streptozocin-induced diabetic (STZ-D) rats perfused with tracer amounts of 3H2O and (R)-3-hydroxy[3-14C]butyrate. Diabetes decreased by 80–95% the total rates of fatty acid and 3-β-hydroxysterol synthesis in perfused livers and livers of live rats. The activity of cytosolic acetoacetyl-CoA synthetase was slightly (17%) decreased in livers from STZ-D rats. The incorporation of ketone bodies into fatty acids and sterols was markedly inhibited in perfused livers from STZ-D rats despite the stimulation of ketogenesis by diabetes and the presence of oleate. Treatment of the rats with insulin before liver perfusion led to a normalization of the rates of ketogenesis and fatty acid synthesis. The rates of sterol synthesis were only partially normalized by insulin treatment. We conclude that in STZ-D, ketosis does not stimulate hepatic lipogenesis via cytosolic activation of acetoacetate.

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