The importance of portal insulin delivery in the regulation of postprandial carbohydrate metabolism is uncertain. To address this question, three groups of dogs were studied: one group in which pancreatic venous drainage was transected and reanastomosed (portal insulin delivery), one in which the pancreatic drainage was transected and anastomosed to the inferior vena cava (peripheral insulin delivery), and one that received only a sham operation. Plasma insulin was greater (P < 0.05) during peripheral insulin delivery than in either the portal or sham groups, respectively, before and after meal ingestion. On the other hand, C-peptide concentrations did not differ between groups, resulting in a higher (P < 0.001) insulin to C-peptide ratio in the peripheral group. This indicated that the hyperinsulinemia in the peripheral group was due to decreased insulin clearance rather than increased insulin secretion. Isotopically determined splanchnic uptake of ingested glucose, postprandial suppression of hepatic glucose release, incorporation of CO2 into glucose (a qualitative measure of gluconeogenesis), and total-body glucose uptake were virtually identical in all groups. Similarly, plasma lipid, β-hydroxybutyrate, and lactate concentrations did not differ between groups. Our data indicate that, despite differences in systemic insulin concentration, portal and peripheral insulin delivery comparably regulate hepatic and extrahepatic carbohydrate metabolism after meal ingestion.

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