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Correlation between Insulin Sensitivity and Renal Problems

Renal abnormalities may be indicated by a specific key marker in type 2 diabetes…. 

One of the major causes of mortality in diabetes is diabetic nephropathy and it is also a common cause of end stage renal disease. Recent studies found a linkage between insulin sensitivity and early renal abnormalities in people with type 2 diabetes.

A study conducted by Peter Bjornstad, an M.D from University of Colorado, and colleagues assessed 46 patients with diabetes and measured their glucose infusion rate compared to the obese and lean group. Researchers looked for association between diabetic nephropathy and insulin sensitivity by their estimated glomerular filtration rate and their measured albumin creatinine ratio using the Bouvet equation.

The results found that patients with type 2 diabetes had a lower glucose insulin rate with higher GFR and ACR compared to the obese or lean patients. The study hypothesized the relationship with low glucose infusion rate associated with renal abnormality.

According to the authors in the study, this study is the first to show an association between renal abnormality and insulin sensitivity. More studies are needed to accurately demonstrate the relationship between the two and make any recommendations in clinical practice.

Practice Pearls:
  • Insulin sensitivity may potentially be a marker for early renal abnormalities.
  • Type 2 diabetes has lower glucose infusion rate and higher GFR and ACR compared to obese or lean patients.
  • Measurement of both GFR and ACR were estimated by Bouvet equation.

Bjornstad P, Maahs DM, Cherney DZ, et al. Insulin Sensitivity is an important determinant of renal health in adolescents with type 2 diabetes. Diabetes Care. 2014 July 28