Clozapine directly increases insulin and glucagon secretion from islets: implications for impairment of glucose tolerance

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

G C Smith, Z Y Zhang, T Mulvey, N Petersen, S Lach, P Xiu, A Phillips, W Han, M-W Wang, P R Shepherd

Second generation antipsychotics cause derangements in glucose metabolism that are often interpreted as insulin resistance. In previous studies we have shown that this is not classical insulin resistance but the drugs were actually inducing a hyperglycaemic state associated with elevated hepatic glucose output (HGO) and increased levels of glucagon and insulin. However, it remains unclear whether these effects are directly elicited by drug actions in the liver and pancreas, or whether they are indirectly mediated. Here we investigated if clozapine is capable of inducing insulin resistance in the liver or enhancing insulin and glucagon secretion from the pancreas. It was observed that insulin signalling was elevated in livers from animals treated with clozapine indicating there was no insulin resistance in the early steps of insulin signalling. To explore whether the defects arise at later stages of insulin action we used an isolated perfused liver system. In this model, clozapine had no direct effect on insulin's counter regulatory effect on epinephrine-induced HGO. In isolated mouse islets clozapine significantly increased glucose-stimulated insulin secretion while simultaneously blocking glucose-induced reductions in glucagon secretion. We also show that the non-peptidic glucagon receptor like peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor agonist Boc5 was able to overcome the inhibitory effects of clozapine on glucose metabolism. Taken together these results suggest that clozapine does not have any direct effect on glucose metabolism in the liver but it simultaneously stimulates insulin and glucagon secretion, a situation that would allow for the concurrent presence of high glucose and high insulin levels in treated animals.

Original languageEnglish
JournalSchizophrenia Research
Issue number1-3
Pages (from-to)128-33
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2014
Externally publishedYes

    Research areas

  • Animals, Antipsychotic Agents, Clozapine, Cyclobutanes, Epinephrine, Glucagon, Glucagon-Like Peptide-1 Receptor, Glucose, Glucose Tolerance Test, Hypoglycemic Agents, Insulin, Insulin Resistance, Liver, Male, Pancreas, Rats, Sprague-Dawley, Receptors, Glucagon, Sympathomimetics, Tissue Culture Techniques, Journal Article, Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

ID: 172512782