Recent reports have shown that resistance to insulin-stimulated glucose uptake, increased plasma glucose and insulin response to oral glucose, and hypertriglyceridemia can be seen in first degree relatives of patients with type 2 diabetes. We have recently shown that very similar metabolic changes can be seen in hyperinsulinemic individuals who have either normal or impaired glucose tolerance (IGT). Given these data, we thought it would be of interest to compare the plasma glucose and insulin response to an oral glucose challenge, plasma lipid concentrations, and blood pressure in offspring of parents with IGT as compared to offspring of parents with normal glucose tolerance. Parents with IGT had higher plasma insulin and triglyceride levels and blood pressure than those with normal glucose tolerance. The two groups of offspring were young, non-obese and similar in terms of age, gender distribution and body mass index. Statistically significant increases in plasma insulin response to oral glucose and in systolic and diastolic blood pressure were present in the offspring of parents with IGT. Demonstration of similar abnormalities in plasma insulin response to glucose and blood pressure regulation in patients with IGT and in their offspring is consistent with the view that individual differences in insulin metabolism and blood pressure are modulated by genetic factors and that both may be related to variations in insulin-stimulated glucose uptake and/or plasma insulin concentration.
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