Euglycemic infusion of insulin detemir compared to human insulin appears to increase direct current brain potential response and reduces food intake while inducing similar systemic effects

  1. Manfred Hallschmid (hallschmid{at},
  2. Kamila Jauch-Chara2,
  3. Oliver Korn2,
  4. Matthias Mölle1,
  5. Björn Rasch1,
  6. Jan Born1,
  7. Bernd Schultes3,4 and
  8. Werner Kern3,5
  1. From the Departments of 1Neuroendocrinology
  2. 2Psychiatry and Psychotherapy
  3. 3Internal Medicine I, University of Lübeck, Lübeck, Germany
  4. the 4Interdisciplinary Obesity Center, Kantonsspital St. Gallen, Switzerland, and
  5. 5MVZ Endokrinologikum Ulm, Ulm, Germany


Objective: In the treatment of diabetic patients, the long-acting insulin analogue insulin detemir is less prone to inducing weight gain than other insulin formulations. Assuming that due to its pharmacological properties detemir displays stronger central nervous anorexigenic efficacy than human insulin, we compared acute effects of human insulin and detemir on EEG measures and food intake.

Research Design and Methods: Frontocortical EEG direct current (DC) potentials were recorded in 15 healthy men during two hyperinsulinemic euglycemic clamps that included an insulin bolus injection (human insulin, 17.75 mU/kg body weight; detemir, 90 mU/kg) followed by a steady 90 min infusion (1.0 vs. 2.0 mU/kg/min). A higher dosage was chosen for detemir to compensate for its delay in impact relative to human insulin and elicit similar systemic effects. Twenty min after infusion, subjects were allowed to eat ad libitum from a test buffet.

Results: Mean glucose infusions to maintain euglycemia (P>0.93) and blood glucose concentrations (P>0.34) did not differ between conditions. Detemir infusion induced a negative DC-potential shift averaging -372.2 μV from 21-90 min that was not observed during human insulin infusion (146.5 μV, P=0.02). Detemir in comparison to human insulin reduced subsequent food intake by 303 kcal (1257 vs. 1560 kcal, P<0.04).

Conclusions: While inducing comparable peripheral effects, detemir exerts stronger acute effects on brain functions than human insulin and triggers a relative decrease in food consumption, suggesting an enhanced anorexigenic impact of detemir compared to human insulin on central nervous networks that control nutrient uptake.


    • Received October 8, 2009.
    • Accepted January 7, 2010.

This Article

  1. Diabetes
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