Alterations in circulating alkaline phosphatase have been described in both man and the experimental animal with chronic insulin deficiency. We evaluated plasma and tissue alkaline phosphatase levels in freely-fed control, streptozotocin-induced diabetic and insulin-treated diabetic rats, seven weeks after the induction of diabetes. Circulating alkaline phosphatase activity was markedly elevated in the insulin deficient animal (p < 0.001) and completely normalized following insulin administration. The elevated plasma alkaline phosphatase activity observed in the insulin deficient animals was heat-resistant and phenylalanine-sensitive, a pattern typical of the intestinal isoenzyme. Small intestinal alkaline phosphatase activity was significantly higher (p < 0.01) in the diabetic animals, but comparable in the insulin-replaced and control rats. The intestinal isoenzyme activity was found to be strikingly insulin-sensitive; withholding insulin therapy for 36 hr prior to sacrifice resulted in an abrupt rise in both plasma and intestinal alkaline phosphatase values comparable to those observed in the insulin-deficient state. In contrast to these observations, skeletal alkaline phosphatase activity was decreased in the insulin deficient animal (p < 0.01) and this abnormality was corrected by insulin replacement. Neither insulin deficiency nor insulin replacement resulted in any significant changes in the hepatic alkaline phosphatase isoenzyme.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1190-1194
Number of pages5
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1981


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