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International Journal of Experimental Diabetes Research
Volume 3 (2002), Issue 1, Pages 61-68

Streptozotocin-Induced Diabetes Decreases Mammary Gland Lipoprotein Lipase Activity and Messenger Ribonucleic Acid in Pregnant and Nonpregnant Rats

1Servicio de Bioquímica-Investigación, Hospital Ramón y Cajal, Madrid, Spain
2Facultad de Ciencias Experimentales y Técnicas, Universidad San Pablo-CEU, Boadilla del Monte (Madrid) E-28668, Spain

Received 4 October 2001; Accepted 28 October 2001

Copyright © 2002 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Diabetes mellitus is associated with a reduction of lipoprotein lipase (LPL) activity in adipose tissue and development of hypertriglyceridemia. To determine how a condition of severe insulin deficiency affects mammary gland LPL activity and mRNA expression during late pregnancy, streptozotocin (STZ) treated (40 mg/kg) and non-treated (control) virgin and 20 day pregnant rats were studied. In control rats, both LPL activity and mRNA were higher in pregnant than in virgin rats. When compared to control rats, STZ-treated rats, either pregnant or virgin, showed decreased LPL activity and mRNA content. Furthermore, mammary gland LPL activity was linearly correlated with mRNA content, and either variable was linearly correlated with plasma insulin levels. Thus, insulin deficiency impairs the expression of LPL in mammary glands, revealing the role of insulin as a modulator of the enzyme at the mRNA expression level.