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Short-term cold acclimation improves insulin sensitivity in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus

Nature Medicine volume 21, pages 863865 (2015) | Download Citation

Abstract

Cold exposure may be a potential therapy for diabetes by increasing brown adipose tissue (BAT) mass and activity. Here we report that 10 d of cold acclimation (14–15 °C) increased peripheral insulin sensitivity by 43% in eight type 2 diabetes subjects. Basal skeletal muscle GLUT4 translocation markedly increased, without effects on insulin signaling or AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) activation and only a minor increase in BAT glucose uptake.

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Acknowledgements

We thank K. Jardon, E. Broeders, D. Van Moorsel, K. Jansen, M. Visser, R. Hensgens and R. Wierts (Maastricht University Medical Center) for assistance during the experiments and H. Aydeniz, E. Kornips, J. Stegen, W. Sluijsmans, L. Donselaar (Maastricht University Medical Center), W. Wickenhagen (VU University Medical Center Amsterdam) and M. Ackermans (Academic Medical Center Amsterdam) for assistance with the biochemical analyses. The technical support of P. Schoffelen, L. Wouters and M. Souren (Maastricht University Medical Center) is highly appreciated. This work was supported by the EU FP7 project DIABAT (HEALTH-F2-2011-278373 to W.D.v.M.L.) and by the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (NWO) (TOP 91209037 to W.D.v.M.L). J.H. is supported by an NWO Vidi grant for innovative research (grant 917.14.358).

Author information

Author notes

    • Wouter D van Marken Lichtenbelt
    •  & Patrick Schrauwen

    These authors contributed equally to the study.

Affiliations

  1. Department of Human Biology, School of Nutrition and Translational Research in Metabolism, Maastricht University Medical Center, Maastricht, the Netherlands.

    • Mark J W Hanssen
    • , Joris Hoeks
    • , Anouk A J J van der Lans
    • , José J van den Driessche
    • , Johanna A Jörgensen
    • , Wouter D van Marken Lichtenbelt
    •  & Patrick Schrauwen
  2. Department of Nuclear Medicine, Maastricht University Medical Center, Maastricht, the Netherlands.

    • Boudewijn Brans
    •  & Felix M Mottaghy
  3. Department of Human Movement Sciences, School of Nutrition and Translational Research in Metabolism, Maastricht University Medical Center, Maastricht, the Netherlands.

    • Gert Schaart
    •  & Matthijs K C Hesselink
  4. Nutrition, Metabolism and Genomics group, Division of Human Nutrition, Wageningen University, Wageningen, the Netherlands.

    • Mark V Boekschoten
    •  & Sander Kersten
  5. Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, School of Nutrition and Translational Research in Metabolism, Maastricht University Medical Center, Maastricht, the Netherlands.

    • Bas Havekes
  6. Department of Nuclear Medicine, University Hospital Rheinisch-Westfälische Technische Hochschule (RWTH) Aachen, Aachen, Germany.

    • Felix M Mottaghy

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Contributions

M.J.W.H. was responsible for study design, data acquisition and data analysis and wrote the manuscript. J.H. contributed to the study design, data acquisition and data analysis. B.B. contributed to data analysis. A.A.J.J.v.d.L. contributed to the study design and data acquisition. J.J.v.d.D., M.V.B., M.K.C.H. and S.K. contributed to data acquisition and data analysis. G.S., J.A.J. and B.H. contributed to data acquisition. F.M.M., W.D.v.M.L. and P.S. contributed to the study design and interpretation of data. All authors contributed to the critical revision of the manuscript and approved the final version.

Competing interests

The authors declare no competing financial interests.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Patrick Schrauwen.

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DOI

https://doi.org/10.1038/nm.3891

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