Autonomic Regulation of Glucose Homeostasis: a Specific Role for Sympathetic Nervous System Activation

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Purpose of Review: Cardiometabolic disorders such as obesity, metabolic syndrome and diabetes are increasingly common and associated with adverse cardiovascular outcomes. The mechanisms driving these developments are incompletely understood but likely to include autonomic dysregulation. The latest evidence for such a role is briefly reviewed here. Recent Findings: Recent findings highlight the relevance of autonomic regulation in glucose metabolism and identify sympathetic activation, in concert with parasympathetic withdrawal, as a major contributor to the development of metabolic disorders and an important mediator of the associated adverse cardiovascular consequences. Summary: Methods targeting sympathetic overactivity using pharmacological and device-based approaches are available and appear as logical additional approaches to curb the burden of metabolic disorders and alleviate the associated morbidity from cardiovascular causes. While the available data are encouraging, the role of therapeutic inhibition of sympathetic overdrive in the prevention of the metabolic disorders and the associated adverse outcomes requires adequate testing in properly sized randomised controlled trials.

Original languageEnglish
Article number107
JournalCurrent Diabetes Reports
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2018


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