Increased levels of glucocorticoids (GCs), which are endogenous stress-induced steroid hormones such as corticosterone, are associated with type 2 diabetes (T2D), but whether they contribute to the development of the condition has been unclear. Shpilberg et al. addressed this issue by developing a Sprague-Dawley rat model to study the combined effect of GCs and a high-fat diet (HFD). They found that rats on a HFD and treated with a GC succumbed to rapid-onset diabetes, whereas glycaemia was near normal in rats on a HFD or with GC treatment alone. Combined treatment also led to increased food intake, extensive central adiposity and fatty liver. These data suggest that increased levels of GCs promote the development of T2D and other obesity-associated complications. Thus, exogenous GCs – which are used to treat a range of immunological conditions – should be used with caution. Page 671
- Written by editorial staff. © 2012. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial Share Alike License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0), which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution and reproduction in any medium provided that the original work is properly cited and all further distributions of the work or adaptation are subject to the same Creative Commons License terms.