Insulin sensitivity and skeletal muscle glucose transport in horses with equine polysaccharide storage myopathy

Erin J. Annandale, Stephanie J Valberg, James R Mickelson, Elizabeth R Seaquist

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

68 Scopus citations


Equine polysaccharide storage myopathy (PSSM) is an inherited disorder characterized by the accumulation of glycogen and abnormal polysaccharide in muscle with normal glyco(geno)lytic enzyme activities. The purpose of this study was to evaluate in vivo insulin sensitivity and glucose excursion in PSSM using a euglycemic hyperinsulinemic clamp. In addition, the content of muscle glucose transporters (GLUT1 and GLUT4) and the insulin receptor was determined in muscle biopsies using Western blot analysis. The glycogen content was 1.8-fold higher, and isolated polysaccharide analyzed by iodine absorption spectra, was less branched in equine PSSM. Throughout the clamp, the affected horses required a higher rate of glucose infusion to maintain euglycemia. Although GLUT1 content was lower, the total content of GLUT4 and insulin receptor was not different in myopathic vs. control horses. PSSM therefore represents a novel disorder where enhanced insulin sensitivity and elevated glucose excursion leads to increased synthesis of muscle glycogen, which in our horses appears to be independent of augmented GLUT4 or IR quantity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)666-674
Number of pages9
JournalNeuromuscular Disorders
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2004

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Funding provided by the American Quarter Horse Association and the Morris Animal Foundation was acknowledged.

Copyright 2009 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • Glucose transport
  • Horse
  • Insulin
  • Myopathy
  • Rhabdomyolysis


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