The utilization of circulating maltose was compared to that of glucose in six normal fasting subjects after intravenous injection of 25 g of either sugar. Blood samples were obtained over a 2 hr period and were assayed for free fatty acids (FFA), insulin, glucose, and total reducing substances. Urine was collected for 2 hr after maltose administration and assayed enzymatically for glucose and maltose. Blood glucose concentrations did not increase after maltose infusion, although a significant rise in total reducing substances was noted, indicating the presence of this disaccharide in the blood. Less than 3% of the administered maltose was excreted in the urine either as maltose or glucose. Initially, there was a fourfold increase in serum insulin concentration after glucose and a threefold increase after maltose infusion. Therefore, serum insulin concentrations gradually declined in a similar manner for both sugars. The plasma FFA at 15 min decreased 371 uEq/liter after glucose and 338 uEq/liter after maltose infusion.
Sister John M. Young, Elliot Weser