PMID: 901996Sep 3, 1977

Comparison of the antilipolytic effect of metoprolol, acebutolol, and propranolol in man

British Medical Journal
R J Newman


Metoprolol and acebutolol, two supposedly cardioselective beta-adrenoceptor antagonists, were tested in 11 healthy men against propranolol, a non-selective drug, for their effect on plasma free fatty acid concentrations before and after insulin. The fasting concentrations of free fatty acid were significantly reduced after acebutolol and propranolol, and their return to normal after insulin was delayed. Metoprolol had no significant effect on free fatty acid levels either before or after insulin. Although both selective and non-selective beta-blocking drugs should be expected to delay the return of free fatty acid values to normal after insulin, in contrast to propranolol and acebutolol, metoprolol had no such effect. This suggests that metoprolol may not be as effective as the other two drugs in controlling lipid metabolism during long-term treatment with beta-adrenoceptor antagonists.


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