Amino Acids

, Volume 50, Issue 12, pp 1663–1678 | Cite as

Does l-leucine supplementation cause any effect on glucose homeostasis in rodent models of glucose intolerance? A systematic review

  • Henver S. Brunetta
  • Carolina Q. de Camargo
  • Everson A. NunesEmail author
Invited Review


l-Leucine has been used to improve metabolic outcomes in glucose-intolerant rodent models. However, because studies have used different experimental models and conditions it is difficult to establish the best approach for new clinical trials evaluating the potential effects of l-leucine on glucose homeostasis. We performed a systematic review to report the effect of l-leucine supplementation on glucose homeostasis in rodents with glucose intolerance. The search engines MEDLINE and ScienceDirect were applied using MeSH terms. Thirty-four studies were included in this systematic review. Based on the current data, ingestion of 90–140 mg day−1 of isolated l-leucine in diet-induced obesity (DIO) models shows improvement in metabolic markers if offered during the development of the metabolic disorder in almost all the studies, but not after. Branched-chain amino acid supplementation was effective in streptozotocin-induced β-cells death but not in DIO models. l-Leucine supplementation seems to have an optimal dose and timing for supplementation to improve glucose homeostasis in DIO.


Leucine Glucose homeostasis Insulin resistance Obesity Diabetes 



This research did not receive any specific grant from funding agencies in public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors. The corresponding author is funded by the National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq) and is a CNPq Research Productivity Fellow. The first and the second authors received Ph.D. scholarships from the Coordination for the Improvement of Higher Education Personnel (CAPES).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

This article does not contain any experimental procedure with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.

Supplementary material

726_2018_2658_MOESM1_ESM.doc (62 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOC 62 kb)
726_2018_2658_MOESM2_ESM.docx (18 kb)
Supplementary material 2 (DOCX 17 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Austria, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Physiological Sciences DepartmentFederal University of Santa CatarinaFlorianópolisBrazil
  2. 2.Graduation Program in NutritionFederal University of Santa CatarinaFlorianópolisBrazil
  3. 3.Multicenter Graduation Program in Physiological SciencesFederal University of Santa CatarinaFlorianópolisBrazil

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