Mechanisms linking intermittent hypoxia to impaired glucose metabolism. Intermittent hypoxia acts on pancreatic insulin production and secretion as well as on insulin target organs such as adipose tissue, liver and skeletal muscle. These combined effects induce impaired glucose tolerance, insulin resistance and dyslipidemia. Intermittent hypoxia effects may be direct and/or mediated through the activation of the sympathetic nervous system. HIF-1α (hypoxia inducible factor 1-alpha), NF-κB (nuclear factor-κB), GLUT4 (glucose transporter type 4).