Gastrointestinal hormone

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The gastrointestinal hormones (or gut hormones) constitute a group of hormones secreted by enteroendocrine cells in the stomach, pancreas, and small intestine that control various functions of the digestive organs. Later studies showed that most of the gut peptides, such as secretin, cholecystokinin or substance P, were found to play a role of neurotransmitters and neuromodulators in the central and peripheral nervous systems.

Enteroendocrine cells do not form endocrine glands but are spread throughout the digestive tract. They exert their autocrine and paracrine actions that integrate all of gastrointestinal function.

Types of Gastrointestinal hormones[edit]

The gastrointestinal hormones can be divided into three main groups based upon their chemical structure.

Ghrelin is a peptide hormone released from the stomach and liver and is often referred to as the "hunger hormone" since high levels of it are found in individuals that are fasting. Ghrelin antagonistic treatments can be used to treat illnesses such as anorexia and loss of appetites in cancer patients. Ghrelin treatments for obesity are still under intense scrutiny and no conclusive evidence has been reached. This hormone stimulates growth hormone release.

Cholecystokinin is responsible for gall bladder secretions, gastrointestinal motility as well as pancreatic exocrine secretions.

Peptide YY is involved mostly in satiation modulation.

Pancreatic polypeptide function is most apparent in control of gastrointestinal motility and satiation

Amylin controls glucose homeostasis and gastric motility

Glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide possesses an acute influence on food intake through its effects on adipocytes

Glucagon-like peptide-1 has an effect on incretin activity as well as satiation

Glucagon-like peptide-2 is responsible for gastrointestinal motility and growth

Oxyntomodulin plays a role in controlling acid secretion and satiation

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