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Physiol Res. 2011;60(1):165-73. Epub 2010 Oct 15.

Changes of plasma obestatin, ghrelin and NPY in anorexia and bulimia nervosa patients before and after a high-carbohydrate breakfast.

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  • 1Institute of Endocrinology, Prague, Czech Republic.


Peptides ghrelin, obestatin and neuropeptide Y (NPY) play an important role in regulation of energy homeostasis, the imbalance of which is associated with eating disorders anorexia (AN) and bulimia nervosa (BN). The changes in ghrelin, obestatin and NPY plasma levels were investigated in AN and BN patients after administration of a high-carbohydrate breakfast (1604 kJ). Eight AN women (aged 25.4+/-1.9, BMI: 15.8+/-0.5), thirteen BN women (aged 22.0+/-1.05, BMI: 20.1+/-0.41) and eleven healthy women (aged 25.1+/-1.16, BMI: 20.9+/-0.40) were recruited for the study. We demonstrated increased fasting ghrelin in AN, but not in BN patients, while fasting obestatin and NPY were increased in both AN and BN patients compared to the controls. Administration of high-carbohydrate breakfast induced a similar relative decrease in ghrelin and obestatin plasma levels in all groups, while NPY remained increased in postprandial period in both patient groups. Ghrelin/obestatin ratio was lower in AN and BN compared to the controls. In conclusions, increased plasma levels of fasting NPY and its unchanged levels after breakfast indicate that NPY is an important marker of eating disorders AN and BN. Different fasting ghrelin and obestatin levels in AN and BN could demonstrate their diverse functions in appetite and eating suppression.

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