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J Endocrinol Invest. 2001 Jun;24(6):RC19-21.

Post-prandial decrease of circulating human ghrelin levels.

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Medizinische Klinik Innenstadt, Ludwig-Maximilians Universität, Munich, Germany.


Ghrelin, an endogenous ligand of the GH secretagogue-receptor, has recently been shown to stimulate GH secretion and to have orexigenic and adipogenic effects in rodents, but little is known about its regulation and biological function in humans. Gastric motor function is under control of the central nervous system; however, the afferent and efferent loops of this feedback control mechanism remain to be elucidated. In the study presented here we investigated the effect of nutrient intake on circulating human ghrelin levels, and a possible association between ghrelin levels and gastric emptying. Ten healthy volunteers received a standard meal after an overnight fast. Food intake significantly decreased plasma ghrelin levels from 248.5 +/- 15.0 to 179.5 +/- 17.9 fmol/ml (120 min after meal, p=0.047). Gastric emptying half-time (non-invasive 13C-octanoic acid breath test) was correlated with fasting plasma ghrelin levels (r=0.74, p=0.0013). Ghrelin appears to be one possible candidate to provide feedback signaling between nutrient intake, gastric motor function and the central nervous system.

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