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Int J Biochem Cell Biol. 2006;38(5-6):860-72. Epub 2006 Jan 11.

Applications of dipeptidyl peptidase IV inhibitors in diabetes mellitus.

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University of British Columbia, Department of Cellular and Physiological Sciences, Vancouver, BC, Canada.


A number of alternative therapies for type 2 diabetes are currently under development that take advantage of the actions of the incretin hormones glucagon-like peptide-1 and glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide on the pancreatic beta-cell. One such approach is based on the inhibition of dipeptidyl peptidase IV (DP IV), the major enzyme responsible for degrading the incretins in vivo. DP IV exhibits characteristics that have allowed the development of specific inhibitors with proven efficacy in improving glucose tolerance in animal models of diabetes and type 2 human diabetics. While enhancement of insulin secretion, resulting from blockade of incretin degradation, has been proposed to be the major mode of inhibitor action, there is also evidence that inhibition of gastric emptying, reduction in glucagon secretion and important effects on beta-cell differentiation, mitogenesis and survival, by the incretins and other DP IV-sensitive peptides, can potentially preserve beta-cell mass, and improve insulin secretory function and glucose handling in diabetics.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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