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Circulation. 2008 May 6;117(18):2340-50. doi: 10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.107.739938. Epub 2008 Apr 21.

Cardioprotective and vasodilatory actions of glucagon-like peptide 1 receptor are mediated through both glucagon-like peptide 1 receptor-dependent and -independent pathways.

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Heart and Stroke Richard Lewar Centre of Excellence for Cardiovascular Research, University of Toronto, Ontario, Canada M5G-1C4.

Erratum in

  • Circulation. 2008 Jul 22;118(4):e81.



The glucagon-like peptide 1 receptor (GLP-1R) is believed to mediate glucoregulatory and cardiovascular effects of the incretin hormone GLP-1(7-36) (GLP-1), which is rapidly degraded by dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP-4) to GLP-1(9-36), a truncated metabolite generally thought to be inactive. Novel drugs for the treatment of diabetes include analogues of GLP-1 and inhibitors of DPP-4; however, the cardiovascular effects of distinct GLP-1 peptides have received limited attention.


Here, we show that endothelium and cardiac and vascular myocytes express a functional GLP-1R as GLP-1 administration increased glucose uptake, cAMP and cGMP release, left ventricular developed pressure, and coronary flow in isolated mouse hearts. GLP-1 also increased functional recovery and cardiomyocyte viability after ischemia-reperfusion injury of isolated hearts and dilated preconstricted arteries from wild-type mice. Unexpectedly, many of these actions of GLP-1 were preserved in Glp1r(-/-) mice. Furthermore, GLP-1(9-36) administration during reperfusion reduced ischemic damage after ischemia-reperfusion and increased cGMP release, vasodilatation, and coronary flow in wild-type and Glp1r(-/-) mice, with modest effects on glucose uptake. Studies using a DPP-4-resistant GLP-1R agonist and inhibitors of DPP-4 and nitric oxide synthase showed that the effects of GLP-1(7-36) were partly mediated by GLP-1(9-36) through a nitric oxide synthase-requiring mechanism that is independent of the known GLP-1R.


These data describe cardioprotective actions of GLP-1(7-36) mediated through the known GLP-1R and novel cardiac and vascular actions of GLP-1(7-36) and its metabolite GLP-1(9-36) independent of the known GLP-1R. Our data suggest that the extent to which GLP-1 is metabolized to GLP-1(9-36) may have functional implications in the cardiovascular system.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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