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Vitam Horm. 2013;91:143-94. doi: 10.1016/B978-0-12-407766-9.00007-9.

Gut hormones and obesity: physiology and therapies.

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Division of Diabetes, Endocrinology, Metabolism, Hammersmith Hospital, Imperial College London, London, United Kingdom.


Over the past 30 years, it has been established that hormones produced by the gut, pancreas, and adipose tissue are key players in the control of body weight. These hormones act through a complex neuroendocrine system, including the hypothalamus, to regulate metabolism and energy homeostasis. In obesity, this homeostatic balance is disrupted, either through alterations in the levels of these hormones or through resistance to their actions. Alterations in gut hormone secretion following gastric bypass surgery are likely to underlie the dramatic and persistent loss of weight following this procedure, as well as the observed amelioration in type 2 diabetes mellitus. Medications based on the gut hormone GLP-1 are currently in clinical use to treat type 2 diabetes mellitus and have been shown to produce weight loss. Further therapies for obesity based on other gut hormones are currently in development.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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