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Life Sci. 1987 May 25;40(21):2053-8.

Stimulation of insulin secretion by beta-endorphins (1-27 & 1-31).


Synthetic human beta-endorphin potentiates insulin secretion by the isolated perfused rat pancreas when glucose is present in the perfusate at concentrations of either 125 or 200 mg/dl, whereas it fails to exert any effect on insulin secretion in the presence of a substimulatory concentration of 100 mg/dl. Similar potentiation of insulin secretion occurred in response to the 1-27 fragment (beta-endorphin1-27) of beta-endorphin. This transient potentiation lasts only 3 to 4 minutes, whereupon secretion returns toward control levels. Thus beta-endorphin produces only a transient spike-like secretory profile similar to the first phase of glucose-induced insulin secretion and it fails to produce any chronic insulin secretory response comparable to the second phase of insulin secretion. The insulinotropic effect of beta-endorphins occurred at concentrations varying from 0.1 to 5.0 ug/ml. These data suggest that beta-endorphin and beta-endorphin1-27 potentiate insulin secretion via a common beta cell opioid receptor, and that beta-endorphin may exert a paracrine control of insulin secretion. However, any such regulation appears to be via short-term alterations in the secretory process per se.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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