The post-translational processing of proglucagon in the small intestine gives rise to glucagon-like peptide-1 (PG 78-107 amide) which has profound effects on the endocrine pancreas, and in many species also on the stomach. Glucagon-like peptide-1 (PG 78-107 amide) is secreted in man in response to physiological stimuli e.g. a mixed meal. Glucagon-like peptide-1, in concentrations corresponding to those observed in response to meals, strongly stimulates insulin secretion, in all mammals studied, even more potently than the gastric inhibitory peptide. Thus, glucagon-like peptide-1 fulfills the classic criteria for being a hormone and is likely to be a new incretin. The glucagon inhibitory effect of glucagon-like peptide-1 (PG 78-107 amide) probably further potentiates the effect of glucagon-like peptide-1 on glucose metabolism and distinguished this peptide from other intestinal peptides which have been proposed as incretins. Glucagon-like peptide-1 also inhibits gastric acid secretion and gastric emptying in man. The latter delays nutrient entry to the intestine and thereby diminishes meal-induced glucose excursions. Elevated plasma concentrations of immunoreactive glucagon-like peptide-1 have been reported in Type 2 (noninsulin-dependent) diabetic patients, however, the consequences of the elevation are not yet known. However, elevated levels of glucagon-like peptide-1 in patients with increased gastric emptying rate (post-gastrectomy syndromes) may be responsible for the exaggerated insulin secretion seen in these patients.