Ghrelin release in man depends on the macronutrient composition of the test meal. The mechanisms contributing to the differential regulation are largely unknown. To elucidate their potential role, glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1), gastric inhibitory polypeptide (GIP), insulin, gastrin and somatostatin were examined on isolated rat stomach ghrelin secretion, which offers the advantage of avoiding systemic interactions. Basal ghrelin secretion was in a range that did not permit to consistently evaluate inhibiting effects. Therefore, the effect of gastrointestinal hormones and insulin was analyzed during vagal prestimulation. GLP-1(7-36)amide 10(-8) and 10(-7) M decreased ghrelin secretion significantly. In contrast, GIP 10(-8) and 10(-7) M augmented not only prestimulated, but also basal ghrelin secretion (p<0.05). Insulin reduced ghrelin at 10(-10), 10(-8) and 10(-6) M (p<0.05). Both gastrin 10(-8) M and somatostatin 10(-6) M also significantly inhibited ghrelin secretion. These data demonstrate that GLP-1(7-36)amide, insulin, gastrin and somatostatin are potential candidates to contribute to the postprandially observed inhibition of ghrelin secretion with insulin being the most effective inhibitor in this isolated stomach model. GIP, on the other hand, could attenuate the postprandial decrease. Because protein-rich meals do not effectively stimulate GIP release, other as yet unknown intestinal factors must be responsible for protein-induced stimulation of ghrelin release.