Amylinergic control of food intake

Physiol Behav. 2006 Nov 30;89(4):465-71. doi: 10.1016/j.physbeh.2006.04.001. Epub 2006 May 11.


Amylin is a pancreatic B-cell hormone that plays an important role in the regulation of nutrient fluxes. As such, amylin reduces food intake in laboratory animals and man, slows gastric emptying and it reduces postprandial glucagon secretion. Amylin deficiency which occurs concomitantly to insulin deficiency in diabetes mellitus, may therefore contribute to some of the major derangements associated with this disorder (hyperphagia, excessive glucagon secretion, accelerated rate of gastric emptying). The described actions of amylin all seem to depend on a direct effect of amylin on the area postrema (AP). As to amylin's satiating effect, the physiological relevance of this action is underlined by studies involving specific amylin antagonists and amylin-deficient mice. In the AP, amylin seems to modulate the anorectic signal elicited by CCK. Subsequent to AP activation, the amylin signal is conveyed to the forebrain via distinct relay stations. Within the lateral hypothalamic area, amylin diminishes the expression of orexigenic neuropeptides such as orexin and MCH. Whether these effects contribute to amylin's short term satiating action remains to be determined. Recent studies suggest that amylin may also play a role as a long-term, lipostatic signal, especially when other feedback systems to the brain are deficient. Obese, leptin-resistant Zucker rats which are hyperinsulinemic and hyperamylinemic, were chronically infused with the amylin antagonist AC 187. AC 187 significantly elevated food intake in obese Zucker rats while having no effect in lean controls. This indicates that at least under certain conditions, chronic blockade of endogenous amylin action may lead to an increase in food intake and/or body weight. As mentioned, the site and mechanism of action for peripheral amylin to reduce food intake seems to be well established. It is less clear how centrally administered amylin reduces food intake although it is well known that 3rd ventricular administration of amylin produces a very strong and long-lasting anorectic action. Amylin receptors have been described in various hypothalamic nuclei but the endogenous ligand of these receptors remains to be investigated. The same holds true as to the physiological relevance of the anorectic effect seen after central amylin administration.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adiposity / physiology
  • Amyloid / physiology*
  • Animals
  • Animals, Genetically Modified
  • Appetite Regulation / physiology*
  • Eating / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Islet Amyloid Polypeptide
  • Mice
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Rats
  • Satiation / physiology*
  • Signal Transduction / physiology


  • Amyloid
  • Islet Amyloid Polypeptide