The synergistic impact of glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) (7-36)amide and cholecystokinin-8 (CCK-8) was studied in the rat pancreas. The GLP-1 (7-36)amide (1 pM-1 microM) had no effect on the basal or CCK-stimulated (1 nM-1 pM) amylase release from isolated pancreatic acini. The insulinotropic action of 0.5 nM GLP-1 (7-36)amide, which weakly stimulated the glucose-induced (6.7 mM) insulin release from the isolated perfused rat pancreas, was strongly potentiated by the addition of CCK-8 (20, 50, and 100 pM) to the perfusate. In concentrations as they occur physiologically after a meal, CCK-8 alone had no significant effect on basal or glucose-stimulated (6.7 mM) insulin secretion. Our data support the assumption that the nutrient-regulated intestinal release of various peptides represents a regulatory system to ensure an adequate insulin response to food intake, at least in rats.