Pancreatic duct secretion: experimental methods, ion transport mechanisms and regulation

J Physiol Biochem. 2008 Sep;64(3):243-57. doi: 10.1007/BF03178846.


The pancreatic ductal tree conveys enzymatic acinar products to the duodenum and secretes the fluid and ionic components of pancreatic juice. The physiology of pancreatic duct cells has been widely studied, but many questions are still unanswered concerning their mechanisms of ionic transport. Differences in the transport mechanisms operating in the ductal epithelium has been described both among different species and in the different regions of the ductal tree. In this review we summarize the methods developed to study pancreatic duct secretion both in vivo and in vitro, the different mechanisms of ionic transport that have been reported to date in the basolateral and luminal membranes of pancreatic ductal cells and the regulation of pancreatic duct secretion by nervous, endocrine and paracrine influences.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Culture Techniques
  • Cell Membrane / physiology
  • Gastrointestinal Hormones / physiology
  • Humans
  • Ion Pumps / physiology
  • Ion Transport / physiology*
  • Pancreas, Exocrine / physiology*
  • Pancreatic Ducts / cytology
  • Pancreatic Ducts / innervation
  • Pancreatic Ducts / metabolism*
  • Pancreatic Ducts / physiology
  • Paracrine Communication
  • Perfusion / methods
  • Peripheral Nervous System
  • Punctures / methods
  • Secretin / physiology


  • Gastrointestinal Hormones
  • Ion Pumps
  • Secretin