Effect of intragastric amino acids on lower esophageal sphincter pressure and serum gastrin in man

Am J Gastroenterol. 1986 Mar;81(3):168-71.


The effects of the intragastically administered individual L-amino acids, phenylalanine, tryptophan, glycine, aspartic acid, and leucine on lower esophageal sphincter (LES) pressure and serum gastrin concentration were studied in normal subjects. On separate days and in random, double-blind fashion, 13 adult male subjects received isotonic 0.1 M concentration of amino acids and saline, at pH 5.5 in a volume of 600 ml by rapid intragastric instillation over 5 min. LES pressure and serum gastrin concentration were monitored basally and then at frequent intervals for 90 min. Only tryptophan had a significant effect on LES pressure when compared with saline, decreasing LES pressure from 20 to 60 min after administration (p less than 0.01). Only phenylalanine and tryptophan produced significant stimulation of serum gastrin levels with peak increases above basal occurring 30 min after administration (p less than 0.05). It is concluded that: aspartic acid, leucine and glycine produced no significant changes in LES pressure or serum gastrin level; tryptophan and phenylalanine significantly increased serum gastrin concentration; tryptophan significantly decreased LES pressure whereas phenylalanine had no effect; the mechanism of inhibition of LES pressure by tryptophan is not defined and may be mediated by neural or hormonal pathways possibly involving a duodenal receptor.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Amino Acids / administration & dosage
  • Amino Acids / pharmacology*
  • Aspartic Acid / administration & dosage
  • Aspartic Acid / pharmacology
  • Esophagogastric Junction / drug effects*
  • Esophagogastric Junction / physiology
  • Gastrins / blood*
  • Glycine / administration & dosage
  • Glycine / pharmacology
  • Humans
  • Leucine / administration & dosage
  • Leucine / pharmacology
  • Male
  • Manometry / methods
  • Phenylalanine / administration & dosage
  • Phenylalanine / pharmacology
  • Pressure
  • Stomach
  • Tryptophan / administration & dosage
  • Tryptophan / pharmacology


  • Amino Acids
  • Gastrins
  • Aspartic Acid
  • Phenylalanine
  • Tryptophan
  • Leucine
  • Glycine