Glucagon-like peptide 1 (7-36 amide) secretion in response to luminal sucrose from the upper and lower gut. A study using alpha-glucosidase inhibition (acarbose)

Scand J Gastroenterol. 1995 Sep;30(9):892-6. doi: 10.3109/00365529509101597.


Background: After nutrient ingestion there is an early response of glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1) immunoreactivity, although GLP-1 is mainly produced in endocrine cells from the lower gut (ileum and colon/rectum), suggesting that indirect stimulation is important after the ingestion of carbohydrates that are predominantly absorbed from the upper intestine.

Methods: To enable contact of sucrose with lower gut mucosa, sucrose was administered by mouth with and without the simultaneous ingestion of 100 mg of the alpha-glucosidase inhibitor acarbose to six normal healthy volunteers.

Results: There was an early increment in GLP-1 15 min after sucrose ingestion. With acarbose, sucrose reached the colon approximately 120 min after ingestion, as indicated by an increment in breath hydrogen exhalation (p < 0.0001), and GLP-1 release was prolonged (p < 0.0001). The sucrose-related increments in glucose, insulin, C-peptide, and gastric inhibitory polypeptide (GIP) and the suppression of glucagon were only marginally affected by acarbose administration.

Conclusions: GLP-1 release appears to be influenced by indirect mechanisms (early response after sucrose) and by direct luminal contact with lower gut mucosal endocrine cells (late response with acarbose).

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acarbose
  • Adult
  • Enzyme Inhibitors / pharmacology
  • Glucagon / analysis
  • Glucagon / metabolism*
  • Glucagon-Like Peptide 1
  • Glycoside Hydrolase Inhibitors*
  • Humans
  • Intestine, Small / drug effects
  • Intestine, Small / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Peptide Fragments / analysis
  • Peptide Fragments / metabolism*
  • Protein Precursors / analysis
  • Protein Precursors / metabolism*
  • Radioimmunoassay
  • Sucrose / administration & dosage
  • Sucrose / metabolism*
  • Trisaccharides / pharmacology*


  • Enzyme Inhibitors
  • Glycoside Hydrolase Inhibitors
  • Peptide Fragments
  • Protein Precursors
  • Trisaccharides
  • Sucrose
  • Glucagon-Like Peptide 1
  • Glucagon
  • Acarbose