Tohoku J. Exp. Med., 1972, 107 (3)

Plasma Glucagon Response to Blood Glucose Fall, Gastrointestinal Hormones and Arginine in Man

AKIRA OHNEDA, MUNEHIKO SATO, KIYOSHI MATSUDA, AKIRA YANBE, YOSHISUKE MARUHAMA and SHOICHI YAMAGATA

The Third Medical Department, Tohoku University School of Medicine, Sendai

The response of plasma glucagon to several stimuli was studied and compared in normal and diabetic subjects. Plasma glucagon was measured by the radioimmunoassay using an anti-glucagon serum, which is relatively specific for pancreatic glucagon. Insulin-induced hypoglycemia caused a marked elevation of plasma glucagon in normal subjects but minimal in diabetic patients. A rapid fall of blood glucose, cataglycemia, induced by the discontinuation of glucose infusion did not show any changes in the level of plasma glucagon. The response of plasma glucagon was not observed after the injection of tetrapeptide of gastrin or secretin, although these hormones induced an increase in the level of plasma insulin. Pancreozymin did not induce any changes in plasma insulin or glucagon in a dosis of one clinical unit per kg of body weight. The infusion of 30 g of L-arginine stimulated the secretion of pancreatic glucagon and the plasma level of glucagon was moderately elevated in both normal and diabetic subjects. These results suggest that L-arginine infusion is recommended as a tool for the alpha-cell function test of the pancreas in man.

Key words ——glucagon response; insulin-hypoglycemia; cataglycemia; gastrointestinal hormones; arginine

===============================

Tohoku J. Exp. Med., 1972, 107, 241-251