Incretins have received a lot of attention as a relatively new treatment option for patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus. What are incretins, and how do they work to regulate blood sugar levels?
Here with a brief update is Louis Kuritzky, MD, Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Community Health and Family Medicine at the University of Florida in Gainesville. (Click here for Part 2).
"Take home" Points
1. Incretins are hormones derived from the intestine, not the pancreas. They help to explain why many patients show improvement in diabetes after gastric bypass surgery. The one being most commonly manipulated is called glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1). It increases insulin secretin, suppresses glucagon secretion, and retards emptying of stomach contents into the intestine, as well as affecting satiety.
2. So-called incretin mimetics are drugs that last much longer in the body than GLP-1. The enzyme dipeptidyl peptidase-4 (DPP4) is responsible for its degradation; inhibitors of this enzyme enhance the effects of GLP-1.
For further information on how incretins are used in clinical practice, listen to Part 2.
|Update on Incretins (Part 1)|
Update on Incretins (Part 1)