Alterations in pancreatic islet cell function in response to small bowel resection. Am J Physiol Gastrointest Liver Physiol 319: G36-G42, 2020. First published May 28, 2020; doi:10.1152/ajpgi.00282.2019.-After 50% proximal small bowel resection (SBR) in mice, we have demonstrated hepatic steatosis, impaired glucose metabolism without insulin resistance, and increased pancreatic islet area. We sought to determine the consequences of SBR on pancreatic β-cell morphology, proliferation, and expression of a key regulatory hormone, glucagonlike peptide-1 (GLP-1). C57BL/6 mice underwent 50% SBR or sham operation. At 10 wk, pancreatic insulin content and secretion was measured by ELISA. Immunohistochemistry was performed to determine structural alterations in pancreatic α-and β-cells. Western blot analysis was used to measure GLP-1R expression, and immunoassay was used to measure plasma insulin and GLP-1. Experiments were repeated by administering a GLP-1 agonist (exendin-4) to a cohort of mice following SBR. After SBR, there was pancreatic islet hypertrophy and impaired glucose tolerance. The proportion of α and β cells was not grossly altered. Whole pancreas and pancreatic islet insulin content was not significantly different; however, SBR mice demonstrated decreased insulin secretion in both static incubation and islet perfusion experiments. The expression of pancreatic GLP-1R was decreased approximately twofold after SBR, compared with sham and serum GLP-1, was decreased. These metabolic derangements were mitigated after administration of the GLP-1 agonist. Following massive SBR, there is significant hypertrophy of pancreatic islet cells with morphologically intact α- A nd β-cells. Significantly reduced pancreatic insulin release in both static and dynamic conditions demonstrate a perturbed second phase of insulin secretion. GLP-1 is a key mediator of this amplification pathway. Decreased expression of serum GLP-1 and pancreatic GLP-1R in face of no change in insulin content presents a novel pathway for enteropancreatic glucose regulation following SBR. NEW & NOTEWORTHY Metabolic changes occur following intestinal resection; however, the effects on pancreatic function are unknown. Prior studies have demonstrated that glucagon-like protein-1 (GLP-1) signaling is a crucial player in the improved insulin sensitivity after bariatric surgery. In this study, we explore the effect of massive small bowel resection on gut hormone physiology and provide novel insights into the enteropancreatic axis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)G36-G42
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Gastrointestinal and Liver Physiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 2020


  • Glucagon-like protein 1 receptor
  • Pancreas
  • Small bowel resection


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