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Dorothy Hodgkin lecture 2023: The enteroendocrine system-Sensors in your guts.

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Reimann, Frank 


Glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1)-based medication is now widely employed in the treatment of type 2 diabetes and obesity. Like other gut hormones, GLP-1 is released from eneteroendocrine cells after a meal and in this review, based on the Dorothy Hodgkin lecture delivered during the annual meeting of Diabetes UK in 2023, I argue that there is sufficient spare capacity of GLP-1 and other gut hormone expressing cells that could be recruited therapeutically. Years of research has revealed several receptors expressed in enteroendocrine cells that could be targeted to stimulate hormone release: although from this research it seems unlikely to find agents that selectively boost GLP-1, release of a mixture of hormones might be the more desirable outcome anyway, given the recent promising results of new peptides combining GLP1-receptor with other gut hormone receptor activation. Alternatively, the fact that GLP-1 and peptideYY (PYY) expressing cells are found in greater density in the ileum might be exploited by increasing the delivery of chyme to the distal small intestine.


Funder: Medical Research Council; doi:

Funder: Wellcome Trust; doi:

Funder: Diabetes UK; doi:

Funder: St. John's College Cambridge

Funder: BBSRC; doi:


diabetes, enteroendocrine, glucagon-like peptide-1, glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide, gut hormone, obesity, peptideYY, Humans, Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2, Peptide YY, Gastrointestinal Hormones, Glucagon-Like Peptide 1, Ileum, Gastric Inhibitory Polypeptide

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Diabet Med

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MRC (MC_UU_00014/3)
Medical Research Council (MC_UU_12012/3)
Wellcome Trust (220271/Z/20/Z)
Medical Research Council (MC_PC_12012)