Food and secretagogue stimulation decrease the digestive enzyme content remaining in the rat pancreas
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The aim of the study reported here was to investigate changes in the digestive enzyme content in the pancreas after food and secretagogue stimulation. Rats from which food had been withheld overnight were either fed (between 6 and 8 a.m.) or not before euthanasia and pancreatic excision (at 8 a.m.: 21 not fed and 21 fed) and at 4 (12 p.m.: six not fed and six fed) and 8 h later (4 p.m.: six not fed and six fed). Another 16 rats were anesthetized, fitted with jugular vein and pancreatic duct catheters, and infused with the secretagogues, CCK-33 and secretin, during 1.5 h of pancreatic juice collection before euthanasia and pancreatic excision. The pancreata were homogenized, and total soluble protein and individual enzyme (trypsin and amylase) tissue contents were analyzed. Results indicated lower amounts of protein and enzymes remaining in the pancreata of the fed, compared with non-fed rats. Enzyme values indicated recovery within four hours in fed rats, but non-fed rats also had increased values during daytime. High enzyme secretion during the high dose of hormonal stimulation was reflected in lower enzyme values remaining in the pancreas, compared with that in response to low-dose stimulation. Results indicated that stimulation of the pancreas, either by food ingestion or exogenous secretagogues, lowers the amounts of digestive enzymes remaining in the pancreas, and imply that stimulation and circadian rhythms influence the pancreatic enzyme content at euthanasia. This finding should be borne in mind in interpretation of data from pancreatic studies.