The Role of Glucagon in Insulin Secretion
Glucagon and Insulin are products of the alpha and beta cell respectively, that are essential to maintaining glucose homeostasis. It’s also known that incretins, signaling hormones secreted in our small intestine are essential insulin secretagogues. In understanding ways to mediate insulin production in the beta cell, more must be known specifically about the relationship between glucagon and the glucagon like peptide (GLP-1). In hypoglycemia conditions glucagon is secreted to increase blood glucose concentrations, whereas in hyperglycemia conditions GLP-1 stimulates insulin secretion to reduce blood glucose concentrations. In this study, we examined the relationship between glucagon and GLP-1 because we hypothesize that glucagon and GLP-1 work together to increase insulin secretion. We examined this relationship by performing glucose tolerance tests on our beta cell glucagon receptor knockout mice model(GCGR), to understand the response between glucagon and the beta cell. Then we inhibited the GLP-1 receptor to further understand the relationship between glucagon and GLP-1. We used a Perifusion machine to examine the relationship between the mice’s insulin response specifically in the beta cell to different buffers. If glucagon and the GLP-1 receptor support our hypothesis, future work can be dedicated to creating new agonists that could improve treatment for type 2 diabetic individuals.