Neuropeptide Y-like immunoreactivity of plasma during hypoglycaemia in man

A. E. Russell, M. D. Cain, V. Kapoor, M. J. Morris, J. P. Chalmers

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    Previous studies have demonstrated that plasma Neuropeptide Y-like immunoreactivity (NPY-LI) increases after activation of sympathetic nerves. To test the hypothesis that the adrenal medulla may also be a significant source of circulating plasma NPY-LI and to determine if NPY is co-released with adrenal catecholamines, we have measured the peripheral venous concentrations of NPY-LI, adrenaline and noradrenaline in six patients, before and after induction of hypoglycaemia as part of pituitary function tests that also tested gonadotrophin and thyroid stimulating hormone release. The plasma adrenaline concentration was increased approximately 15 times (p < 0.05) relative to baseline at 30 mins and remained elevated for the 90 minutes of the study. The plasma concentration of both noradrenaline and NPY-LI remained unchanged. These results failed to demonstrate an increase in the amount of NPY-LI released into the plasma during stimulation of the adrenal medulla with hypoglycaemic stress in man. They do not support significant co-release of NPY with adrenaline from the adrenal medulla in man, nor a physiological role for NPY as an adrneal hormone in humna subjects in this situation.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)85-88
    Number of pages4
    JournalJournal of the Autonomic Nervous System
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - Feb 1989


    • Adrenal medulla
    • Hypoglycaemia
    • Plasma adrenaline
    • Plasma neuropeptide Y
    • Plasma noradrenaline


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