Sensory Nerves

The endocrine pancreas is innervated by sensory afferent nerves as well as by the sympathetic and parasympathetic nerves.97 These sensory nerves seem to harbor CGRP and substance P as neurotransmitters.98 " Both these neuropeptides inhibit insulin secretion.16 The role of these sensory nerves in the regulation of islet function has been examined with the use of the neurotoxin capsaicin, which destroys sensory nerves.98 Using a neonatal model with capsaicin treatment in mice, a sensory denervation was created, and it was demonstrated that CGRP and substance P were partially or completely depleted from islet nerves after such treatment, indicating that this is a suitable model for studying the function of the sensory nerves in the endocrine pancreas.98 Interestingly, it was demonstrated that such treatment potentiates insulin secretion and increases glucose tolerance.99 Thus, sensory nerves seem to restrain glucose tolerance.

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