Postprandial inhibition of gastric ghrelin secretion by long-chain fatty acid through GPR120 in isolated gastric ghrelin cells and mice. Academic Article uri icon


  • Ghrelin is a gastric peptide hormone that controls appetite and energy homeostasis. Plasma ghrelin levels rise before a meal and fall quickly thereafter. Elucidation of the regulation of ghrelin secretion has been hampered by the difficulty of directly interrogating ghrelin cells diffusely scattered within the complex gastric mucosa. Therefore, we generated transgenic mice with ghrelin cell expression of green fluorescent protein (GFP) to enable characterization of ghrelin secretion in a pure population of isolated gastric ghrelin-expressing GFP (Ghr-GFP) cells. Using quantitative RT-PCR and immunofluorescence staining, we detected a high level of expression of the long-chain fatty acid (LCFA) receptor GPR120, while the other LCFA receptor, GPR40, was undetectable. In short-term-cultured pure Ghr-GFP cells, the LCFAs docosadienoic acid, linolenic acid, and palmitoleic acid significantly suppressed ghrelin secretion. The physiological mechanism of LCFA inhibition on ghrelin secretion was studied in mice. Serum ghrelin levels were transiently suppressed after gastric gavage of LCFA-rich lipid in mice with pylorus ligation, indicating that the ghrelin cell may directly sense increased gastric LCFA derived from ingested intraluminal lipids. Meal-induced increase in gastric mucosal LCFA was assessed by measuring the transcripts of markers for tissue uptake of LCFA, lipoprotein lipase (LPL), fatty acid translocase (CD36), glycosylphosphatidylinositol-anchored HDL-binding protein 1, and nuclear fatty acid receptor peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-. Quantitative RT-PCR studies indicate significantly increased mRNA levels of lipoprotein lipase, glycosylphosphatidylinositol-anchored HDL-binding protein 1, and peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor- in postprandial gastric mucosa. These results suggest that meal-related increases in gastric mucosal LCFA interact with GPR120 on ghrelin cells to inhibit ghrelin secretion.

published proceedings

  • Am J Physiol Gastrointest Liver Physiol

altmetric score

  • 8

author list (cited authors)

  • Lu, X., Zhao, X., Feng, J., Liou, A. P., Anthony, S., Pechhold, S., ... Wank, S.

citation count

  • 82

complete list of authors

  • Lu, Xinping||Zhao, Xilin||Feng, Jianying||Liou, Alice P||Anthony, Shari||Pechhold, Susanne||Sun, Yuxiang||Lu, Huiyan||Wank, Stephen

publication date

  • August 2012