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Papers of the Week

2019 Sep 10

Int J Mol Sci



Somatostatin as an Active Substance in the Mammalian Enteric Nervous System.


Gonkowski S, Rytel L
Int J Mol Sci. 2019 Sep 10; 20(18).
PMID: 31510021.


Somatostatin (SOM) is an active substance which most commonly occurs in endocrine cells, as well as in the central and peripheral nervous system. One of the parts of the nervous system where the presence of SOM has been confirmed is the enteric nervous system (ENS), located in the wall of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. It regulates most of the functions of the stomach and intestine and it is characterized by complex organization and a high degree of independence from the central nervous system. SOM has been described in the ENS of numerous mammal species and its main functions in the GI tract are connected with the inhibition of the intestinal motility and secretory activity. Moreover, SOM participates in sensory and pain stimuli conduction, modulation of the release of other neuronal factors, and regulation of blood flow in the intestinal vessels. This peptide is also involved in the pathological processes in the GI tract and is known as an anti-inflammatory agent. This paper, which focuses primarily on the distribution of SOM in the ENS and extrinsic intestinal innervation in various mammalian species, is a review of studies concerning this issue published from 1973 to the present.