Pancreatic polypeptide (PP) is a newly discovered hormonal peptide localised in a distinct endocrine cell type in the pancreas. PP circulates in plasma and in normal subjects levels rise substantially on the ingestion of food (mean rise 138 pmol/l). In 10 patients with chronic pancreatitis with exocrine deficiency the PP response to a test breakfast was greatly reduced (mean rise 20 pmol/l, P less than 0.001). PP response to the meal was normal in 10 patients with active coeliac disease and 12 patients with acute tropical sprue with steatorrhoea.
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