The effect of glucagon on the pressure inside the lower oesophageal sphincter in conscious human subjects and anaesthetized dogs was investigated using the continuous withdrawal method. Glucagon causes a decrease in sphincteric resting pressure in both man and dog and antagonizes the pentagastrin-induced pressure increase of the lower oesophageal sphincter. In experiments on isolated muscle strips of the lower oesophageal sphincter of dogs glucagon decreases the tension and antagonizes the increase in tension induced by pentagastrin. The elevated pressure in patients suffering from achalasia is significantly reduced by glucagon.
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