A gastrin test measures the level of the Reference hormone Opens New Window gastrin in the blood. Gastrin is produced by cells, called G cells, in the stomach lining. When food enters the stomach, G cells trigger the release of gastrin in the blood. As blood levels of gastrin rise, the stomach releases acid (gastric acid) that helps break down and digest food. When enough gastric acid has been produced by the stomach, gastrin levels in the blood drop.
Gastrin also has minor effects on the Reference pancreas Opens New Window, Reference liver Opens New Window, and Reference intestines Opens New Window. Gastrin helps the pancreas produce Reference enzymes Opens New Window for digestion and helps the liver produce Reference bile Opens New Window. It also stimulates the intestines to help move food through the Reference digestive tract Opens New Window Reference Opens New Window.
Sometimes a test for gastrin is done after eating a high-protein diet or after receiving an injection of the digestive hormone secretin into a vein. This is called an intravenous secretin test.
|By:||Reference Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: Reference March 7, 2012|
|Medical Review:||Reference Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
Reference Jerome B. Simon, MD, FRCPC, FACP - Gastroenterology