Somatostatin participates in the regulation of nutrient entry from the intestinal tract into the circulation. Thus, dietary fats and proteins may elicit significant increases of gastropancreatic somatostatin. Regulation of postprandial somatostatin secretion may occur via neural, hormonal and humoral factors. This peptide, in pharmacological doses, inhibits virtually all gastrointestinal exo- and endocrine functions as well as local motor activity. Neutralization of endogenous circulating somatostatin with specific antiserum is followed by increases in GH and enteroglucagon, augmenting also the postprandial rise of gastrin, insulin and pancreatic polypeptide. Somatostatin deficiency can be observed in obese subjects with hyperinsulinism. Concomitant elevation of insulin and gastrin levels can be antagonized by exogenous somatostatin. These findings confirm the importance of somatostatin as a peripheral regulator in experimental and human biology.