Lipid signals derived from lipolysis and membrane phospholipids play an important role in glucose-stimulated insulin secretion (GSIS), though the exact secondary signals remain unclear. Previous reports have documented a stimulatory role of exogenously added mono-acyl-glycerol (MAG) on insulin secretion from cultured β-cells and islets. In this report we have determined effects of increasing intracellular MAG in the β-cell by inhibiting mono-acyl-glycerol lipase (MGL) activity, which catalyzes the final step in triacylglycerol breakdown, namely the hydrolysis of MAG to glycerol and free fatty acid (FA). To determine the role of MGL in GSIS, we used three different pharmacological agents (JZL184, MJN110 and URB602). All three inhibited GSIS and depolarization-induced insulin secretion in INS-1 (832/13). JZL184 significantly inhibited both GSIS and depolarization-induced insulin secretion in rat islets. JZL184 significantly decreased lipolysis and increased both mono- and diacyglycerol species in INS-1 cells. Analysis of the kinetics of GSIS showed that inhibition was greater during the sustained phase of secretion. A similar pattern was observed in the response of Ca 2+ to glucose and depolarization but to a lesser degree suggesting that altered Ca 2+ handling alone could not explain the reduction in insulin secretion. In addition, a significant reduction in long chain-CoA (LC-CoA) was observed in INS-1 cells at both basal and stimulatory glucose following inhibition of MGL. Our data implicate an important role for MGL in insulin secretion.