|Pancreatin is the mixture of enzymes obtained by extraction of the pancreas and consisting essentially of lipases, amylase and proteases. Pancreatin is a cream colored, amorphous powder which has a faint, characteristic but not offensive odor. Pancreatin is
prepared from fresh or fresh-frozen pancreas, generally of procine origin, although beef pancreas may also be used, but is less potent. Pancreatin and pancrelipase are similar except that pancrelipase has relatively more lipase activity than does pancreatin. Pancreatin supplements are used for patients who are unable to digest food properly because of an insufficient amount of natural pancreatic excretions.
Pancreatin is used as an activc compound for treatment of digestive disturbances attributable to pancreatic insufficiency. Amylase is an enzyme that changes complex sugars (starches) into simple sugars during digestion. Amylase hydrolyzes starch, glycogen, and dextrin to form in all three instances glucose, maltose, and the limit-dextrins. Lipase catalyzes the breakdown of triglycerides into fatty acids. Lipase is an enzyme necessary for the absorption and digestion of nutrients in the intestines. Lipases have an important role in lipid transport and lipoprotein metabolism. Trypsin catalyzes the cleavage of peptide bonds on the carboxyl side of either arginine or lysine. The active enzyme catalyzes the cleavage and activation of additional trypsinogen and other pancreatic proenzymes important to protein digestion. Trypsin hydrolyzes proteins to oligopeptides, amylase hydrolyzes starch to oligosaccharides and the disaccharide maltose, and lipase hydrolyzes triglycerides to fatty acids and glycerol.
Pancreatin hydrolyses fats, changes protein into proteoses and derived substances and converts starches into dextrins and sugars. Because of its direct influence on digestion, pancreatin finds use in many parts of the world as a digestive aid. Pancreatin is a digestant that is used in the treatment of pancreatic insufficiency as pancreatic enzyme replacement. Pancreatin has been used successfully for fortifying the pancreas since it is a glandular compound. Pancreatin is also used as a therapeutic agent for humans suffering from a deficiency of pancreatic enzymes in the intestine which can be caused by chronic relapsing pancreatitis or mucoviscidosis. Pancreatin is often used in people with cystic fibrosis. It is also been claimed to help with food allergies, celiac disease, autoimmune disease, cancer, and weight loss.