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Glucagon is used in the treatment of beta blocker toxicity.

How it works

Glucagon binds the glucagon receptor, a G protein-coupled receptor located in the plasma membrane, which then initiates a dual signaling pathway using both adenylate cyclase activation and increased intracellular calcium. Adenylate cyclase manufactures cAMP (cyclic AMP), which activates protein kinase A (cAMP-dependent protein kinase). This enzyme, in turn, activates phosphorylase kinase, which, in turn, phosphorylates glycogen phosphorylase, converting into the active form called phosphorylase A. Phosphorylase A is the enzyme responsible for the release of glucose-1-phosphate from glycogen polymers.

Common side effects

Vomiting, Nausea, Hypersensitivity reaction, Decreased potassium level in blood, Tachycardia


Content on this page was last updated on 28 September, 2016, by Dr. Varun Gupta (MD Pharmacology)