A transgenic model for studying islet development

Danling Gu, Nora Sarvetnick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


The regeneration of islet cells in a transgenic mouse strain harboring the interferon-γ gene (IFN-γ) linked to the insulin promoter DNA fragment (ins-IFN-γ) is described. The regeneration follows the loss of islets by an immune response provoked by IFN-γ and manifests in the proliferation of duct cells, the presence of progenitor cells, and the formation of buds and isletlike structures. All three types (A, B, and D) of four endocrine cells identified by immunolabeling are present. The progenitor cells express neuronal enzymes, tyrosine hydroxylase (TH) and glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD), as revealed by specific antibodies. The results indicate that the islet regeneration closely resembles the embryonic islet differentiation and serves as a for studying islet development. The expression of neuronal enzymes by islet progenitor cells signifies yet unknown relationships to the nervous tissue. GAD, recognized as an autoantigen in insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (IDDM) and stiff-man syndrome, may provide a clue to the mechanism of autoimmune disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)161-165
Number of pages5
JournalRecent Progress in Hormone Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1994
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology


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