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Eur Surg Res. 1990;22(3):143-50.

Islet transplantation restores normal serum amylase levels in diabetic rats.

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Department of Functional Biology-Physiology, University of Oviedo, Spain.


Diabetes is associated with a diminution in exocrine pancreatic function. The goal of our study was to investigate whether the altered exocrine pancreatic function of streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats could be ameliorated by islet transplantation. Diabetic rats received either more than 1,000 syngeneic islets intraportally (islet transplantation group) or pancreatic, nonviable insular tissue (sham transplantation group). Plasma amylase and insulin levels in diabetic rats were significantly lower than in normal rats. The exocrine pancreas of streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats showed alterations (decrease of zymogen granules, diminution of endoplasmic reticulum, clusters of ribosomes without organization) in the structure of acinar cells at the electron microscopic level. After islet transplantation, plasma glucose levels were restored to normal values, and those of amylase and insulin gradually increased to normal values. A positive correlation between plasma levels of amylase and insulin was found. Three months after islet transplantation, the islet-transplanted rats did not show morphologic alterations of the acinar cells which were still found in the sham-transplanted rats. It is concluded that alterations of exocrine pancreas in streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats are ameliorated by islet transplantation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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