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Comp Biochem Physiol B. 1989;94(3):505-10.

Combined effects of fasting and vinblastine treatment on serum insulin level, the size of autophagic-lysosomal compartment, protein content and lysosomal enzyme activities of liver and exocrine pancreatic cells of the mouse.

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Department of General Zoology, ELTE University, Budapest, Hungary.


1. The volume fraction of autophagic vacuoles in liver parenchymal and exocrine pancreatic cells was smallest and the serum insulin level highest in the 24 hr prestarved mouse immediately after 3 hr feeding period. 2. The size of the autophagic vacuole and lysosome (dense body) compartments increased in both types of cells during 2-72 hr fasting parallel with decreasing serum insulin levels. 3. The protein content of the cells decreased and the DNA-based activity of acid phosphatase showed little change throughout fasting. The activity of cathepsin D increased during days 2 and 3 of food deprivation. 4. Vinblastine (50 mg/kg body wt) applied for the last 2 hr of different periods (2, 12, 24, 48 and 72 hr) of fasting decreased serum insulin level and increased the fractional cytoplasmic volume of autophagic vacuoles and dense bodies. This increase was smaller when the drug was applied shortly after feeding and much larger after prolonged fasting. The increase was more pronounced in the pancreatic than in the liver cells. 5. Our data show that the effect of vinblastine on the size of the autophagic-lysosomal compartment depends on the feeding status of the animals.

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