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Int J Endocrinol Metab. 2019 Jan 7;17(1):e74255. doi: 10.5812/ijem.74255. eCollection 2019 Jan.

Vitamin D Increases Glucose Stimulated Insulin Secretion from Insulin Producing Beta Cells (INS1E).

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Hormone Laboratory, Department of Medical Biochemistry, Oslo University Hospital, Oslo, Norway.
Institute of Clinical Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway.



Vitamin D affects the pancreatic beta cell function and in vitro studies have shown that vitamin D may influence insulin secretion, apoptosis, and gene regulation. However, the outcomes have differed and there has been uncertainty regarding the effect of different vitamin D metabolites on insulin secretion.


We hypothesized that vitamin D could increase insulin secretion in insulin producing beta cells and investigated the effect of 25(OH) vitamin D and 1,25(OH)2 vitamin D on insulin secretion.


The study was conducted in INS1E cells, an established insulinoma cell line from rat. The cells were divided into three groups; a control group, a group with 1,25(OH)2 vitamin D enriched medium (10 nM), and a group with 25(OH) vitamin D (10 nM) supplemented medium. After 72 hours of treatment, the cells underwent glucose stimulation at different concentrations (0, 5, 11, and 22 mM) for 60 minutes.


INS1E cells treated with 1,25(OH)2 vitamin D showed a trend towards increased insulin secretion at all glucose concentrations compared to control cells and at 22 mM glucose, the difference was significant (18.40 +/- 1.97 vs 12.90 +/- 2.22 nmol/L, P < 0.05). However, pretreatment with 25(OH) vitamin D did not show any significant increase in insulin secretion compared to cells without vitamin D treatment. There was no difference in insulin secretion in cells not stimulated with glucose.


Treatment with 1,25(OH)2 vitamin D combined with high levels of glucose increased insulin secretion in INS1E cells, whereas 25(OH) vitamin D had no effect. This suggests that glucose stimulated insulin secretion in INS1E beta cells appears to be related to the type of vitamin D metabolite treatment.


Diabetes; Glucose Stimulated Insulin Secretion (GSIS); INS1E Cells; Metabolism; Vitamin D

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