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Pancreas. 1995 Nov;11(4):396-401.

Quantitative immunohistochemical changes in the endocrine pancreas of nonobese diabetic (NOD) mice.

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Cátedra de Histología y Embriología B, Facultad de Ciencias Médicas, La Plata, Argentina.


The nonobese diabetic (NOD) mouse is an animal model that shares a number of clinical, genetic, and immunologic characteristics with human insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus. Since little is known about the morphometric cell profiles in the endocrine pancreas of these NOD animals, it was of interest to assess their changes in morphometry within the pancreatic islet cell types during two stages of this syndrome. Prediabetic (6-week-old) and diabetic (16-week-old) NOD female mice, as well as normal C57BL/6 female mice (15 weeks old), were used. Light microscopic immunocytochemical and morphometric methods were employed to study the endocrine cell populations. The immunoperoxidase technique for the identification of insulin, glucagon, somatostatin, and pancreatic polypeptide, as well as the point-counting method, was used on serial sections of pancreas tissue. Compared to those of normal and prediabetic mice, pancreata from diabetic animals showed a decrease in both the number of islets and the volume density of the endocrine component. Analysis of islet tissue revealed a significant diminution of B-cell volume density, as well as an increased A-, D-, and PP-cell volume density. A parallel variation in the number of B and non-B cells was also found. In addition, when the total pancreatic tissue surface was taken as reference, the fractional area occupied by all the different types of islet cells was seen to be diminished in a variable fashion. We conclude that the diabetic syndrome of NOD mice not only severely affects the B-cell mass, but also causes marked changes in the non-B endocrine-cell populations.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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