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Nils Wierup, Frank Sundler and R Scott Heller

Introduction The pancreatic islets were first described by Langerhans (1869) . He noticed clusters of cells, 100–200 μm in diameter, that were interspersed in the exocrine tissue. He named these clusters Zellhaufen. Langerhans also described that

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J Jason Collier, Tim E Sparer, Michael D Karlstad and Susan J Burke

resistance and glucose intolerance, two conditions that indicate ‘pre-diabetes’ ( Johnson & Olefsky 2013 , Cefalu et al . 2014 , Cefalu 2016 ). The pre-diabetes stage progresses to overt clinical onset of diabetes when the function and mass of the islet β

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Hitoshi Iida, Takeshi Ogihara, Mun-kyeong Min, Akemi Hara, Yeong Gi Kim, Kyoko Fujimaki, Motoyuki Tamaki, Yoshio Fujitani, Hail Kim and Hirotaka Watada

, Meier et al . 2005 ). Whereas islet mass increases during the prenatal and neonatal period, the appearance of proliferation markers in β cells decreases with ageing ( Meier et al . 2005 , 2008 , Gregg et al . 2012 , Saisho et al . 2013 ). Although

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Daniel Raleigh, Xiaoxue Zhang, Benoît Hastoy and Anne Clark

Introduction Two aspects of the amyloidogenic process are significant for diabetes. Firstly the role of small assemblies (so-called ‘oligomers’) of islet amyloid polypeptide (IAPP, also known as amylin), which can have a cytotoxic role in the

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Suwattanee Kooptiwut, Melkam Kebede, Sakeneh Zraika, Sherley Visinoni, Kathryn Aston-Mourney, Jenny Favaloro, Chris Tikellis, Merlin C Thomas, Josephine M Forbes, Mark E Cooper, Marjorie Dunlop, Joseph Proietto and Sofianos Andrikopoulos

small portion of the DBA/2 genome ( Naggert et al. 1995 ), have a genetic predisposition to pancreatic islet failure. Islet function is grossly impaired in DBA/2 and C57BL/KsJ mice expressing the db/db gene (which results in obesity and insulin

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S Dubois, A M Madec, A Mesnier, M Armanet, K Chikh, T Berney and Ch Thivolet

Introduction The pancreas is a complex organ closely associated with an important network of blood capillaries and particularly surrounding the islets of Langerhans. Blood capillaries are important component in the paracrine regulations and

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Shadab Abadpour, Bente Halvorsen, Afaf Sahraoui, Olle Korsgren, Pål Aukrust and Hanne Scholz

could involve induction of endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and oxidative stress leading to pro-inflammatory responses and apoptosis within an islet ( Federici et al . 2001 ). LIGHT/TNSFS14 (TNF superfamily member 14) is a pro-inflammatory cytokine in the

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D Gill, K J Brocklehurst, H W G Brown and D M Smith

, Coghlan & Leighton 2008 ). Several studies have demonstrated that GKAs increase GSIS from β-cells ( Coghlan & Leighton 2008 ), but the consequences of long-term direct action of GKAs on the islet have only recently begun to be investigated. Of potential

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Rodolfo Niño Fong, Zahra Fatehi-Hassanabad, Simon C Lee, Hongfang Lu, Michael B Wheeler and Catherine B Chan

−/− mouse islets, and these islets produce higher levels of reactive oxygen species, no further increase in these parameters is observed after long-term high-fat diet treatment ( Joseph et al . 2004 ). The mechanistic basis for protection from diabetes may

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Stacey N Walters, Jude Luzuriaga, Jeng Yie Chan, Shane T Grey and D Ross Laybutt

Introduction The deleterious effects of chronic hyperglycemia on pancreatic β-cells, a concept termed as glucotoxicity, have been implicated in the alterations in functional β-cell mass in diabetes and with islet transplantation ( Korsgren et al