Aims/hypothesis. Beta-cell regeneration has been reported after islet injury in an animal model for diabetes. Recently, we showed up-regulation of clusterin after islet injury and suggested that clusterin might be involved in cytoprotection and in the regeneration of islet cells. The aim of this study was to investigate the correlation of clusterin expression with islet regeneration and its effect on islet cell replication. Methods. Streptozotocin was administrated to rats to induce various types of diabetes. Islet regeneration and clusterin expression were examined after islet injuries. Clusterin cDNA was transfected to MIN6 cells and their proliferation activity was measured by a [3H]thymidine-incorporation assay. Results. A diabetogenic dose of streptozotocin injected in rats provoked an immediate degeneration of beta cells. In this model, islets showed increased clusterin expression with extensive proliferation of alpha cells but showed poor beta-cell replication. A subdiabetogenic dose of streptozotocin, however, led to the proliferation of beta cells with clusterin up-regulation. In streptozotocin-treated neonatal rats, up-regulation of clusterin was noted during beta-cell proliferation. In all experimental models, clusterin was expressed in alpha cells in close correlation with islet cell proliferation, higher transcription of insulin mRNA and MAPKs activation. Cell replication was increased by 31% in the MIN6 cells transfected by the clusterin cDNA. Conclusion/interpretation. Up-regulation of clusterin in alpha cells might induce beta-cell proliferation and thus restore their population after islet injury. We suggest that clusterin could be considered as a growth factor-like molecule stimulating islet-cell proliferation by paracrine action.
- Alpha cell
- Beta cell
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Internal Medicine
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism