IGF-I mediates regeneration of endocrine pancreas by increasing beta cell replication through cell cycle protein modulation in mice

J. Agudo, E. Ayuso, V. Jimenez, A. Salavert, A. Casellas, S. Tafuro, V. Haurigot, J. Ruberte, J. C. Segovia, J. Bueren, F. Bosch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

43 Citations (Scopus)


Aims/hypothesis: Recovery from diabetes requires restoration of beta cell mass. Igf1 expression in beta cells of transgenic mice regenerates the endocrine pancreas during type 1 diabetes. However, the IGF-I-mediated mechanism(s) restoring beta cell mass are not fully understood. Here, we examined the contribution of pre-existing beta cell proliferation and transdifferentiation of progenitor cells from bone marrow in IGF-I-induced islet regeneration. Methods: Streptozotocin (STZ)-treated Igf1-expressing transgenic mice transplanted with green fluorescent protein (GFP)-expressing bone marrow cells were used. Bone marrow cell transdifferentiation and beta cell replication were measured by GFP/insulin and by the antigen identified by monoclonal antibody Ki67/insulin immunostaining of pancreatic sections respectively. Key cell cycle proteins were measured by western blot, quantitative RT-PCR and immunohistochemistry. Results: Despite elevated IGF-I production, recruitment and differentiation of bone marrow cells to beta cells was not increased either in healthy or STZ-treated transgenic mice. In contrast, after STZ treatment, IGF-I overproduction decreased beta cell apoptosis and increased beta cell replication by modulating key cell cycle proteins. Decreased nuclear levels of cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor 1B (p27) and increased nuclear localisation of cyclin-dependent kinase (CDK)-4 were consistent with increased beta cell proliferation. However, islet expression of cyclin D1 increased only after STZ treatment. In contrast, higher levels of cyclin-dependent kinase inhibitor 1A (p21) were detected in islets from non-STZ-treated transgenic mice. Conclusions/interpretation: These findings indicate that IGF-I modulates cell cycle proteins and increases replication of pre-existing beta cells after damage. Therefore, our study suggests that local production of IGF-I may be a safe approach to regenerate endocrine pancreas to reverse diabetes. © 2008 Springer-Verlag.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1862-1872
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2008


  • Beta cells
  • Bone marrow-derived cells
  • Cell cycle
  • Islet regeneration
  • Replication


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