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1. Using laser scanning confocal microscopy to image [Ca2+]i within intact murine islets of Langerhans, we analysed the [Ca2+]i signals generated by glucose in immunocytochemically identified alpha-, beta- and delta-cells. 2. Glucagon-containing alpha-cells exhibited [Ca2+]i oscillations in the absence of glucose, which petered out when islets were exposed(More)
Interaction between the different types of cells within the islet of Langerhans is vital for adequate control of insulin release. Once insulin secretion becomes defective, as in type 2 diabetes, the most useful drugs to increase insulin release are sulfonylureas. It is well-known that sulfonylureas block K(ATP) channels, which results in depolarization of(More)
Pluripotent embryonic stem (ES) cells are capable of maintaining a self-renewal state and have the potential to differentiate into derivatives of all three embryonic germ layers. Despite their importance in cell therapy and developmental biology, the mechanisms whereby ES cells remain in a proliferative and pluripotent state are still not fully understood.(More)
Endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) are hormone-like agents present in the environment that alter the endocrine system of wildlife and humans. Most EDCs have potencies far below those of the natural hormone 17beta-E2 when acting through the classic estrogen receptors (ERs). Here, we show that the environmental estrogen Bisphenol-A and the native hormone(More)
Glucose, the principal regulator of endocrine pancreas, has several effects on pancreatic beta cells, including the regulation of insulin release, cell proliferation, apoptosis, differentiation, and gene expression. Although the sequence of events linking glycemia with insulin release is well described, the mechanism whereby glucose regulates nuclear(More)
The estrogen receptor ERalpha is emerging as a key molecule involved in glucose and lipid metabolism. The main functions of pancreatic beta-cells are the biosynthesis and release of insulin, the only hormone that can directly decrease blood glucose levels. Estrogen receptors ERalpha and ERbeta exist in beta-cells. The role of ERbeta is still unknown, yet(More)
The cannabinoid CB1 receptor is a well-known player in energy homeostasis and its specific antagonism has been used in clinical practice for the treatment of obesity. The G protein-coupled receptor GPR55 has been recently proposed as a new cannabinoid receptor and, by contrast, its pharmacology is still enigmatic and its physiological role is largely(More)
The secretion of glucagon by pancreatic alpha-cells plays a critical role in the regulation of glycaemia. This hormone counteracts hypoglycaemia and opposes insulin actions by stimulating hepatic glucose synthesis and mobilization, thereby increasing blood glucose concentrations. During the last decade, knowledge of alpha-cell physiology has greatly(More)
OBJECTIVE Leptin released from adipocytes plays a key role in the control of food intake, energy balance, and glucose homeostasis. In addition to its central action, leptin directly affects pancreatic beta-cells, inhibiting insulin secretion, and, thus, modulating glucose homeostasis. However, despite the importance of glucagon secretion in glucose(More)
The etiology of type 2 diabetes mellitus involves the induction of insulin resistance along with the disruption of pancreatic β-cell function and the loss of β-cell mass. In addition to a genetic predisposition, lifestyle factors seem to have an important role. Epidemiological studies indicate that the increased presence of endocrine disrupting chemicals(More)