In both type 1 and type 2 diabetes, the β-cells of the islets of Langerhans in the pancreas are either destroyed or defective, resulting in insufficient insulin production. To study β-cells in development and disease, Shimajiri et al. generated a mouse in which expression of green fluorescent protein and secreted alkaline phosphatase is driven using the regulatory regions of the β-cell-specific neurogenin-3 gene. Pancreatic organ cultures derived from these mice allow developing β-cells to be visualised. In addition, this model system enables tracking the fate of developing β-cells in response to various stimuli.
- Written by editorial staff. © 2011. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.
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